Research themes

At Royal Roads University, research is guided by three research themes:

  1. sustainable communities, livelihoods and the environment
  2. innovative learning
  3. thriving organizations

We integrate research and student learning to advance the university’s mandate. The production of applied knowledge is a key to this integrated approach. It entails a curriculum that's solution-oriented and real-world focused. A curriculum that is developed and guided by faculty, student and staff research.

Research is interdisciplinary, and often transdisciplinary. Stakeholders are integral in the design and implementation. Students gain knowledge, practical skills and experience through action learning, research projects, case studies and other learning activities.

The value of these competencies lies in their response to global, national and community-based problems, and their capacity to transfer to organizational settings.

Research here responds to and seeks to address critical issues of our time.

Social and environmental justice guide the university's responsive research. Its relevance is evident as faculty and students mobilize and transfer knowledge beyond traditional academia into the public sphere.

Sustainable communities, livelihoods and the environment

  • This theme focuses on resilience, diversity, development, vitality, and the ability to innovate and adapt. Arguing that a vital community is one that can thrive in the face of change, research explores ways for communities to make the most of their ecological, social, cultural, and economic capitals.
  • Research considers the livelihoods and wellbeing of individuals, communities and societies. Examining assets — natural, physical, human, financial and social, mediated by institutional and social relations, research seeks ways to enhance them.
  • Incorporating multiple perspectives at global, national and local levels, the theme explores multidimensional understandings of how systems — social, political, environmental (natural and built) and economic — intersect and influence each other.

Innovative learning

  • This theme focuses on learning that creates opportunities to generate knowledge and to empower.
  • Research explores models of knowledge generation and dissemination, ways of knowing and learning, participatory learning, emerging technologies, reflective engagement, and qualitative and transformative inquiry.
  • The theme considers learning at the level of society and organizations, as well as the scholarship of teaching and learning.

Thriving organizations

  • This theme focuses on the spectrum of development in organizations, systems and sectors, and how these adapt, innovate and lead with a vision of the future.
  • Research explores human and operational dimensions, seeks to foster individual and organizational capabilities, and considers communication a fundamental enabling process.
  • From a local to global context, research examines leaders, leadership, and divergent accountabilities. The theme also explores issues such as resiliency, responsibility, stakeholder engagement, design, strategic planning, change and diversity.