Incoming Assistant Professor Brie - New Feature

Evelyne Brie, an incoming assistant professor, was recently featured in a story by Western Social Science, in which she discusses the importance of examining the role of group identity in divided societies. In particular, Brie employs a quantitative approach to understand how group-level identities impact political resentment and voting behaviour. To read the full article, please visit: Examining the role of group identity in divided societies. 

We are thrilled to welcome Evelyne Brie to Western University and the Department next month! 

Professor Taylor and Professor Horak – New Grant

Over the next five years, the Money and Local Democracy Project / Projet sur l’argent et la democratie locale will conduct a far-reaching investigation of campaign finance regulation and local election campaigning. Funded by a SSHRC Insight Grant following pilot work funded by Western Faculty of Social Science research seed grants, the project is led by Professors Zack Taylor and Martin Horak at Western; Sandra Breux at l’Institut national de la recherche scientifique, Montréal; and Kristin Good at Dalhousie University.

This mixed-methods project will entail the largest survey of election candidates ever conducted in Canada – over 4,000 candidates in 183 municipalities in all 10 provinces, which are home to four out of five Canadians – as well as an analysis of candidates’ campaign finance disclosures over three election cycles and in-depth interviews with former candidates and campaign managers. The project will contribute new insights, both nationally and internationally, into whether differently configured campaign finance regimes create more competitive elections, how local candidates campaign, and enduring questions regarding the influence of money in politics.

Professor Alcantara and PhD Student Shanaya Vanhooren - New Article Publication 

Professor Christopher Alcantara has co-authored a paper entitled "Improving First Nations water security through governance" with PhD Candidate Shanaya Vanhooren and University of Guelph scholar Sherri Longboat.

The article has been deemed one of the top ten most downloaded articles in Canadian Public Administration/Administration Publique du Canada between 2019-2020. Congratulations, Professor Alcantara and PhD Candidate Shanaya Vanhooren! 

The paper examines an under-appreciated tool for improving First Nations water security, and develops a framework to guide the design and analysis of First Nations water governance models. To read the full paper, please visit: Wiley Online Library.

Professor Alcantara and Professor Armstrong - New Article Publication 

Christopher Alcantara, Professor and Graduate Chair; and David Armstrong, Associate Professor, have recently published a new article entitled "Locating federalism: Non-financial assets and public policy in Canada."

The article argues that non-financial asset ownership is a useful, yet often overlooked measure of power among different levels of government. To read the full article, please visit: Wiley Library Online. 

Political Science Alumnus Enters Mayoral Race

Local Government Program (LGP) Recruitment and Development Officer, Deputy Mayor, and Political Science Alumnus, Josh Morgan, is running for London Mayor Fall 2022. To read the full story, please visit Global News.

Local Government Program (LGP) Expands to Western's Downtown Site

The Local Government Program (LGP) was recently featured in a Western News article announcing a new downtown hub located at 450 Talbot Street in London, Ontario.

The article highlights the 13 new projects that have been selected to drive experiential learning and partnerships between Western and the greater London community. This new site will allow the Local Government Program to offer alternative-format courses, further contributing to its long-standing reputation as a "rigorous professional program with a national reputation and community orientation."

To read the full article by Western News, please visit: Western's downtown site to bolster community connections.

Professor Biswas Mellamphy, Professor Girard, and Campbell - New Article Publication

Nandita Biswas Mellamphy, Associate Professor and Undergraduate Chair; Tyler Girard, SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellow; and Anne Campbell, Gold Medalist in Political Science (UWO, 2021) and Canadian Parliamentary Intern (2021-2022), have just published a new article entitled 'Interpreting crises through narratives: the construction of a COVID-19 policy narrative by Canada's political parties' in Critical Policy Studies. Congratulations, Nandita, Tyler, and Anne!

This article focuses on the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada and poses the question: how was a crisis narrative constructed, and to what extent did the features of the emergent narrative vary across political elites? To read the full article, please visit: Critical Policy Studies.

Caleb Althorpe, PhD Candidate – New Article Publication

Caleb Althorpe, a PhD Candidate in Political Science, has recently had his article titled 'What is Meaningful Work?' published in Social Theory and Practice. Congratulations Caleb!

This article argues that two orthodox views of meaningful work - the subjective view and the autonomy view - are deficient. It then proposes and defends the contributive view of meaningful work, where what makes work meaningful is both its complexity and the extent to which a worker is involved in its contributive aspect. To read the full article by Caleb Althorpe, please visit: Social Theory and Practice.

Professor Girard – New Tenure-Track Position

Professor Girard (PhD '21) has recently accepted a tenure-track position at Purdue University in Indiana, a Research-1 University within the top-tier of American Universities. Congratulations, Professor Girard!

The appointment is a major accomplishment for a Canadian-trained Political Science PhD, and reflective of changes in the Department of Political Science at Western University. Girard acknowledges the outstanding mentorship opportunities and methodology training in the graduate program as playing a critical role in his success. To read the full story by Rob Rombouts, please visit: Western Political Science PhD accepts tenure-track position at top-tier American university.

Professor Finneron-Burns – Edited Publication

Professor Finneron-Burns' edited volume, titled 'Oxford Handbook of Population Ethics,' has now been published with Oxford University Press.

The essays included in this handbook discuss the value of population change, as well as our obligation to protect future generations from current issues; such as climate change, family planning, and the prioritization of health care. To read the full handbook, please visit Oxford University Press.

Professor Quinn – New Publication

Professor Quinn has a new article in Australian Outlook titled 'Building An Understanding of the Past and Our Responsibility for the Present.'

On the anniversary of the Rwandan genocide, a human rights crisis unfolds in Ukraine. To avert genocides, we must acknowledge the dark reality of these horrific events. To read the full article please visit:

Professor Horak and Professor Taylor – New Publication

In 2021, Professors Horak and Taylor were invited to contribute to the Canadian dataset and profile report to an international project on measuring local autonomy funded by the European Commission. Published in April 2022, the final report by project leaders Andreas Ladner, Nicolas Keuffer, and Alexander Bastenian of the University of Lausanne, Self-rule index for local authorities in the EU, Council of Europe and OECD countries, 1990–2020, compares 57 countries over 30 years. The report finds that local autonomy measured across eleven dimensions has increased in most countries. Compared to the average, Canada scores lower on institutional depth, policy scope, effective political discretion, the conditionality of the financial transfer system, borrowing autonomy, legal protection, administrative supervision, and national access, and higher on fiscal autonomy, fiscal self-reliance, and organizational autonomy. Overall, Canada scores 45 out of 100 on the Local Autonomy Index compared to the mean score of 57. Professors Horak and Taylor are grateful for the research support of Amanda Gutzke, who collected data for the project as an Undergraduate Student Research Internship in Summer 2021.

Alumni Moses Latingo Odida - Documentary Production

Moses Latigo Odida (M.A. 2010) has produced a documentary entitled: 'Links to Justice: A Documentary about Combatting the School-to-Prison Pipeline' in conjunction with the Black Legal Action Centre.

Christopher Hewitt – Postdoctoral Fellow

Dr. Christopher Hewitt will hold a one-year Mitacs Accelerate Postdoctoral Fellowship at industry partner Esri Canada under the supervision of Professor Zack Taylor. An accomplished cartographer and spatial analyst, Dr. Hewitt will acquire the skills to construct a state-of-the-art spatial database of historical census data accessible through a map-based web portal that will facilitate data discovery and analysis. Esri is the world’s leading provider of spatial analysis software tools. This project is a companion to Professor Taylor’s Canadian Communities Policy Observatory project at Western’s Network of Economic and Social Trends (NEST).

Professor Taylor – New Grant

In February 2022, Professor Zack Taylor participated with a group of British and Canadian scholars in a joint British Academy-CiFAR Knowledge Frontiers Symposium on the Good City, where he presented and discussed his research on local autonomy and multi-level governance. This led to a successful application in partnership with Professor Matthew Wargent at the University of Cardiff for a seed grant to establish a new research network on devolution, local autonomy, and the multi-level governance of place in Britain and Canada. The grant will fund a workshop attended by British and Canadian scholars in Cardiff in Fall 2022. A follow-up workshop will be held in Canada in 2023.
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