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Bill Reimer

Central team leader
Department of Sociology and Anthropology
Concordia University

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Bruno Jean

Governance team leader
Université du Québec à Rimouski

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Tom Beckley

Environment team leader
Faculty of Forestry and Environmental Management 
University of New Brunswick

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Greg Halseth

Services team leader
Department of Geography, UNBC

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David Bruce

Communications team leader
Director, Rural and Small Town Programme, Mount Allison University

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The New Rural Economy project provided the opportunity for 58 Concordia students to participate directly in ongoing social science research. As part of this national team of researchers and research assistants, NRE students have participated and presented at 11 national conferences and workshops, participated in fieldwork, data collection and analysis in 24 rural Canadian communities, authored or co-authored 41 published papers or reports, and have been team members on exchanges to Japan and Australia. NRE ‘alumni’ are now dispersed widely - working for NGO’s in Sierra Leone, for NATO in Sarajevo, doing research and teaching at US and Canadian universities, working as Senior Analysts for Health Canada, Statistics Canada, and Heritage Canada and completing MA’s and PhD’s at institutions across the country.


As a whole 120 BA, MA, PhD and Postdoctoral students from 14 Canadian universities have had roles as research assistants conducting household surveys, interviews and focus groups, doing data analysis and modeling exploring rural Canadian themes such as health care, services, capacity, environmental values, resource dependency, cohesion, religion, gender, governance, internet use, communication tools, and regional disparity. Over 250 NRE publications were authored or co-authored by students within our network.

Our partner universities



The NRE project began in earnest in 1998 and has since benefited from the support of the following government agencies , NGOs and Research Centres.

The Alberta Agricultural Initiatives Program

The Institute for Rural Revitalization in the 21st Century

The Arkleton Centre for Rural Development Research, Scotland

Loddon-Murray Community Leadership Program, Bendigo, Australia


Minister of State for Infrastructure and Communities

Canadian Federation of Agriculture

Municipal Councils and equivalents of 32 rural sites in the Rural Observatory

Canadian Forest Service

Natural Resources Canada

The Canadian Rural Partnerships Programme

The Newfoundland Department of Development and Rural Renewal

The Canadian Rural Revitalization Foundation

Ontario Minister of Agriculture

The Centre for the Study of Cooperatives, SK

The Ontario Rural Council

La Chaire Desjardins en développement des petites collectivités

Policy Research Initiative

The Co-Operative Secretariat

Rural and Northern Sub-Committee of the Prime Minister’s Committee on Cities and Communities

The Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development

Rural Innovation and Research Partnership, Northern Ireland

English Community Roundtable, QC

Rural Policy Research Institute, USA

The Federation of Canadian Municipalities

Rural Roundtable of the Minister for Rural Development, Office of the Secretary of State


The Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC)

The Federation of Canadian Municipalities

The Rural Secretariat of Agriculture and Agri-food Canada

Health Canada

The Rural and Small Town Programme, Mt. Allison University

Hon. Andrew Mitchell, Minister of State for Rural Affairs

Statistics Canada

Human Resources Development Canada

Victoria Department of Primary Industries, Australia

Institut de la statistique du Québec


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