Current research Projects and Initiatives

The research mandate of the Canadian Poverty Institute is to provide research opportunities for scholars, non-profit organizations and students in all areas affected by poverty in Canada. The Institute works with government, non-profit organizations and churches to research areas of community concern and seek solutions.

Research at Ambrose is based on the pillars of diversity and peer-review. Research is intended to contribute to our academic disciplines, our church constituencies, the public of Alberta and Canada, and the international partners we serve. Current research initiatives that the Canadian Poverty Institute is leading or supporting include:


Poverty and the New Economy

New inclusive business practices and forms of economic activity have the potential to generate quality employment. This research initiative reviews the adoption of new business and economic practices in Ontario and examines their potential impact on poverty reduction.


1000 Voices: Community Assessment and Sustainability Planning

The Canadian Poverty Institute is pleased to be supporting the ongoing development of the 1000 Voices initiative at the Genesis Centre in NE Calgary. Established in 2012 by a collaborative of local residents and social agencies, the 1000 Voices initiative serves the residents of the 6 north of McKnight communities in NE Calgary, working with over 40 partner agencies to provide programs, services, supports, meeting space and office support for community initiatives. The Canadian Poverty Institute is currently supporting 1000 Voices initiative by

  • Conducting a Community Assessment. Using a Participatory Action Research approach, residents are being engaged to assess the assets and issues of the North of McKnight area to inform the ongoing development of responsive programs and services.
  • Preparing a Sustainability Plan. Based on organizational analysis and the results of the Community Assessment, a long-term organizational and financial sustainability plan is being developed for 1000 Voices to ensure its continued operation over the medium term.

If you are interested in learning more about the 1000 Voices research project, please contact the project team at


A Multi-Dimensional Definition of Child Poverty

This research project is led by the Canadian Poverty Institute and addresses both the lack of a national definition of child poverty and the need for coordination in addressing child poverty in Calgary. The objectives of this project are to develop a multi-dimensional definition of child poverty in Calgary that accounts for factors such as material, economic, social / cultural, psychological, spiritual and moral needs and to assess the alignment between a multi-dimensional definition of child poverty and key social and economic policies and programs impacting children and families in Calgary.


Justice Sector Coordination Project

In order to increase access to justice services, The Justice Sector Coordination Research Project will examine the justice sector service system in Alberta to identify barriers to service coordination and integration and develop recommendations for more effective service integration. The purpose of the project is to enhance the coordination of justice services in order to increase access to justice for vulnerable Albertans. The goal of the project is to identify barriers to the coordination of justice sector services and develop recommendations to address the barriers identified. This project is being undertaken in partnership with the Justice Sector Constellation of the Enough for All poverty reduction strategy with funding from the Law Foundation of Ontario.


Energy Poverty Roundtable

In order to reduce energy poverty among low-income Albertans, the Canadian Poverty Institute is facilitating the Energy Poverty Roundtable, a collaboration between government, energy providers and non-profit organizations. This collaborative works to coordinate efforts to reduce energy poverty and develop policy and strategy recommendations for government and industry.


Neighbourhood Change Research Partnership

Led by Dr. Ivan Townshend from the University of Lethbridge, this project examines the relationship between income inequality, average neighbourhood income and isolation / inclusion and participation in community-based organizations, and will begin to describe an ‘ecology of participation’ within Calgary communities. 


Justice Sector Constellation

The Canadian Poverty Institute participates as a member of the Justice Sector Constellation, a network of government and justice sector service providers working together to increase access to justice among low-income Albertans. The Justice Sector Constellation is an implementing partner of the Enough for All poverty reduction strategy being led by Vibrant Communities Calgary.


The Canadian Poverty Hub