Institute of Indigenous Research and Studies front entrance

Institute of Indigenous Research and Studies

Welcome to the Institute of Indigenous Research and Studies (IIRS) at the University of Ottawa!


From its inception to the present, interdisciplinarity has been the raison d'être of IIRS. As expressed in a 2010 document that addresses the future directions of the Institute, collaboration across academic fields remains at the core of the programs offered by IIRS today. In addition, the research produced by IIRS-affiliated researchers continues to have international reach and relevance. Knowledge dissemination and stakeholder engagement are central to the goals of IIRS and its partners. Since the release of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada's Calls to Action, the academic community has recognized and affirmed its responsibilities to Indigenous Peoples, Nations, and communities. However, these responsibilities are not confined to the boundaries of the Canadian state. As IIRS's strategic planning moves forward, we hope to create a future of participation and representation by and for Indigenous Peoples at the University of Ottawa. To this end, we aim to develop collaborative partnerships and arrangements, and to build ongoing and reciprocal relationships with Indigenous communities, Nations and Peoples that will endure.

Sign that says hello in various Indigenous languages
Photo by Bonnie Findley
The Institute logo of red berries and green leaves

Our logo

IIRS chose the bearberry (kinnikinnick in the Algonquin language) for its logo since it is a plant found in all parts of North America, from the plains and parklands to the subarctic and tundra. The name of the plant in English derives from the edible red berry which is a favourite of bears, but it is also a fruit that humans can eat. In Indigenous traditions, however, the leaves are used as a traditional form of tobacco, thus, the word kinnikinnick refers to this use of the plant. As an edible native plant with medicinal properties, this plant has proven itself to be both resilient and powerful.
Design by Spruce Creative

Contact us

Institute of Indigenous Research and Studies (IIRS)

William Commanda Hall
52 University Private
Ottawa ON Canada K1N 6N5

Tel.: 613-562-5111
Fax: 613-562-5216
[email protected]

Office Hours

Monday to Friday
From 8:45 a.m. to 12 p.m.
From 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
(June to August: closed at 3:30 p.m.)

Academic assistants

Undergraduate studies
Simard Hall, room 128
[email protected]

Graduate studies 
Simard Building, room 416.
613 562-5800 ext. 5439
[email protected]  

Indigenous Affirmation

We pay respect to the Algonquin people, who are the traditional guardians of this land. We acknowledge their longstanding relationship with this territory, which remains unceded. 

We pay respect to all Indigenous people in this region, from all nations across Canada, who call Ottawa home. 

We acknowledge the traditional knowledge keepers, both young and old. And we honour their courageous leaders: past, present, and future. 

Learn more about the Indigenous Affirmation.