UBC has been chosen as the headquarters of the Western Education
and Training Research Network, which will examine and assess policy
issues and initiatives in education and training.
The Western Network is one of five major research networks in education
and training launched Dec. 5 by the Social Sciences and Humanities
Research Council (SSHRC) to identify the links among learning and
economic success, training and Canada’s international competitiveness,
and education, innovation and the evolving training needs of Canada.
Led by Educational Studies Prof. Jane Gaskell, the network will
investigate various research topics such as how the educational
choices made by different learners — including women, seniors and
visible minorities — and types of educational programs offered
affect labour market outcomes.
Gaskell emphasized the importance of the network’s collaboration
with many people in different disciplines and its close links with
partners outside the university.
“This improves not only the quality and the impact of the research,
but also its complexity,” Gaskell said.
“We hope to produce research that will tell us more about what
the outcome of education and training are, and what kinds of programs
achieve what kinds of results for whom.”
In total, SSHRC will invest $5.6 million in the program. Senior
researchers based at universities in B.C., Ontario and Quebec will
head the five networks, with more than 140 colleagues from universities
in all 10 provinces also participating. They will collaborate with
representatives from approximately 150 community organizations,
industry, school boards and provincial government departments.
The Western Education and Training Research network will receive
a grant of $225,000 per year for the next five years.