Approximately 500 people attended the 20th biennial conference of the Association for Canadian Studies in the United States (ACSUS), which was held in San Diego at the end of November. The conference is the main North American forum for US academics and researchers specializing in Canadian and Québec studies.
Québec was represented at the conference by its delegate in Los Angeles, Denis Turcotte, who was recently appointed assistant deputy minister and chief of protocol in the Ministère des Relations internationales (MRI). Mr. Turcotte spoke to a group of 200 people on role of Québec and state and provincial governments in fighting climate change.
The MRI also organized a luncheon conference focusing on Québec media coverage of the United States, which was attended by 150 people. The guest speakers included Nicolas Bérubé, La Presse’s correspondent in Los Angeles, and Natalie Debray, professor of communications at Western Washington University. Both speakers noted that Québec’s francophone media assign a preponderant role to the US, even more so at times than Québec’s anglophone media.
Louis Balthazar honoured
Québec was also represented at the conference by various advisors holding positions in Québec’s government offices in the US. Also in attendance were members of the Raoul Dandurand Chair, including Joël Plouffe, Charles-Philippe David and Louis Balthazar. Mr. Balthazar was honoured by the ACSUS for his outstanding contributions to the promotion of Canadian studies in the US.
New grant program
The conference also provided an opportunity to promote the MRI’s Québec Studies Program and Québec Research Initiative Program for US academics. A new grant was announced for doctoral candidates and junior professors, offered in association with the International Association for Québec Studies (AIEQ) and the American Council for Québec Studies (ACQS).
Founded in 1971, ACSUS is a multi-disciplinary US-based organization dedicated to advancing knowledge and understanding of Canada. The MRI has participated in ACSUS’s activities for more than 25 years.