Professor Morley Gunderson inducted as a Fellow to the Royal Society of Canada, November 15, 2008

photoProfessor Morley Gunderson of the Centre for Industrial Relations and Human Resources and the Department of Economics, University of Toronto, has been inducted into the Royal Society of Canada — the highest Canadian honour a scholar can achieve in the arts, humanities and sciences.

“Morley is an internationally recognized scholar whose research, institution building and teaching has been pioneering in transforming the field of industrial relations in Canada from one that was formerly descriptive and institutional to one that uses rigorous quantitative and analytical techniques. He is first in citation ranking in the Canadian Journal of Economics and holds the CIBC Chair in Youth Employment and has received both the Gérard Dion Award from the Canadian Industrial Relations Association, and the Industrial Relations Research Association Award for outstanding teaching in Labour Economics for his “ability to inspire students to a love of the subject” [quote taken from the Royal Society of Canada, New Fellows 2008 program].

Morley Gunderson is the initial author of the most widely used labour economics textbook in Canada, Labour Market Economics: Theory, Evidence and Policy in Canada, now in its sixth edition. He is also an initial editor and significant contributor to the most widely used industrial relations text in Canada, Union-Management Relations in Canada, now in its sixth edition with a new title, Canadian Labour and Employment Relations.

With respect to institution building, Gunderson also designed both the Masters and PhD programs in Industrial Relations at the University of Toronto. The pioneering aspect of this endeavour is illustrated by the fact that they were the first Industrial Relations programs in English speaking Canada. Their success has spawned a number of programs at other universities in Canada. Despite their recent origins the MIR was established in 1975 and the PhD in 1987 both are now regarded as amongst the top in North America and in the world, attracting students globally. Over 500 students have graduated from those programs, being extensively influenced by Gunderson both as a teacher and through the content and structure of the programs he designed. It would be hard to find a person trained in Industrial Relations in Canada today who has not been influenced by Gunderson directly as a student, or indirectly as a student of one of his PhD graduates, or as a reader of one of his textbooks or articles.

Morley’s influence is also spread through his many PhD students who have taught, or are now teaching, throughout the world: coast to coast in Canada from Memorial to UBC including Saint Mary’s in Halifax, the University of New Brunswick, McGill and the University of Montreal, Queens University, U of T, Ryerson and York, the University of Saskatchewan, and the University of Alberta. Other PhD graduates teach at Cornell, Wisconsin, Case-Western and San Diego in the United States; Tecnológico de Monterrey in Mexico; the London School of Economics and Kingston University in the U. K.; the University of the West Indies in Jamaica, and Victoria University at Wellington in New Zealand.

From 1985 to 1997, Morley served as Director of the Centre for Industrial Relations. The Morley Gunderson Prize was established in 1997 as a tribute to Morley Gunderson’s ten years as Director. His fundraising initiatives in 1997 resulted in the establishment of an endowment fund of over $1 million for student fellowships. 

Fellows of the Royal Society of Canada (founded in 1882) are selected by their peers in recognition of outstanding scholarly, scientific and artistic achievement. The medals were presented and the new fellows inducted in Ottawa on Nov. 15, 2008.

group photo

The Royal Society of Canada inducted its new fellows at a Nov. 15 ceremony in Ottawa. Professor Morley Gunderson (4th from right) joined 15 other new and past U of T inductees to celebrate the occasion.