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Each year, Concordia selects ten PhD students to represent the university's interdisciplinary diversity and excellence in research. These scholars engage with our wider community to share the significance of their work and its impact on society.

Program history

The Public Scholars program was launched in 2016, in partnership with the Montreal Gazette, to showcase the outstanding research being conducted by Concordia’s doctoral students. In 2022, the program was expanded to include partnerships with Le Devoir and The Conversation. The program was also revamped to provide more doctoral students with the unique professional development training Public Scholars receive. These changes help enhance the program’s impact through individualized coaching, modernized communication channels and new partnerships.


The program empowers PhD students to articulate and actively share the significance of emerging research beyond academia by coaching them to effectively navigate professional networks and communicate through various public channels. The three main objectives of the program are:

Prepare PhD students to play an influential role through advanced communications and public relations training and deliverables, by: 

  • Producing regular social media content on various channels (i.e. Twitter and LinkedIn)

  • Publishing a set number of lasting public-facing communication material (i.e. op-eds, LinkedIn articles, Concordia news spotlight and video) 

  • Engaging the news media (i.e. print, television, radio interviews, and podcasts) 

  • Mobilizing their knowledge through hosting events with campus and community partners (i.e. 3MT, MT180, site visits, and guest talks)

Raise awareness of the importance of research in the modern knowledge economy by tracking Scholar’s public engagement, by:

  • Collecting monthly data on each Scholar’s outreach (ex. social media analytics, article views, reporting media interviews, news monitoring, etc.)
  • Analyzing the program’s research dissemination impact using collected data

Prepare Scholars for a wide range of career opportunities through greater self-awareness of their skills and research impact, by:

  • Empowering Scholars to discover applications of their research and career paths beyond the academic context 
  • Expanding their professional network to mentors and key players in their field
  • Building confidence to speak and write publicly about their area of expertise
  • Acquiring leadership skills through mentorship of undergraduate students

External partners

Montreal Gazette Logo
Le Devoir Logo
The Conversation Logo
Informed Opinions Logo
Profilia Logo
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