Indigenous Research Support Team
Supporting Indigenous Research
The Indigenous Research Support Team (IRST) is a pilot project launched within Research Services to better support and strengthen Indigenous-related research capacity at the University of Calgary. The project commenced in 2019 with the identification of several challenges being overcome by Indigenous faculty members and within research that is carried out in Indigenous environments. The intention of the project is to strengthen and identify existing resources for Indigenous communities and stakeholders, university researchers, and further partners to promote collaborative, reciprocal, and culturally responsive research.
IRST serves to provide the opportunity for Indigenous communities to connect with a research body that can help to facilitate and identify the endeavours they would like to explore. IRST will be the point of contact for all university researchers doing any work within the broader Indigenous landscape, including with Indigenous communities and on Indigenous lands.
Amber Bedard, Manager, Indigenous Research Support Team
Alexandra Kanters, Indigenous Research Ethics and Process Specialist
Kimberly Van Patten, Research Coordinator
Shayla Scott, Research Coordinator (Health)
Researchers and Academics
IRST is an advisory entity that can provide guidance to researchers and scholars on the proper processes to adhere to within Indigenous research. IRST will be the point of contact for all UCalgary researchers doing any work within the broader Indigenous landscape.
The support offered promotes opportunities for culturally responsive, collaborative research whereby community interests and perspectives are affirmed and there is mutual benefit in all processes. IRST can assist with providing cultural awareness training and preparation, and help resolve tensions where necessary. Further, IRST can assist with providing guidance on ethics, advising, and data management considerations.
IRST acts as a touch point where Indigenous communities, entities, and organizations can directly inquire and ask information. IRST can help communities and leadership interface with a broader research network, facilitating meaningful partnerships and opportunities to produce collaborations that reflect the needs and ambitions of community.
IRST can assist with administrative work, including funding negotiations, application processes, the development of research agreements, and engagement protocols. IRST believes that the foundation for good research is always respectful, collaborative, and reciprocal.
The University of Calgary, located in the heart of Southern Alberta, both acknowledges and pays tribute to the traditional territories of the people of Treaty 7, which includes the Backfoot Confederacy (comprised of the Siksika, the Piikuni, the Kainai First Nations), the Stoney Nakoda (including Chiniki, Bearpaw, and Wesley First Nations) and Tsuut’ina First Nation. The university also recognizes that the City of Calgary is also home to Region III of the Metis Nation of Alberta. By virtue of the signing of Treaty 7 in 1877, the university recognizes that we are all treaty people.