Promoting Research

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There has been a lot of progress since this office's 2013 report when we recommended that the Canadian Armed Forces promote more extensive and independent research on Canadian military families. In previous years, Canadian research of this nature suffered for the lack of a framework to support collaborative efforts, and limited funding for civilian research contributions. Today, we are noticing an increase in both interest and capacity to study military families.

See Recommendation 11: Promote more extensive and independent research


An accurate understanding of Canadian military families is crucial for providing relevant support. Insightful research informs and guides meaningful community partnerships, more effective resource allocation and service delivery tailored to the support you need.

Canadian Institute for Military and Veteran Health Research

The Canadian Institute for Military and Veteran Health Research supports and inspires Canadian research, partnerships and knowledge sharing, to enhance the lives of Canadian military personnel, veterans and their families. Since it was first hosted by Queen’s University and the Royal Military College of Canada in 2010, Canadian Institute for Military and Veteran Health Research has worked to develop a research network of over 1000 researchers from 42 Canadian universities. Every Canadian province has academic representation, helping the Canadian Institute for Military and Veteran Health Research to harness a national capacity for research, in addition to seven global affiliates.

The Canadian Institute for Military and Veteran Health Research organizes research around strategically themed working groups, aiming to leverage existing academic resources, foster partnerships and new research. This forum also promotes the shared understanding of issues between academics, policy makers, program developers and professional clinicians. The large group of professionals who contribute to Canadian Institute for Military and Veteran Health Research are helping to lay the groundwork for expanded efforts to build understanding and advocacy on the issues that affect military families.

Engaging and supporting students –the next generation of researchers in this field – is another important part of what the Canadian Institute for Military and Veteran Health Research does. The institute facilitates a nationwide graduate course, Issues in the Health of Military Personnel, Veterans and their Families. Offered through Queen’s and Royal Military College of Canada, this course is available to any student of a member university.

The Canadian Institute for Military and Veteran Health Research moreover has a Student and Post-Doctoral Engagement Committee that offers a way for advanced students to develop new contacts, as well as leadership skill development opportunities, to “support students through their academic journey.”

Access to Canadian based research is now more readily available through Canadian Institute for Military and Veteran Health Research publications of its Journal of Military, Veteran and Family Health – an online, open access, peer-reviewed scholarly journal first published in 2015. Research Focus, a publication series from Canadian Armed Forces Military Family Services is another example of efforts to increase public access to research findings related to military families. Studies completed by Director General Military Personnel Research and Analysis can also be found on the Military Family Services website.

Vanier Institute

 The Vanier Institute for Families is an important partner of the Canadian Armed Forces for building ‘military literacy’ in Canadian communities.  The Institute’s 2016 Snapshot of Military and Veteran Families in Canada is intended to increase awareness among the public and service providers of the unique challenges and stressors faced by military families.

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