Themes and Objectives

Conference Themes

Based on a review of the literature, we have organized the conference around 4 critical themes for catalyzing institutional change:

  • Advances in Community-Engaged Scholarship: How is CES defined and conceptualized in different institutional, disciplinary and community contexts? What are the characteristics of quality CES? How are new funding opportunities for knowledge mobilization and transfer, research on collaborative models, changes in ethics protocols and more leading to changes in research practice and policy?
  • The Development of Community-Engaged Scholars: What do we know about faculty interest and motivation as engaged scholars? What are the competencies required to excel in CES? What do we know about preparing graduate students for faculty careers in CES? Where are the supports and incentives needed to develop engaged faculty? What do we know about the development of community-based scholars who serve as teachers, mentors and researchers alongside their university-based counterparts?
  • Structures and Policies that Support Community-Engaged Scholarship: What are current considerations in creating faculty promotion and tenure policies that support CES? What indicators of quality and impact are appropriate for CES? How can institutional structures such as community based learning centres, research or science shops, or offices of research contribute to supporting CES?
  • Strategies for Institutional ChangeWhat institutional change models work in the higher education context to support CES? How do universities (or schools or departments within) strategically align mission, action and policies to strengthen engagement more broadly? How do differing contexts and practices (faculty agreements, strategic plans, funding sources, promotion and tenure) either facilitate or hinder movement towards being an “engaged campus”?

Conference Objectives

  1. To provide a forum for communicating current research on university policies and practices around community-engaged scholarship from national and international perspectives, specifically focusing on institutional structures and processes, faculty development programs, and faculty promotion and tenure policies
  2. To create an opportunity for discussing the implications of this research for the design of institutional structures, faculty development programs, and faculty promotion and tenure policies in the Canadian context
  3. To foster the development of research collaborations to further the study of community-engaged scholarship in Canadian higher education
  4. To generate greater awareness, understanding and visibility of community engagement challenges and strategies among key stakeholders in order to catalyze institutional change within the academy.

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