James MacKillop is one of two McMaster professors who are joining the Royal Society of Canada's College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists, the country's first national system to recognize multidisciplinary work in emerging intellectual leaders.
The Peter Boris Chair in Addictions Research and professor of psychiatry and behavioural neurosciences specializes in the causes and treatments of addictions. The second is Chandrima Chakraborty, a professor of English and cultural studies, who is an expert on the 1985 Air India bombings and post-9/11 violence against South Asians.
"I am very honoured to be inducted into the Royal Society's College of New Scholars and am in very august company," says MacKillop. "It is a very welcome recognition of the multidisciplinary approach we apply in the Peter Boris Centre for Addictions Research and the Michael G. DeGroote Centre for Medicinal Cannabis Research. Although it is challenging, the questions we are asking cannot be answered by any single discipline, so multiple lens are essential to advance the field."
The College, launched in 2014, joins the Royal Society's academies of arts, humanities and science, and recognizes scholars, artists and scientists in the early stages in their career – gathering influential thinkers together in a single group in order to foster multidisciplinary perspectives on a variety of issues.
Membership in the College is for up to seven years, and up to 80 members are recognized annually.
"This is an important recognition of multidisciplinary, community-engaged research," says Chakraborty. "I hope it will allow me to continue to advance understanding of different, little-known and difficult histories, and facilitate informed, public engagement with diverse knowledge-holders.
"I am delighted to have this opportunity to enrich local, national and global conversations on public memory and cultural history and interact with a wider community of interdisciplinary Canadian scholars at the RSC."
"My sincere congratulations to Professor Chakraborty and Professor MacKillop," says David Farrar, McMaster's acting president. "This prestigious recognition is a well-deserved acknowledgement of their commitment to rigorous scholarship and their accomplishments within their respective fields."