Nicolas Brunet, Ph.D. Candidate

B.Sc. Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (2003) McGill University; M.Sc. Rural Planning and Development (2006) University of Guelph, Canada.


Interests: Rural development; Politics of knowledge; Regional planning; Environmental policy and decision-making; Public participation.


Research Summary:

Stakeholder Participation in Natural Resource Science in the North: The Case of Old Crow, Yukon Territory

The North is changing, as is northern research; from participatory methodologies and more stringent licensing procedures to new ethical requirements, researchers and other stakeholders are now being challenged more than ever to consult, employ and communicate with northern communities (1,2,3). In response, funding programs and agencies have adopted strategies promoting cross-cultural collaboration, public participation and local involvement in science (4). This study promises to uncover the nature of the partnerships being fostered in northern Natural Resource Science research as a result of such programs. This will be achieved through the application of a participatory research framework in the study of research activities and collaborations undertaken through the NSERC Northern Research Chair Program in partnership with the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation of Old Crow, Yukon Territory (5). As such, it will serve to inform research policy regarding the development of participatory research programs for the Natural Sciences in the North and elsewhere. It will also provide the foundations for the development of new tools for public engagement that are specifically adapted to the Natural Sciences.

1. ACUNS (2003). Ethical Principles for the Conduct of Research in the North. D. o. I. a. N. Affairs. Ottawa.

2. Gearheard, S. and J. Shirley (2007). "Challenges in community-research relationships: Learning from natural science in Nunavut." Arctic 60(1): 62-74.

3. Pearce, T. D., J. D. Ford, et al. (2009). "Community collaboration and climate change research in the Canadian Arctic." Polar Research 28(1): 10-27.

4. NSERC. (2009). "Northern Research Chairs Program." Retrieved July 29, 2009, from <>.

5. Renn, O., T. Webler, et al., Eds. (1995). Fairness and competence in citizen participation: Evaluating models for environmental discourse. London, Kluwer Academic Publishers.


Awards and Scholarships:

Bourse de Doctorat- Fonds Québécois sur la Recherche et la Cuture 2010-2013

Northern Scientific Training Program Grant 2010-2011

McGill - SSHRC Internal Grant 2010-2011

Graduate Research Assistantship (2009-2012), Northern Research Chair in Wildlife Biology and Traditional Food Security in Canada's Changing North.

Provost's Graduate Fellowship (2009), McGill University.

Bourse de la Faculté des Études Supérieures de l`Université de Montréal (2006).

Southwestern Ontario- Ontario Professional Planners Institute Scholarship (2005).

Robb Research Travel Grant (2006), University of Guelph.

Latornelle Graduate Research Travel Scholarship (2005), University of Guelph.

Herbert F. Crown Memorial Scholarship (2005), University of Guelph.

University Graduate Scholarship (2004 & 2005) University of Guelph.

Rural Planning & Development Research Travel Grant (2005) University of Guelph.


Demonstrator Positions and Teaching Assistantships:

ENVR203 Knowledge, Ethics and the Environment

NRSC437 Assessing Environmental Impact


Conference Presentations:

Brunet, N.D., Hickey, G.M., Humphries, M.M. (2012). Understanding community participation in the environmental sciences: Factors and outcomes. Oral presentation at the he Canadian Association of Geographers’ (CAG) 2012 Annual Conference and Meeting: “Toward Integration”. Waterloo, ON, Canada. 28 May – 2 June, 2012.

Brunet, N.D., Hickey, G.M., Humphries, M.M. (2012).The evolution of community participation and the mode of knowledge production in arctic and environmental change research. Oral presentation at the International Polar Year (IPY) 2012 Conference: “From Knowledge to Action”. Montreal, QC, Canada. 22-27 April 2012.

Brunet, N. and Hickey, G.M. (2010). Public policy and research in Canada’s North: Promoting partnerships in the natural resource sciences. International Conference on Science in Society, Madrid, Spain, November 2010.

"Exploring Stakeholder Perceptions Regarding the Benefits of Natural Science Research in Canada`s North: Processes and Outcomes". Association for Canadian Universities in Northern Studies Conference, October 2009, Whitehorse, Yukon.

“Agriculture on the Edge: Farming models that bridge the urban-rural divide” Bridging Borders Towards Food Security Conference. October 2006, Vancouver, British-Columbia.

“Innovations in Near-Urban Agriculture: Can Farming Persist in the Urban Shadow?” The annual conference of the Agricultural Institute of Canada. November 2005, Quebec, Quebec.

“Innovations in Near-Urban Agriculture: Can Farming Persist in the Urban Shadow?” The annual conference of the Ontario Professional Planners Institute. September 2005, Hamilton, Ontario.



Brunet, N.D., Hickey, G.M. and Humphries, M.M. The evolution of local participation and the mode of knowledge production in Arctic research. Ecology & Society: Accepted.

Brunet, N., Caldwell,W., Hilts, S. In Review. Agricultural Adaptation in the Peri-Urban Space: Farmer perceptions and farm model trends. The Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Community Development.

Hickey, G.M., Brunet, N. and Allan, N. (2010). A constant comparison of the Environmental Assessment legislation in Canada. Journal of Environmental Policy & Planning 12(3): 315-329

Brunet, N. 2007. Farmland preservation and farm level adaptation: approaches to preserving and promoting agricultural activities in the peri-urban space. In. Wilton, B., S. Hilts & W. Caldwell. (Eds.). 2007. Farmland Preservation: Challenges and Opportunities. Volumes Publishing, Kitchener, Ontario.

Hilts, S., Caldwell, W., Brunet, N. & Thibodeau, M. 2006. La Protection du territoire agricole: Approches innovatrices en Ontario. Urbanité: December 2006.