At this point in time, my research activities can be separated into two distinct streams, which are very different in nature. In the first stream, I have published work related to my doctoral dissertation, which examined the evolution of the nationalist mobilization strategies of the Parti Quebecois and the Scottish National Party primarily from the post-war period to 1995. The thesis made a contribution to the academic literature on nationalism by moving beyond the confines of the narrow primordialist-instrumentalist debate that underpins much of the research in this area. A few of my early conference papers presented various aspects of this dissertation research and I have published two articles from this material in the British Journal of Canadian Studies. The first article, by examining the 1980 and 1995 referendum debates in the national assembly, specifically addresses how the PQ's rhetoric shifted over time to account for the realities of regional integration and globalization. The second piece examines how globalization and regional integration altered the rhetoric used by both the PQ and Scottish National Party in their respective quests for independence.
My second research stream, which has been my focus since I secured a tenure-track appointment, is in the area of public administration with my primary interest being public sector leadership. The first research project I was involved with in this stream was a collaborative effort with William Coleman at McMaster University shortly after completing my doctorate. We conducted a study on French-English relations in comprehensive business interest associations in Canada, which was part of a larger research project that was designed to update the important background work undertaken for the Royal Commission on Bilingualism and Biculturalism. We published an abbreviated version of that work in Canadian Public Administration and have also contributed a chapter to an edited book (David Cameron and Richard Simeon, eds. Language Matters: How Canadian Voluntary Associations Manage French and English. (Vancouver: UBC Press, 2009), 23-51). The bulk of my research efforts in the sub-discipline of public administration have been to examine various aspects of administrative and political leadership. My contributions to this area are growing and have the potential to make a significant impact given that neither political science nor public administration has devoted much scholarly analysis to the theory and practice of leadership. Some of my earliest research efforts in this area were funded by the Canadian Forces Leadership Institute and examined various aspects of leadership as they relate to the unique culture of the Canadian military establishment.
My research then explored more broadly a number of philosophical and practical issues related to leadership in the public sector, including whether it is a misnomer to refer to public sector leadership given that the concept of bureaucratic leadership is antithetical to our historic understanding of the link between bureaucracy and democracy as exemplified in the politics-administration dichotomy, and whether it is possible to develop public service leaders at all levels. More recently, I completed a study that undertakes a comparative analysis of leadership core competency models for public servants across the various hierarchical levels of the bureaucracy and I published an article in the International Review of Administrative Sciences on leadership competencies for a global public service.
At the same time as I have been building my expertise in the area of public sector leadership, I have also been contributing more broadly to the sub-discipline of public administration. As a result of a research conference that I helped to organize, I have co-edited a volume (along with Byron Sheldrick and O.P. Dwivedi) that examines the transition of Canadian public administration. I have co-authored two chapters in this book, which also includes contributions from the most prominent public administration scholars in the country. My second co-edited book (with Neelam Trivedi, Dhirendra Vajpeyi and S.P. Dwivedi) was released in 2013: Perspectives on Governance and Society. (Jaipur: Rawat Publications), 338pp, which includes a number of essays in honour of Professor O.P. Dwivedi on topics for which he was world renowned: public ethics and governance; religion/spirituality and the environment. In 2017, Paul Barker and I published Public Administration in Canada 2nd ed. (Toronto: Nelson), which is one of the main textbooks on Canadian public administration.
While I would be especially interested in supervising graduate or honours thesis students who have an interest in political or bureaucratic leadership, I am also willing and able to work with students who intend to conduct research in any area of public management or administration.
SSHRC Doctoral Scholarship
Commonwealth Scholarship (United Kingdom)
Ontario Graduate Scholarship