I can't express how impressed I am by the work these folks have done and how grateful I am to them for taking the CDSN objectives and running with them. Below, I am posting the slides from my presentation that reported my take on where things stand.
I discussed the original goals set out in the SSHRC grant and suggested that we made clear progress in four and, well, hard to measure progress in the other two. How do we know we are helping to improve the defence and security literacy of Canadians? This is something we will be considering in the next few years.
The big challenges have been trying to get folks to apply for our opportunities. We get only handfuls of applications for our post-doc, for our book workshop, for our undergraduate excellence scholars. It has also been difficult to get larger audiences for our activities. Neither of these problems are unique to the CDSN as our friends in other networks have had similar problems. We need to get more creative and put more resources to get more folks to show up. I also suggested that we could do better communicating with each other. The Midterm Conference was partly aimed at addressing this.
Overall, I am most proud and pleased about what the CDSN has done and what it has become. As I told everyone, my role is mostly taking credit for everyone else's hard work. I am very grateful for the teams we have built--the staff at Carleton, the co-directors leading the research efforts, the advisory board, the emerging scholars, scientists, and policy makers that have contributed so much to our events, and the partners in academia, government, the military, and the private sector. And yes, I enjoy the associated dinners when we meet!