David Phipps, executive director of research and innovation services and adjunct professor in the Faculty of Graduate Studies, has been nominated and selected by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) as one of three finalists for the prestigious SSHRC Impact Award, recognizing his outstanding achievements in postsecondary knowledge mobilization.
Phipps, who has been nominated in the Connection Award category, which has a prize valued at $50,000, has been instrumental in building York’s Knowledge Mobilization Unit. Through a series of partnered collaborations, the unit has worked with 231 community and government organizations in York Region and the Greater Toronto Area, including the United Way York Region, Parkdale Activity & Recreation Centre, Nottawasaga Futures, Youth Emergency Shelter Services of Peterborough. Phipps has had a successful and sustained track record in SSHRC funding. The activities enabled by these grants have helped Phipps, research teams associated with these grants and collaborative partners to create 122 jobs and have generated more than $56 million in investments and funding for engaged scholarship as well as community programs and services.
His national leadership in knowledge mobilization is seen in the leadership of ResearchImpact, Canada’s knowledge mobilization network. Researchers, students and research partners in 10 universities in 9 communities across Canada are developing knowledge mobilization support services based in part by those Phipps developed at York. His expertise has also been used by agencies and universities in the United Kingdom, Australia, and the US and by a network of 24 African universities all of whom are seeking to develop an institutional capacity for knowledge mobilization. Phipps’ publishing in the knowledge mobilization blog, Mobilize This! has been viewed over 115,500 times by readers in 148 countries.
“David Phipps’ innovative work has transformed the flow and exchange of research knowledge within and especially beyond the academic community,” said Robert Haché, York’s vice-president research & innovation. “The impacts of his work on Canadian research, community organizations, government policy, and the Canadian economy are dramatic, exciting and unparalleled. He is recognized nationally and internationally for his leadership in knowledge mobilization. The award nomination is well-deserved.”
The Connection Award recognizes an outstanding SSHRC-funded initiative to facilitate the flow and exchange of research knowledge within and/or beyond the academic community. It is given to an individual or team whose project has engaged the campus and/or wider community and has generated intellectual cultural, social and or/economic impact.
Phipps has also been named the most influential knowledge broker in Canada in 2011 and 2012, according to a report by Knowledge Mobilization Works, a consulting and training company based in Ottawa and he was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012 for his work in knowledge mobilization. In 2012, York’s Knowledge Mobilization Unit received a global best practice award from the EU based Knowledge Economy Network.
The announcement of the winners will be made at a ceremony during the World Social Science Forum in Montreal on Oct. 15.