Doctoral research is a source of innovative and impactful research that transforms society and challenges dominant theories and practices. While recognizing the changing landscape of doctoral education, the higher education community continues to emphasize the need to maintain the quality and rigour in doctoral scholarship. Central to this topic is maintaining the rigour of doctoral research design while supporting and encouraging multiple forms of research and research methodologies.

With the generous support of a Social Sciences and Humanities Council Connection Grant, the Faculty of Management (FoM) and Faculty of Applied and Social Sciences’ College of Interdisciplinary Studies (FSAS) at Royal Roads University hosted a three-day online virtual conference from August 20th to August 22nd to focus on socially engaged applied doctoral research in Canada.

The primary purpose was to provide an opportunity for doctoral students from across Canada to showcase different applied research scholarly approaches, foci, modes, theories, and methods to address contemporary social and management challenges. Submissions were received within the conference scope of applied, management and socially engaged research, either advancing theory or investigating a  research problem, either from a single discipline or interdisciplinary perspective. The conference also offered a unique platform for faculty members to discuss multiple forms of doctoral research, scholarship and supervision.

The conference editorial committee reviewed all submissions. As part of the review process, doctoral students peer-reviewed each other’s submissions. All submissions were assessed based on common criteria that included the paper’s applied nature as defined by authors; its originality, significance and expected contribution to knowledge; appropriateness of the literature review; appropriateness of the theoretical approach or framework; and the readability of the paper. The Conference Editorial Committee consisted of Dr. Holmes, Dr. Harris, Dr. Mittelmen, Dr. Hodson, Dr. Wafai, and Dr.Bernard.

The committee accepted both full paper and abstract submissions. In both cases, authors were invited to present at the virtual conference. The proceedings include all submissions and are organized as follow: 1) Part I – Presentations by four keynote speakers;  2) Part II and III – Submissions by supervisors and faculty members on applied doctoral research; and 3) Parts IV to X – Submissions by doctoral students on applied socially engaged research.

Dr. M. Hassan Wafai
Associate Professor & Program Head
Faculty of Management
Royal Roads University
Dr. Mary Bernard
Program Head and Professor
Doctor of Social Sciences Program
College of Interdisciplinary Studies
Chair, Research Ethics Board
Royal Roads University