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June 23, 2016

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June 23, 2016
For Immediate Release

WATERLOO – Sixteen Wilfrid Laurier University science researchers received a total of $1.8 million in funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council’s (NSERC) Discovery Grants Program to support excellence in research. The Laurier researchers represent disciplines ranging from biology and geography and environmental studies to mathematics and psychology.

“Our NSERC grant recipients demonstrate the breadth of scientific research and expertise being undertaken at Laurier,” said Robert Gordon, vice-president: research. “These researchers demonstrate not only innovative research themes, but they are also training the next generation of emerging scientists to lead the world in scientific discovery.”

Laurier has increased its success rate in the NSERC Discovery Grant competition for the past three years.

Philip Marsh, a professor of Geography and Environmental Studies, received funding for his work investigating Arctic lakes. As climate change begins to affect lake water levels in Northern Canada, past conditions are no longer a reliable indicator of future lake water levels or streamflow. This NSERC funding will allow Marsh and his research team to gather data and build models to explore how water, vegetation, permafrost and other natural features of the Canadian Arctic are changing.

“Understanding how the land is changing is important to the people living in the North,” said Marsh. “Presenting our data and analysis directly to local residents will allow them to make informed decisions concerning their lands, homes and resources.”

In recognition of the unique nature of northern research, Marsh also received a Discovery Grants Northern Research Supplement, designed to help augment and promote northern research and training.

The Discovery Grants Program is NSERC's largest and longest-standing program and a key element of Canada's support for excellence in science research and training at Canadian universities. Discovery grants are awarded based on recommendations from peer review committees consisting of experts in each of 12 science and engineering fields.

The following Laurier researchers have been awarded Discovery Grant funding for the next five years:

  • Hind Al-Abadleh, associate professor, Chemistry and Biochemistry
    • “Surface and Bulk Chemistry of Metals in Atmospherically-Relevant Systems that Impact Climate and Health”
  • Kathie Cameron, professor, Mathematics
    • “Graph Algorithms”
  • Shohini Ghose, associate professor, Physics and Computer Science
    • “Analysis and Control of Multipartite Quantum Interactions for Computation and Communication”
  • Robert Gordon, professor, Geography and Environmental Studies
    • “Improved Greenhouse Gas Mitigation for Manure Storage Systems in Cold Climates”
  • Tom Hazell, assistant professor, Kinesiology and Physical Education
    • “Appetite Regulation in Humans: Effect of Sex Hormones and Exercise Intensity”
  • William Hockley, professor, Psychology
    • “Incidental and Intentional Encoding of Associative Information in Human Memory” 
  • Jeffrey Jones, professor, Psychology
    • “Sensorimotor Control of Vocal Production”
  • Tristan Long, associate professor, Biology
    • “Ecology and Evolution of Sexual Selection”
  • Philip Marsh, professor, Geography and Environmental Studies
    • “Arctic Lakes: Past and Future Changes”
  • Connell McCluskey, professor, Mathematics
    • “Dynamics of Functional Differential Equations with Applications in Epidemiology”
  • Allison McDonald, associate professor, Biology
    • “The Physiological Role, Structure, and Regulation of Animal Alternative Oxidases”
  • Adam Metzler, assistant professor, Mathematics
    • “State Dependent Correlations in Finance”
  • Noam Miller, assistant professor, Psychology
    • “Collective Learning and Decision-Making in Animal Groups”
  • Colin Robertson, assistant professor, Geography and Environmental Studies
    • “Spatial Pattern Comparison Metrics for Detecting Environmental Change”

Read the NSERC announcement online.

This research was supported by the Research Support Fund.

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Robert Gordon, Vice-President
Wilfrid Laurier University

T: 519.884.0710 x3601


Kevin Crowley, Director
Communications & Public Affairs
Wilfrid Laurier University

T: 519.884.0710 x3070



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