About the Federation

The world needs people who can think critically.

It needs people who can tackle complex problems innovatively, progressively, and engagingly in their work, communities, and democratic institutions.

The Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences is here for those people: people like you.

As a not-for-profit charitable organization with a membership of over 160 Canadian universities, colleges, and scholarly associations representing 91,000 researchers and graduate students, we provide the HSS community with a crucial platform of opportunities to make their voices heard when and where they’re needed.

And they are needed.

Now more than ever, Canada and the world demand agile, well-rounded thinkers who can assess and adapt to rapid technological, economic, environmental, and social change — thinkers who know that the past is prologue and that now is the time to prepare for the future.

With a hub of resources and access to hundreds of HSS-relevant content, the Federation helps by promoting those priorities to the federal government, policy makers, and the media — by nurturing the critical role this research and teaching plays in building an inclusive, nimble, and prosperous society. 

We do this through our advocacy, to demonstrate the relevance of our members' disciplines. We consult with members to prepare pre-budget submissions. We collect research stories and push them out via various platforms. 

We do this in our Big Thinking lecture series, where we bring leading scholars to the forefront of the national dialogue on public policy and public relevance.

We do this through our Awards to Scholarly Publications (ASPP) program, in which we fund major research on essential topics in the humanities and social sciences. 

We do this by organizing Canada’s largest gathering of academics, the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, which attracts up to 10,000 participants annually. We provide funding through Congress for interdisciplinary and international programming, and for graduate students. We pitch research presented at Congress to media to increase visibility.

What’s more, our commitment and the work that’s underway on Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Decolonization (EDID) will help make all our events and activities more equitable, accessible, and inclusive.


From ancient languages to modern international relations, humanities and social sciences prepare Canadians to build innovative, progressive, and engaging workplaces, communities, and societies in an ever-changing world…

…a world that, increasingly, needs people who can think critically.