faculty of environmental studies

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Research projects

External research funding for FES projects since 2000 has reached more than 10 million. This tells us what we already know: that research is at the heart of FES. The time and effort faculty members devote to securing research funding helps faculty and students engage in the innovative research that defines the Faculty, and the diversity and scope of the successful projects – and of the granting institutions – showcases the interdisciplinarity and the broad relevance of our work.

Funds raised though major grants, while designated for particular projects, benefit the entire Faculty. They help put FES in the spotlight by highlighting the work we do. They also help foster the general research culture in the Faculty. Research culture goes far beyond the amount of money raised from external sources, and it is clear from the wide array of seminar series, conferences and publications that emerge from the Faculty that FES has one of the most diverse and active research cultures at York. By showcasing the success of these major grant holders we celebrate the continuing development of that research culture and the many innovative and exciting activities it supports and inspires.

IRENA Policy Advisory Services and Capacity Building
Investigator(s):
Agency:
International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA)
Term:
2011-2012
Description:

IRENA is an intergovernmental organization that aims to promote widespread adoption and sustainable use of all forms of renewable energy. The project will support the establishment of a renewable energy learning portal towards the creation of a global network of students interested in further education and training on sustainable energy (IRENA photo).

Environmental Justice for Métis Women & Youth as HIV Prevention
Investigator(s):

Sarah Flicker and Jessica Yee (Native Youth Sexual Health Network)

Co-Investigator(s):

M.K. Anderson, Erin Konsmo, Jennifer Rankin

Agency:
Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)
Term:
2011-2012
Description:

This initiative will explore how Métis women and youth understandings of 'place' (as a social determinant of health) impacts on their ability to exercise sexual and reproductive health rights that create conditions of vulnerability to HIV (Taking Action 4 Youth photo).

Aboriginal AIDS Awareness Week Events
Investigator(s):

Sarah Flicker and Jessica Yee (Native Youth Sexual Health Network)

Co-Investigator(s):

Erin Konsmo

Agency:
Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)
Term:
2011-2012
Description:

The Canadian Aboriginal AIDS Network (CAAN) holds Aboriginal AIDS Awareness Week each year from December 1st-5th. This convergence of cultural, social, health and political events during Aboriginal AIDS Awareness Week is a demonstration of the importance of dedicated attention to the Aboriginal HIV/AIDS agenda (CAAN photo).

The Power of Stories: Storytelling and HIV/AIDS
Investigator(s):
Co-Investigator(s):

Francisco Ibanez-Carrasco

Agency:
Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)
Term:
2012-2013
Description:

This Café Scientifique project aims to engage, inform and provoke dialogue about the importance of storytelling in HIV prevention, treatment, support and care. Drawing from a variety of community-based research projects and creative works, community members and researchers are invited into a dialogue about storytelling's role in transforming people’s health and environment. (CIHR Café Scientifique event photo on arts-based health research in Ottawa in 2011).

Using “Phosphorus-Ferrous Eutrophication Model to Identify Cyanobacteria Bloom Formation Risk in Georgian Bay Embayments
Investigator(s):
Co-Investigator(s):

Sue Watson (Environment Canada’s National Water Research Institute )and Todd Howell (Ontario Ministry of the Environment’s Environmental Monitoring and Reporting Branch)

Agency:
Georgian Bay Forever
Term:
2012-2013
Description:

The project aims to provide Georgian Bay Forever and government agencies with a sounder scientific understanding of risk factors of cyanobacteria blooms in the embayments of Eastern Giorgian Bay, especially those factors which influence oxygen depletion of surface sediments, a key risk factor (Wikimedia Commons photo).

Ontario EcoSchools
Investigator(s):
Agency:
Ministry of Education
Term:
2012-2013
Description:

The project aims to continue to build capacity for environmental education and action in Ontario schools including revisions in curriculum, French language translation, outreach activities, workshops for teachers and school board members, certification in teaching ecological literacy and action to conserve energy, minimize waste and green school grounds (EcoSchools photo).

Investigating Regulatory Chill: Understanding Contemporary Constraints on Regulatory Decision-Making to Protect the Environment
Investigator(s):
Agency:
SSHRC
Term:
2012-2015
Description:

The research aims to critically investigate the role of investor rights provisions in trade and investment agreements in the ability and/or willingness of Canadian law makers to enact tough environmental laws. The research will focus on trade and investment regimes and how they may affect regulatory decision-making with respect to the environment, primarily in cases of resource extraction (A. Smith photo).

Sustainable Neighborhood Retrofit Action Plan (SNAP): Program Evaluation and Lessons Learned for Accelerating Environmental Improvement in Established Neighborhoods
Investigator(s):

Laura Taylor and Emily Stewart

Collaborators:

Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) and Deloitte Consulting

Agency:
MITACS Accelerate Internship Program
Term:
2012
Description:

The overall goal of the proposed research is to evaluate the SNAP program. The intent is to learn from the three pilot SNAPs that are currently underway, and similar initiatives around the world, to improve the design and delivery of the program in the future, and its transferability to other neighbourhoods within and beyond the Greater Toronto Area. (TRCA Photo)

Community-Based Monitoring of Ice-Breeding Seals and Polar Bear Feeding in the Gulf of Boothia
Investigator(s):
Co-Investigator(s):

Steven Ferguson, Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Agency:
Indian Affairs and Northern Development
Term:
2011-2015
Description:

The goal of the study is to investigate the health and ecology of seal populations in the Gulf of Boothia and to collect information on seals that will allow monitoring of the foraging habits of polar bears, which rely on seals as prey. A collaborative partnership with the community of Kugaaruk will be done to carry out a community‐based monitoring program to collect biological information and samples from seals harvested in the Gulf of Boothia (Polar Bears International Photo).

Green Economic Macro-Model and Accounts (GEMMA)
Investigator(s):

Peter Victor and Eric Miller

Co-Investigator(s):

Tim Jackson (University of Surrey, UK)

Agency:
CIGI/INET and Metcalf Foundation
Term:
2011-2012
Description:

The project aims to analyse the possibility of achieving economic and financial stability, high employment and good social outcomes, in the presence of clearly defined resource and environmental limits, even if these mean some limits to economic growth. GEMMA will allow policymakers, scholars, and the engaged public to explore these scenarios.

Contested Countryside: Land use conflicts in Southern Ontario
Investigator(s):
Co-Investigator(s):

Anders Sandberg, Stephen Bocking and Stephen Hill (Trent University)

Agency:
SSHRC
Term:
2012-2015
Description:

The project examines the complex environmental, political, social and economic relations concerning controversies that implicate rural and urban regions and communities. It focuses on two dimensions of complexity: (1) evolving rural-urban relations through conflicts over land use and/or local development initiatives; and (2) role played by knowledge-based authority in these conflicts whether constructed on the basis of scientific expertise or attachment to place.