Thursday, February 05, 2009

Score another one for the Liberal/Conservative coalition.

I hadn't noticed this:
"Insanity," claimed Albert Einstein, "is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”. By that definition, the government's current budget plan for SSHRC scholarships is surely insane. Fully 100% of all new graduate funding in the social sciences is being restricted to "business-related degrees". Wait a minute. Wasn't it folks with business-related degrees who got us into this recession in the first place? Why support more of the same?
I suppose it's a good thing that I'm outside my eligibility for SSHRC doctoral funding, but, seriously, WTF? It's not enough that the Liberal/Conservative coalition doesn't want to fund genetic research, now they don't want to fund anyone in any social science or humanities discipline, unless they're in a "business-related degree"? These people really don't seem to get that the only thing that can build Canada's economy for the future is getting a more educated, and better-educated, citizenry, which includes providing decent funding for graduate studies. Otherwise, people are going to leave the country to get their degrees -- and probably not come back.


janfromthebruce said...

I'm so disgusted. And the Liberals supported this. I guess they wouldn't want to support any social sciences, such as history cause you sure don't want folks to super knowledgeable about that.
I started my Ph.D. and am on leave. In am in the social sciences, and in adult education and community development. Unless another grant comes my way, I guess I won't be returning to finish my degree.
Mr. Academic Iggy supported this - swallowed another poison pill to took a shot at academia. Way to go Iggy.

ADHR said...

I'm not sure history counts as a social science rather than a humanity -- although, really, it doesn't matter, as both are getting it in the teeth thanks to the grand coalition. Iggy himself is a historian who studied with a philosopher (Isaiah Berlin), so that he supported this is utterly incomprehensible. I suspect Dion -- a sociologist -- would've fought an election rather than adopt something this stupid.

Is there any internal funding you can draw from? You should speak to your supervisor about any possibilities that might be open to help you get enough funding to finish; don't let Iggy's opportunism destroy the work you've put in. There might be internal scholarships, research assistantships, completion funds, something like that.

Chrystal Ocean said...

As a pointed out in my own post on this topic, by definition SSHRC grants are for graduate students in the SOCIAL SCIENCES and HUMANITIES - neither of which, without contortionist efforts, are "business-related." Ergo, it will be a fortunate student indeed who gets one penny of that $17 million supposedly allocated for SSHRC grants.

True, a philosophy student whose dissertation is going to be on business ethics might, just might, get funding, provided he/she can show how the dissertation might enhance the bottom line, the GDP. But the value of the work for its own sake won't make the cut. Same for grads in the other humanities (including history, languages, the literary and performing arts) or social science fields.

janfromthebruce said...

Thanks ADHR. Yes, I know about other options, and they are helpful but not stable funding or adequate. The SSHRC is the best.

ADHR said...


Yeah, SSHRC is the best combination of both stability and decent levels of funding. OGS is stable, but pretty low -- $15K over three terms at most. Internal funding and work-based funding are usually not reliable. Still, you might be able to cobble something together to allow you to keep going. I'd just hate to see Iggy's stupidity (oo, that rhymes!) derail your program.


Actually, if you look here, you'll see that one of the review committees is devoted to business (Committee 5). So, business grads are considered to fall under the ambit of SSHRC. Indeed, given the scope of Committee 5, it seems that the idea is to focus the vast majority (if not all) applications towards them.

Socially Active said...

I think something happened. Was it the back lash against Israel in the Gaza strip? Was it just that the budget the NDP and Bloc required too liberal?

I does not mater. Michael, I doubt he is alone, found he had more in common with the Conservatives under Harper the he did with his fellow Liberals and especially the NDP and Bloc. A choice was made. It was not a mistake.

Things have changed.

The Liberals and Conservatives have made peace.