Three University of Guelph professors were named today to the College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists.
Integrative biology professor Andrew MacDougall, environmental sciences professor Nigel Raine, and Prof. Carla Rice, Family Relations and Applied Nutrition, were selected by the College. They will be inducted at a Nov. 24 ceremony in Winnipeg.
Created by the Royal Society of Canada (RSC) in 2014, the College recognizes academics who have made exceptional contributions to their fields within 15 years of completing their doctoral degrees. In all, 70 people were selected from 242 nominees.
“Professors MacDougall, Raine and Rice epitomize University of Guelph’s strengths as a research-intensive University,” said Malcolm Campbell, vice-president (research). “The U of G community is delighted with this immensely deserved recognition of our researchers.”
Charlotte Yates, provost and vice-president (academic), added: “These scholars have proven to be exceptional in their teaching and scholarship. As a University, we are thrilled with this recognition of their achievements.”
MacDougall studies how humans affect diversity and functioning of environmental systems around the planet.
“Much of the work in our lab is cross-disciplinary, emphasizing fundamental ecological processes within the context of human-based environmental change,” MacDougall said.
“Scientific and socio-economic factors are increasingly intertwined, with solutions to global environmental challenges requiring consideration of both. Joining the New Scholars program will hopefully foster new collaborative possibilities for our research group.”
Raine, holder of the Rebanks Family Chair in Pollinator Conservation, studies pollinator behaviour, ecology and conservation research.
“As a newcomer to Canada, this honour is particularly special as it feels like a welcome from Canada’s academic establishment,” said Raine, who emigrated from Britain in 2014.
“Around a third of the food we eat depends on the activity of pollinators. It is imperative we understand the interacting factors driving global pollinator declines. We need to support healthy and diverse wild pollinator communities to sustain agricultural production and natural plant biodiversity.”
Rice said her work is necessary in helping people relate across differences and address power in affirmative ways, challenging the impulses that fuel war and conflict.
“I care about centring marginalized people’s voices and perspectives, and to the extent that this award centres marginalized vantage points, then this much-needed work is affirmed,” she said.
“Creative and arts-based research methods are often considered soft and disposable, but this award recognizes the importance of these methods for fostering difficult dialogue and creating inclusive communities.”
John Livernois, associate vice-president (research services) who oversaw the nomination process, said the research expertise of all three faculty members helped set them apart.
“Each of these faculty members is a highly renowned researcher, taking their findings and offering real-world solutions that improve life. Their research is leading to positive and lasting change,” he said.