Big Thinking Podcast

The Federation is thrilled to be launching the Big Thinking Podcast, a new show that features leading researchers in the humanities and social sciences in conversation about the most important and interesting issues of our time.

For decades, our Big Thinking talks on Parliament Hill and at the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences have challenged and inspired scholars, students, policy makers and community members. But when COVID-19 forced us to move the series online in 2020, we embraced the opportunity to engage our community in a new way. That's how the Big Thinking Podcast was born.


Season 1  Season 2 


Follow us on our streaming platforms for more episodes! 

Do you have an interesting topic or guest to propose? Help us bring important and interesting work from our community to the forefront: email us at

Special thanks to the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) and to CitedMedia for making the Big Thinking Podcast possible.

Fall 2022

Episode 1 with Madeleine Mant, University of Toronto - Are pandemic times really unprecedented? 

Episode 2 with Carl E. James, York University - How does race shape the experiences, education, and achievements of black youth?

Episode 3 with François Larocque, University of Ottawa - Is bilingualism in peril in Canada?

Episode 4 with Terence Day, Fraser University and Thi Kim Thu Le, University of Windsor - What will hybrid or online learning look like going forward?

Episode 5 with Natalia Khanenko-Friesen, University of Alberta - What don't we understand about the war in Ukraine?

Spring 2023 

Episode 1 with Naomi Lightman, Toronto Metropolitan University - Who cares for the caregivers?

Episode 2 with Allan Downey, McMaster University and Janice Forsyth, University of British Columbia - Is sport a means for Indigenous self-determination in Canada?

Episode 3 with Cheryl Thompson, Toronto Metropolitan University - From the Jheri Curl to TikTok: Canada and the global business of Black beauty

Episode 4 with Claire Battershill, University of Toronto - What is the future of books?

Episode 5 with Lai-Tze Fan, University of Waterloo - How worried should we be about ChatGPT?

Episode 6 with Marie-Laurence Raby, Université Laval - Abortion in Canada: how secure is our right? (episode in French)