ISA Canada Distinguished Scholar Award

Every two years, during the ISA annual convention, ISA-Canada awards the ISA-Canada Distinguished Scholar Award by which it honours exceptional scholarship accomplishments and contributions to the development of the study of International Relations in Canada.

Recipient Annoucement

This year’s ISA-Canada Distinguished Scholar is awarded to Malinda S. Smith, Professor in the Political Science Department at the University of Alberta.

The award recognizes Professor Smith’s significant contributions to the study of global politics, African politics, race and racialization, feminist theory, decolonization, and equity in the university and beyond. The author or editor of numerous books, Professor Smith’s wide-ranging research has examined discourses on terrorism in the post-9/11 era, global poverty and inequality, the political economy of African development, critical race feminism, race and settler colonialism and, most recently, racialization and indigeneity in Canadian universities. Constituting a robust body of work, this research has shaped the study of global politics in Canada and beyond.

A recipient of many national awards for her equity and community engaged scholarship, Prof. Smith’s record is a testament to her commitment to collaboration with scholars across the country and globally. This award also recognizes Prof. Smith’s generosity as a mentor, as well as her work in challenging systemic oppression in the university in order to work towards the goal of achieving a more equitable academic profession. This innovative combination of scholarship, activism, and mentorship make her a significant asset to the ISA-Canada community, and indeed to the academy more broadly.

ISA-Canada is delighted to name Professor Smith the ISA-Canada Distinguished Scholar for 2018.

ISA-Canada also extends special thanks to the distinguished scholar committee for their excellent service. This committee consisted of Alison Howell, (Rutger’s University Newark), Melanie Richter-Montpetit (University of Sheffield), Kim Rygiel (Wilfrid Laurier University) and Colleen Bell (University of Saskatchewan).

General Information

Recipients must meet the Following Criteria

  • Recipients must be a current member of ISA.
  • The nomination process for this award is placed under the responsibility of the Distinguished Scholar Award Committee.


  • The recipient will receive a plaque.
  • The award recipient is the honored participant as part of the ISA-Canada Distinguished Scholar Panel and Reception.

Selection Process

  • The nomination process for this award is placed under the responsibility of the Distinguished Scholar Award Committee.

Apply For This Award

  • The Chair and three members of this Committee are elected at the annual ISA-Canada Business Meeting, and the Committee submits its report to the ISA-Canada Executive Council no later than June 1st of the same year.


Colleen Bell | Chair
University of Saskatchewan

Award Chairs please review dates to ensure deadlines are met.

Key Dates