Good research is like solving a jigsaw puzzle – the right combination of theory, method and evidence and a careful reading of historical context is needed to answer questions such as: Did the Married Women’s Property Acts change inheritance practice and distribute wealth toward women? When did regional inequality first become important in Canada and how has it contributed to the patterns of immigration and emigration? Did economic growth before 1914 undermine physical well-being across the British Empire, and were the effects felt equally across social and racial divides? When did obesity begin to increase? And why?
I am especially excited to direct the Historical Data Research Unit at the University of Guelph that has created public use samples of the 1891, 1871 and now the 1861 censuses of Canada as well as longitudinal historical data. In May 2017 the HDRU hosts another in a series of international workshops on the construction and use of historical longitudinal data.