University of Ottawa professors join the prestigious Royal Society of Canada

royal society of canada
Awards and recognition
profile picture of the nominees
First row, from left to right: Abel Brodeur, Aimée Craft, Nafissa Ismail; second row, from left to right: Manisha Kulkarni, André Lecours and Cynthia Sugars
Professors André Lecours and Cynthia Sugars have been elected to the Royal Society of Canada (RSC). This is the highest distinction that can be awarded to those engaged in scholarly endeavours or working in the arts or sciences in Canada.

Additionally, the College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists welcomed Professors Abel Brodeur, Aimée Craft and Manisha Kulkarni as members of its ninth cohort. Established by the RSC in 2014, the college recognizes rising stars whose early careers have demonstrated research excellence.

“We’re very proud to see brilliant members of our community receive these prestigious distinctions,” said Sylvain Charbonneau, vice-president, research and innovation. “Their innovative spirit is a source of inspiration for the next generation, eager to learn and in turn expand the frontiers of knowledge in crucial research areas for Canadians.”

André Lecours (Faculty of Social Sciences) is a full professor at the School of Political Studies of the University of Ottawa. His research looks at the origins, development, and consequences of nationalism, and also investigates federalism as a way of managing territorial diversity.

Cynthia Sugars (Faculty of Arts) is a professor of English at the University of Ottawa. Her research has helped lay the groundwork for the field of Canadian settler-colonial literary studies within broader international debates. Her richly historicized analyses have shaped fundamental discussions about some of the most pressing issues of our time, such as Indigenous-settler relations, multiculturalism, national identity, and Canada’s position in a global world. Her work has deepened our understanding of the ways by which Canadians have both imagined and interrogated stories of national belonging.

Abel Brodeur (Faculty of Social Sciences) is a professor in the Department of Economics who specializes in applied microeconomics in the areas of development, health, and labour economics. An important component of his current work examines the effects of mass shootings and terrorism. His research also develops and promotes methods for transparent social science research.

Aimée Craft (Faculty of Law – Common Law Section) holds the University Research Chair Nibi miinawaa aki inaakonigewin: Indigenous Governance in Relationship with Land and Water. She is also an internationally recognized expert on Indigenous-colonial relationships and water rights. Her research focuses on collaborating with Indigenous communities, governments, and non-governmental organizations to rethink water governance strategies and to enhance the contribution of Indigenous knowledge and perspectives in decision-making.

Nafissa Ismail (Faculty of Social Sciences, School of Psychology) holds the University Research Chair in Stress and Mental Health. Her research investigates the neurochemical mechanisms through which exposure to stress during critical periods of development, particularly during puberty and adolescence, alter behaviour and affect mental health. She aims to understand why females are more likely to develop mood disorders during puberty and adolescence than males. She is investigating the sex-dependent relationship between neuroinflammation, the gut-brain axis, and mental illness, and is working to find a way to prevent the development of mental illnesses during puberty and adolescence.

Manisha Kulkarni (Faculty of Medicine) is a professor at the School of Epidemiology and Public Health and is the assistant dean of global health. As a medical entomologist and public health scientist, she is interested in finding solutions to improve disease prevention and control. Her main research focus is vector-borne diseases in tropical and temperate regions of the world. With her team and her international partners, she has identified social and ecological factors driving the emergence and risk for Lyme disease and West Nile virus in Canada, dengue and Zika virus in Latin America, and malaria in sub-Saharan Africa, to inform public health interventions.

Learn more about the 2022 Royal Society of Canada and College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists cohorts.