Together with Drs. Mary Egan and Judy King, and with funding from the Canada Foundation for Innovation and the Ontario Research Fund, I recently established the Creative Practices Centre in the Faculty of Health Sciences, School of Rehabilitation Sciences at the University of Ottawa. The CPC will support interdisciplinary research aimed at improving the quality of life for those with chronic illnesses, such as cancer. The emphasis of the CPC will be engaging with creative practices, such as photography and drama, as forms of support and as strategies of knowledge translation.
Previously, with Dr. Ulrich Teucher and with funding from the Canada Foundation for Innovation, I co-founded the Qualitative Research Centre (QRC) at the University of Saskatchewan. Like the CPC, this centre provides facilities, expertise, and capacity to bridge divisions between qualitative and quantitative research approaches through the creation of research synergies. One hallmark of qualitative research is its participatory dimension. Both the QRC and the CPC have meeting rooms and communication facilities for researchers to meet with participants and key stakeholders. The facilities also promote collaborative relationships between researchers, providing space for them to meet in person and/or electronically in order to foster the expansion of qualitative and mixed methods research.
The QRC has hosted three very successful conferences, as well as a fourth in collaboration with the new Creative Practices Centre in June 2014 in Ottawa. The Innovations in Qualitative Research Conferences (IQRC) have featured well known qualitative researchers, such as Ron Pelias, Christina Sinding, Carolyn Ellis, and Art Bochner. A performance by Brian Lobel was featured in lieu of a keynote presentation in 2008. In 2012, our first graduate student keynote was delivered by Julie Easley.