For the second year in a row, Professor Guy Lachapelle from Concordia’s Department of Political Science has been named to Montreal’s Palais des congrès’ Ambassadors’ Club.
He received the honour with four other individuals during a Recognition Award Gala, attended by more than 600 guests. The lavish gathering capped off the third edition of the Rendez-vous du Savoir, an event organized to highlight the important contributions made by Quebec’s universities.
Lachapelle, Michel Béland, Jean Gotman, Wagdi Habashi, and Richard Villemur were named ambassadors because of their efforts in bringing large-scale international conventions to the city.
Marc Tremblay, President and CEO of the Palais des congrès, thanked the ambassadors for their contributions, which, he said, “ensures that Montreal will continue to be the premier host city for international meetings, and in the process, will help generate invaluable intellectual spinoffs.”
Lachapelle, who is the elected secretary-general of the International Political Science Association (IPSA), was first named an ambassador in 2011 for attracting the upcoming 23rd World Congress of Political Science to Montreal, scheduled for July 2014.
This year, Lachapelle was named to the prestigious club for securing Montreal as the host city for the second World Social Science Forum (WSSF), to take place in October 2013.
When organizers in China bailed on their commitment to host the second edition of the forum, the organizers from the International Social Science Council (ISSC) were desperately looking for a new host city. They soon came calling on Lachapelle.
“For the ISSC, Montreal was clearly the best option. I guess because they know me!” he said. “The ISSC is a federation to which IPSA belongs.”
The theme of the conference is Social Transformations and the Digital Age. “New technology is shaping our perspectives and ways of seeing the world,” Lachapelle says. “We have not only to look back but also to see how these new technologies will influence our way of thinking.”
The forum is expected to bring more than 1,000 delegates to Montreal and contribute more than $2 million to the city's economy. Although Lachapelle admits that hosting the event will be a major challenge, he insists it’s worth it.
“The decision undeniably reflects Montreal's reputation as a hub of higher learning,” said Lachapelle last March when the win was announced. “The forum will provide a unique opportunity to discuss the key issues facing the social sciences, the challenges they pose and their repercussions on society, industry, and the environment in particular."
• Palais des congrès
• Recognition Award Gala
• Guy Lachapelle
• International Political Science Association
• World Social Science Forum