We target three broad questions:

  • What do we need to know? What are the main challenges and information gaps identified by key Canadian organizations and sectors with respect to increasing the rates of volunteering and giving in Canada?
  • What do we know? What do data available from the CSGVP, along with other data sources, offer to assist and/or contribute to addressing these challenges and gaps?
  • What can we do with what we know? How can the findings from analyses of these data sets be integrated into ongoing and innovative sector activities to contribute to increased contribution and engagement of citizens through giving and volunteering in their communities?

Each broad question provides the overall structure for the project in terms of objectives, sub-objectives, activities and measured outcomes and impacts.

The project is based on a social environment systems approach. Behaviours, such as volunteering and donating are linked to three system levels, beyond individual characteristics. These levels include:

  • Micro-system variables such as family history, friends and close social networks;
  • Meso-system factors such as neighbourhood, school programs, work environment; and,
  • Macro-system parameters such as policy incentives, taxation regulations and liability, which may differ by province/jurisdiction.

Overall Approach

  • Stakeholder Mobilization and Knowledge Mobilization: two streams to be integrated at key points – Our approach identifies various tasks according to two main activity streams: knowledge mobilization and stakeholder mobilization. By concentrating on these two streams and having the tasks weave through both streams at key stages in the project, we anticipate that the project will be able to demonstrate positive impacts by mobilizing not only knowledge and key information but also the targeted stakeholders. By working to mobilize both aspects, we anticipate that the uptake of knowledge, its integration and eventual impacts will be greater.
  • Development of a National Project Advisory Committee (PAC) and targeted Working Groups (WG) – We are developing a committee structure at the outset of the study to provide overall direction and guidance to the Project Team.  We anticipate that PAC members will include representatives from key federal departments and agencies, financial and project partners, sector representatives from national and regional organizations and networks, sector researchers, and specialists in knowledge translation.  The various WGs will work in a more concentrated manner focusing on specific issues, target audiences, and/or products.

Download a complete diagram of the overall approach.

Guiding Principles

  • National in scope, local in practice
  • Diversity and creativity
  • National-level Project Advisory Committee
  • Cross-cutting Working Groups
  • Local-level Demonstration Community Committees
  • Multi-level sector consultations

E=MC2 Research Team

A team photo of the E=MC squared research team taken at the begining of the project.




Michaëlle Jean Centre for Global and Community Engagement


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