Since ARDN believes that research is essential to increasing knowledge and information, it has invested in large research projects that have the potential to improve the quality of life in rural communities while engaging multiple partners. If you are interested in any of these projects and want more information please contact Research Director Paul Watson.
Athabasca University, NorQuest College
Achievable Sustainable Options for a Resource –Based Community
The goal of this project is to develop a conceptual framework, a map for Hinton to follow, that leads the way for this resource-based community to move towards a more socially, economically and environmentally (SEE) sustainable future and provide a solid base for other Alberta communities. This project will have multiple impacts, including the creation of a two-part model for other communities, conditions for effective knowledge creation, and increased community leadership strength.
Community Partners: Town of Hinton, Grand Alberta Economic Region, Hinton Friendship Centre, Town of Grande Cache
Article in Curb Magazine: Overcoming the Peaks and Valleys of Resource-Dependent Economies
Bow Valley College
Increasing Clinic Training Capacity in Rural Alberta Through The Use of Human Patient Simulators for Licensed Practical Nursing
This pilot project will test the use of a mobile human patient simulator laboratory to train current Licensed Practical Nursing students in rural Alberta locations. It will improve access to health care education in rural Alberta for students and aboriginal people, increase access to skilled resources for rural health based employers, demonstrate more cohesiveness between post-secondary institutions and communities, and provide information to that could influence the decisions of government policy makers.
ARDN Partners: Northern Lakes College, Red Deer College
Community Partners: Old Sun College, Prairies Colleges of Applied Arts and Technology, Red Crow Community College
Grande Prairie Regional College
Alberta Rural Organic Waste Energy Network (AROWEN)
This project will establish AROWEN by integrating five existing research projects and demonstrations on waste-to-energy projects across Alberta into one robust research initiative, managed by the community-based network. It will focus on community leadership, networking and knowledge transfer, and science technology and data-gathering.
ARDN Partners: University of Alberta
Community Partners: Government of Canada, Town of Beaverlodge, the Hamlet of Clairmont, Woodlands County, Camrose County, the City of Edmonton
Renewable Energy and Conservation Initiatives and Rural Economic Development
This project is focused on identifying integrated solutions to address the needs of the rural renewable energy generation. It will enhance the college’s capacity to undertake this type of research, increase the awareness of renewable energy and thermal storage installations, train students in hands-on-design and installation, troubleshoot renewable energy and conservation, and attract new businesses.
Community Partners: Vital Engineering Corporation, SkyFire Energy, EarthNet Geothermal, Factor X Solutions, NSERC, Community Futures, City of Lloydminster, Town of Vermilion, Lloydminster Chamber of Commerce, Onion Lake First Nations Development Corporation, County of Vermilion River, Vermilion and District Chamber of Commerce, Alberta Hub, Lloydminster Construction Association, Streetscapes
Mount Royal University, Medicine Hat College, Portage College
Revitalization of Rural Alberta Businesses – Businesses Retention and Expansion (BR&E)
This project will build on the ARDN facilitated research project on BR&E from the previous year to examine 19 Alberta rural communities employing the BR&E methodology. It will provide a unique data set for rural entrepreneurship research, enable the economic development of rural businesses, and facilitate the research capabilities and programming of the academic partners.
ARDN Partners: Bow Valley College
Community Partners: Alberta Chambers of Commerce, Canadian Youth Business Foundation, Alberta Business Family Institute, Regional Economic Development Alliances, Alberta Women Entrepreneurs, Community Futures, Alberta Municipalities Small Communities Committee, Vermilion River Regional Alliance
A Community of Practice (CoP) in Evidence Based Practice (EoP) for Rural Alberta EMS Health Professionals
A rural voice is needed in the Medical Control Protocols and the best means of achieving this is to partner emergency medical services (EMS) practitioners, rural communities, and post-secondary institutions in an extensive rural network as a CoP. It will offer knowledge sharing and dissemination, provide a valuable opportunity to strengthen relationships, enhance individual knowledge and skills, and increase the quality of care delivered to rural Albertans.
ARDN Partners: Red Deer College, University of Alberta, Lakeland College, Portage College, Lethbridge College
Community Partners: ACCTI, Alberta Health Services, Alberta College of Paramedics, Peace Hills EMS, Crowsnet Pass EMS, Aeromedical Emergency Services Ltd.
Red Deer College
Enhancing Independent Living for Rural Seniors and Persons with Disabilities
Often people with disabilities who live in rural Alberta are forced to move to urban areas, because there is a lack of supports and services. Identifying technologies that could potentially alleviate caregiver burdens or allow a person to live independently in a rural community will have a considerable impact on quality of life for that person, the caregivers, and the community. The result of this research will inform the design and implementation of technology-related strategies for maximizing mental well-being through the enhancement of independent living.
ARDN Partners: Lethbridge College
Community Partners: Persons with Developmental Disabilities, Alberta Health Services, Bethany Collegeside
University of Alberta
The Economic Value of French in Rural Alberta Communities
This project will investigate whether bilingualism in rural Alberta’s officially bilingual and Francophone communities is an economic asset. If it proves to be an asset, the study will determine the relative benefit of French in Alberta’s rural communities. This project will measure the value of bilingualism in rural communities and provide concrete evidence on which to base decisions for communities considering the move to official bilingualism.
ARDN Partners: Northern Lakes College
Community Partners: Town of Beaumont, Town of Falher, Town of Legal, the Conseil de développement économique de l’Alberta (CDEA), l’Association Canadienne-Française de l’Alberta (ACFA)
University of Lethbridge
The Effects of Sport Academies on Rural Alberta’s Communities, Schools, and Students
This project will examine the growing phenomenon of sport academies to determine and document their positive effects on the rural communities, schools, and students. It will provide information on best practice models and knowledge, assist communities in determining the economic, cultural, environmental, social and education issues affecting their residents, and allow communities to share information and ideas.
ARDN Partners: Lethbridge College
Community Partners: Warner Hockey School, Vauxhall Baseball Academy, Westwind Rodeo Academy, Kate Andrews High School, the Towns and Chambers of Commerce of Warner, Vauxhall, Cardston, and Coaldale, Horizon School Board, Westwind School Division, Palliser Regional division