SURGE NEWSLETTER | December 2021
drone photo of UTM campus

A Note From Our Office

Professor Steven ShortIn the short time I have served as UTM’s interim Vice-Principal Research I have been on a steep climb, learning to navigate the complexities of U of T’s world-leading research ecosystem while also trying to fulfil my duty to support the scholarship of UTM’s brilliant researchers. Throughout this journey, I have been dazzled by the breadth of our scholarship and the products of our intellectual endeavors
and believe our contributions will have an impact far beyond our time. Our pandemic mantra, UTMtogether, has an additional meaning for me as I have seen that collectively and collaboratively, our contributions sum to more than our individual efforts. Together, we have elevated UTM’s status as a potent research institution unto itself. I am proud to count myself among you and, though it has been tough at times, I feel incredibly fortunate for this opportunity to serve UTM as an interim V-PR.

I still have more to learn about our campus and its research community, yet I am confident that we are supported by an incredibly talented and dedicated staff and leadership. We are all weathering an unprecedented time in our lives, and the challenges we have faced, and continue to face, are far from trivial. Nevertheless, during the often-dark days of the COVID-19 pandemic, I have witnessed how we have all pulled together and somehow, remarkably, how our scholarship has continued to thrive. I am excited by the prospects of the coming year and look forward to hearing more about all your remarkable accomplishments. I will welcome Professor Kent Moore back to his position as VPR in February, hoping I have served you well in his absence and recognizing that I have been greatly enriched by my experiences as interim V-PR.

In closing, I want to take this opportunity to wish you and your families a very joyful, relaxing holiday season, and to thank you for all your hard work and contributions to UTM!

Steven Short, PhD
Interim Vice-Principal, Research
Associate Professor, Biology


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Operations & Resources
COVID-19 Information for Researchers
Funding & Awards
Events & Opportunities
View to the U Podcast
New & Notable


Operations & Resources

Run by Dr. Elizabeth Parke, the Collaborative Digital Research Space provides plenty of opportunities to support UTM researchers. 
  • Co-working/Writing Sessions run Tuesdays to Fridays from 9 to 11 a.m. Email CDRS for more information. 
  • 1:1 Research Consultations are available Wednesdays and Fridays from 1 to 3 p.m. or by appointment. 
  • Join in as experts discuss topics, themes, and tools in the Digital Humanities. Digital Drop-in Sessions happen Thursdays from 1 to 2 p.m. 


REDCap (Research Electronic Data Capture) is a secure web application that University of Toronto faculty researchers can use to build and manage online surveys and databases. The Centre for Research and Innovation Support (CRIS) is launching a REDCap Resource Webpage that contains the relevant training and resources that will help you get started with the REDCap. This resource page contains the newly released series of short training videos on REDCap features, created by CRIS in collaboration with Academic Collaborative Technologies (ACT).

COVID-19 Information for Researchers

Find COVID-19 updates and forms on the OVPR website, including a recent message from Acting Vice-Principal, Research Professor Steven Short. Additionally, researchers can access up-to-date information from U of T's Office of the Vice-President, Research and Innovation at Coronavirus (COVID-19) Researcher FAQ as well as curated resources compiled by the Centre for Research Innovation & Support. 

Funding & Awards

We have started to receive announcements for funding and award opportunities with winter and early spring deadlines. Please follow the links below to learn more about these opportunities, and reach out to our team with any questions.

Nemmers Prize

Deadline: December 31, 2021

The Nemmers Prizes recognize those with careers of outstanding achievement in their discipline, as demonstrated by major contributions to new knowledge or the development of significant new modes of analysis. Nominations are accepted biennially in odd years for the following disciplines:
>>>Learn more.

CIHR Project Grant
Spring 2022 Competition

Registration Deadline: February 9, 2022
Internal Proposal Deadline: TBA
External Proposal Deadline: March 9, 2022

The Canadian Institutes of Health Research Project Grant program is designed to capture ideas with the greatest potential for important advances in fundamental or applied health-related knowledge, health care, health systems, and/or health outcomes by supporting projects of research proposed and conducted by individual researchers or groups of researchers in all areas of health. >>>Learn more.


SSHRC Insight Development Grant

Internal Deadline: January 24, 2022
Sponsor Deadline: January 28, 2022

SSHRC IDGs support research in its initial stages, enabling the development of new research questions, as well as experimentation with new methods, theoretical approaches and/or ideas. Funding is provided for short-term research development projects, of up to two years, proposed by individuals or teams. >>>Learn more.


Balzan Prizes

Sponsor Deadline: March 15, 2022 

The Balzan Prizes are awarded annually to scholars, artists and scientists who have distinguished themselves in their fields on an international level. Four Balzan Prizes are awarded each year; two in selected fields in Literature, Moral Sciences and the Arts, and two in selected fields in the Physical, Mathematical and Natural Sciences and Medicine. The four topics for the 2022 Balzan Prizes (nominations spring 2022) will be:

  • Moral Philosophy
  • Ethnomusicology
  • Biomaterials for nanomedicine and tissue engineering
  • Glaciation and ice-sheet dynamics
>>>Learn more.

Royal Society of Canada Medals & Awards

Sponsor Deadline: February 9, 2022
>>>Learn more.


Events & Opportunities

UTM is home to a vast and eclectic range of innovative and world-class student and faculty researchers — and we strive to share the knowledge we generate through our partnerships and connections with local government and industry, and through strong networks with our colleagues and collaborators from around the world. Get to know our researchers at a variety of events both online and on campus. 

Annual Research Prize Symposium

Join us January 24th at 1 p.m. for our Annual Research Prize Symposium, where we’ll celebrate excellence in research at the University of Toronto Mississauga.  

  • DATE: Monday, January 24, 2022 
  • TIME: 1 to 2:30 p.m. EDT 
  • LOCATION: Zoom 

DSI Summer Undergraduate Data Sciences (SUDS) Research Program

The University of Toronto Data Sciences Institute (DSI) is soliciting supervisors with research opportunities for students to participate in the DSI Summer Undergraduate Data Sciences (SUDS) Research Program. $7,200 will be provided by the DSI to the supervisor for the student's stipend. Application/research proposal submission deadline is January 4, 2022.


CDHI Visiting Speaker Series: Winter 2022

Mark your calendars! The Critical Digital Humanities Initiative (CDHI), is pleased to announce their Winter 2022 Visiting Speaker Series. Visiting Scholar Series events are free, online, and open to all. 

  • Jan 27 2022: Roopika Risam (Salem State University) on Postcolonial DH
  • Feb 16 2022: Catherine Knight Steele (University of Maryland-College Park) on Digital Black Feminism, co-hosted by the Black Research Network
  • Mar 10 2022: Angus Mol (Leiden University) on Games as Playful Time Machines
  • Apr 7 2022: Kimberly Christen (Washington State University) on Indigenous Data and Archives 

INSPIRE Scholars Drug Discovery Program

CMC-IMIx Interdisciplinary Summer Program in Research and Entrepreneurship (INSPIRE) is a four-week, competitive program primarily geared toward 3rd and 4th year undergraduate students. Students will get immersive, hands-on training in drug discovery taught by distinguished U of T faculty and industry experts. Running June 13th to July 8th, this year's program will focus on "GPCR Pharmacology." Registration closes February 25th, 2022.


Beth Coleman, an associate professor at the Institute of Communication, Culture, Information and Technology at U of T Mississauga, is the inaugural director of the Black Research Network (photo by Brooke Williams)
October 8th marked the launch of the Black Research Network, a university-wide initiative to support research excellence among Black faculty and students. Beth Coleman, Associate Professor at ICCIT and the network's inaugural director spoke with U of T News about the new initiative and what it means for Black scholars at U of T.

Professor Andrew Beharry from the Department of Chemical and Physical Sciences was awarded a Research Grant from the Brain Tumor Foundation of Canada for his research project Predicting Temozolomide Resistance in Glioblastoma using an Activity-based Fluorescent Chemosensor for MGMT

Doug Vanderlaan, Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology, was recently featured in The Medium for being a globally recognized scholar in gender identity. His expertise focuses in particular on trans youth, and, among his various projects, he explores what children think about gender stereotypes. 
Laurel Besco Assistant Professor Geography, Geomatics and Environment
Laurel Besco, Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography, Geomatics and Environment and Institute for Management and Innovation, recently co-authored a new article in the Journal of Environmental Law. In "Improving Energy Efficiency: The Significance of Normativity," her research with Elizabeth Kirk, Director of the U.K.'s Lincoln Centre for Ecological Justice, uses new empirical data to investigate the failure of energy efficiency regulatory frameworks at achieving energy efficient norms of behaviour in industry.  
The Critical Digital Humanities Initiative, led by DHN Director and Professor Elspeth Brown, was featured by U of T News this past week as part of a series about U of T's Institutional Strategic Initiatives (ISI) program. The CDHI launched earlier this year, and is one of 19 projects supported by the ISI; it supports trans-disciplinary collaborations that emphasize questions of power, social justice, and critical theory in digital humanities research. 

UTM has opened a new centre for diabetes research — one of the biggest collaborations between industry and public health in Canada's history. The new $40 million Novo Nordisk Network for Healthy Populations at UTM will carry out research, education and outreach to reduce the risk of people developing diabetes. 
Andreas Park was recently awarded a limited-term professorship with the Canadian Securities Institute Foundation. The finance professor from the Department of Management will be acting as a liaison to industry representatives as well as undertaking research until 2024. The CSI Research Foundation provides funds and support to academic professionals studying Canadian capital markets.
Professor Emeritus David Dunlop has been awarded the 2021 John Adam Fleming Medal by the American Geophysical Union (AGU), to be presented in New Orleans on December 15th. The Fleming Medal is awarded for "scientific achievement and leadership in geomagnetism, aeronomy, space physics and related sciences" — the Olympic Gold Medal in geophysics! He sat down with UTM News to talk about his impressive career.
U of T Mississauga faculty members from a range of disciplines illuminate the inner workings of the science labs and enlighten the social sciences and humanities hubs in interviews with podcast host Carla DeMarco. Listen in!
Headshots of four UTM senior researchers

Senior Research Associates

What exactly is an SRA? In this new episode of View to the U, Carla DeMarco sits down with Drs. Katie Harris-Howard, Elizabeth Parke, Dmitry Pichugin, and Vera Velasco from the Office of the Vice-Principal, Research at UofT Mississauga to talk about their roles.

New & Notable

Professor Ken Derry's chapter “Writing Home: Diaspora, Identity, and Religion in Halfbreed and In Search of April Raintree," was published in Relation and Resistance: Racialized Women, Religion and Diaspora.  

Professor David Samson was recently featured in Discover Magazine for his research into accurately predicting how much sleep each species needs. 

Could the Gulf Stream Collapse? Professor Kent Moore discusses the likelihood with Steve Paikin on The Agenda.

Professor Jordache Ellapen recently published two articles — one in Feminist Formations and the other in Feminist Studies — on his research concerning gender and sexuality in South Africa. 

On an October episode of View to the U, Professor Kristen Bos talked about her research on Indigenous feminisms, which, among other things, considers the past, present, and future of seed beads.

Professor Sarah Hillewaert is one of the faculty leads editing the undergraduate journal, Young Anthropology. Explore the new issue — now available! 

In an article published in the Journal of Morphology and reported on in U of T News, Professor Lauren Schroeder and research team showed that hybrid species like the 'coywolf' could hold clues about evolutionary history.

Professor Kent Moore was recently featured in CBC News commenting on the climate crisis and how rain-on-snow events would cause "incredible" stress on hairy animals in the Arctic. 

In an interview with CTV News, Professor Paul Ashwell discussed the LA Palma volcanic eruption that began on September 19th and is still active.


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