2018 Research Achievement Awards

The Carleton University Research Achievement Awards are administered by the Office of the Vice-President (Research and International). The purpose of these awards is to recognize outstanding research achievements. The awards were established in 1989 to enhance the quality of research and to recognize research excellence. The recipients’ terms run from May to April.

Stephen Godfrey

Department of Physics, Faculty of Science

Project: New Directions Towards the Understanding of Dark Matter

Dark Matter comprises 85% of the mass in the universe yet we know virtually nothing about it. Understanding dark matter is one of the most pressing problems in physics. Dr. Godfrey is studying models of dark matter and how they can be constrained by both theoretical consistency and experimental measurements. The goal is to develop theoretical models that can describe dark matter and suggest new approaches to observe it. It is an exciting area of research that connects the physics of the smallest scales to that of the largest scales, and ties together the fields of particle physics, Big Bang cosmology and astrophysics.


James Green

Department of Systems and Computer Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Design

Project: Real-time Monitoring of Vibrations and Noise During Neonatal Patient Transport

Dr. Green and his team will develop methods to monitor neonates during emergency patient air or ground transport to CHEO. There is growing evidence that vibrations and accelerations experienced by patients during transport lead to potentially long-lasting negative health outcomes. Sensors and data analytics will be developed to measure vibrations, accelerations, audible noise, temperature, and air pressure during transport. In the future, a real-time wireless display will also be developed for use by clinicians during patient transport.

Norman Hillmer

Department History, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

Project: Canada and Peacekeeping: A Contradictory History

The blue beret of the United Nations peacekeeper is a familiar sight around the world, but peacekeeping seems to Canadians especially their own. Canadians believe, with some justice, that they invented the practice, so much so that peacekeeping has become crucial to the way in which Canada sees itself. Employing the frameworks of nationalism and national identity, conflict studies, and civil-military relations, Dr. Hillmer’s research aims at the first comprehensive account of Canadian peacekeeping.

Philip Kaisary

Department of Law and Legal Studies, Faculty of Public Affairs

Project: The Haitian Revolution and Rights: Liberation, Law, Poetics

Achieving the overthrow of colonialism, slavery, and racial inequality, the Haitian Revolution should be regarded as a world-historical event of paramount significance. Dr. Kaisary’s project comprises a study of the significance of the Haitian Revolution for rights theory and discourse, posing questions of human rights historiography and the production of global intellectual history. It will generate a monograph titled, “The Haitian Revolution and Rights: Liberation, Law, Poetics.”

Barbara Leckie

Department of English Language and Literature, and the Institute for the Comparative Study of Literature, Art, and Culture

Project: Unfinished: A Cultural History of Nineteenth-Century Procrastination

Dr. Leckie’s book project, “Unfinished: A Cultural History of Nineteenth-Century Procrastination” is inspired by the fact that much of the burgeoning material on procrastination of the last thirty years draws its examples from my research field, nineteenth century print and literary culture. And yet, to date, there has been no scholarly study of procrastination in this period. Indeed, there has been no historical study of procrastination at all. “Unfinished” accordingly fills this gap by turning to the nineteenth century when procrastination emerges as a personal problem with the rise of industrial modernity.

Marina Milyavskaya

Department of Psychology, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

Project:  Motivation and Obstacles to Healthy Eating: Situation Selection or Subjective Perception?

Although people regularly set and pursue goals such as eating healthy, these goals are frequently not attained. This research will investigate the role of motivation in how people inadvertently set up obstacles to their own goals in their environments, and how such obstacles are perceived. Through experimental work on healthy eating that helps us better understand the process of goal pursuit, the ultimate aim of this research is to develop strategies to help people attain their personal goals and live a healthier life.

Luciara Nardon

Sprott School of Business

Project: Newcomers’ Career Advancement

This proposed research aims to uncover the role of various types of social support in the career path of newcomers through a qualitative study of professional migrants working in Canada. This interdisciplinary study will contribute to social support theory by further elaborating on the role of social support in long-term workplace integration of migrants. This study has important implications to organizations engaged with newcomers both as employers or in supporting roles as well as the potential to inform policies related to professional migration.

Hanika Rizo

Department of Earth Sciences, Faculty of Science

Project: Establishing a New Laboratory for the Study of Earth’s Earliest Times

How the Earth formed and how it evolved through time are fundamental questions for Earth sciences. Opportunities to learn about the early history of the Earth have recently opened up with the development of analytical techniques that allow high-precision analysis of various radioactive isotopic systems. Dr. Rizo will establish an ultra-clean laboratory for high-precision isotope measurements in rocks. This new laboratory, together with Carleton’s advanced instrumentation, will permit the development of innovative analytical techniques that could shed light into the planetary processes that shaped our planet.

Thomas Sherratt

Department of Biology, Faculty of Science

Project: The Evolution of Flash Behaviour

Camouflaged species sometimes display conspicuous markings when fleeing from potential predators. This “flash behaviour” is seen in a wide range of animals from insects to amphibians. While several hypotheses have been proposed to explain it, none have been tested. Dr. Sherratt’s lab will conduct experiments to systematically test the hypotheses, and use comparative methods to help understand why some species flash, but not others. Collectively, this work will shed light on the selective advantages of a widespread yet counter-intuitive anti-predator defense.

Halim Yanikomeroglu

Department of Systems and Computer Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Design

Project: CAN-UAVs 2030 — Connected, Autonomous, and Networked UAVs Towards 2030s

The main objective of this project is to contribute to the envisioned widespread operation of UAVs as flying robots in 2030s, with autonomous operation (i.e., no human pilot on the ground), which can be connected and networked in a variety of ways. The communications and networking-related aspects will constitute the primary focus of this project, with emphasis on machine learning and big data analytics as enablers towards the autonomous operation.