Four named as inaugural members of ‘The College’

Three Western professors, and one King’s University College professor, have been named among 91 inaugural members of the Royal Society of Canada’s College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists. Those named to the College represent the emerging generation of scholarly, scientific and artistic leadership in Canada.

Together, the members will address issues of particular concern to new scholars, artists and scientists, for the advancement of understanding and the benefit of society, taking advantage of the interdisciplinary approaches fostered by the establishment of the College.

Western’s honorees are:



Daniel Ansari – Department of Psychology, Numerical Cognition Lab

Daniel Ansari conducts research to examine children’s typical and atypical (Developmental Dyscalculia) numerical and mathematical skills at both behavioural (cognition) and neural levels of analysis. Ansari’s research program is paving new avenues for the identification of children who have difficulty with math, seeking to address these problems early in development before they become life-long barriers to success.



Isaac Luginaah, Department of Geography

Isaac Luginaah, Canada Research Chair in Health Geography, is a global leader in environment and health research. His research addresses how emerging epidemics are radically changing health landscapes in the face of increased burdens from environmental exposure in developed and developing countries. His pioneering work in North America and Africa has made field-defining theoretical and methodological contributions, addressing impacts of environmental hazards and vulnerabilities in population health.



Valerie Oosterveld, Faculty of Law

Valerie Oosterveld is an Associate Dean at the Faculty of Law, Western University. She has published widely in the field of international criminal law, particular on gender issues. Her scholarship has influenced the work of international tribunals, such as the International Criminal Court, and she has been cited by leading scholars in her field. Since joining Western, she has presented 60 papers, including to the United Nations Human Rights Council.



Robert Ventresca, Department of History, King’s University College

Robert Ventresca demonstrates through his study of modern Italian and Church history the complex intersection of religion and civil society and the dynamic, if contested, role of religious traditions in the modern world. His current work explores how Catholic thought on modernity, the nation-state, race and the ‘Jewish Question’ influenced a range of Catholic responses to 20th century fascist bio-politics.

The year’s new scholars will be inducted on Friday, Nov. 21, in Quebec City.