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Center for Canadian Studies

The Center for Canadian Studies is a university-based policy research institute on Canada. The center links world class scholarship on Canadian affairs to the study of current events and policy challenges in support of the university’s academic mission.

About the Center

Located in Washington DC, the center sponsors research and events, hosts visiting scholars, and engages outstanding graduate students in scholarship related to Canada, the challenges of US-Canadian relations, and the role of Canada around the world.

The Center for Canadian Studies was founded at Johns Hopkins SAIS in 1960 by Bela Belassa and Canadian-born future Nobel laureate Robert Mundell, both members of the Johns Hopkins University faculty of Economics. The Center and its research and related activities form an integral part of the academic program in Canadian Studies.

Why Research Canada?

The close ties between the United States and Canada are the product of geographic proximity, cultural similarity, and practical necessities. Yet few of the growing number of US policymakers and public service professionals have an adequate knowledge of Canadian affairs; the Center for Canadian Studies is dedicated to redressing this knowledge gap by supporting events that prompt dialogue, research that produces insight, and scholars who can be leaders.


Events hosted by the Center for Canadian Studies bring Canadian perspectives to campus and highlight the best of US business and policy leadership on Canadian affairs.


The Global Public Affairs Canada in Washington is a series of campus talks and events intended to bring knowledge and insight to the complex inter-relationships between public affairs and business, and between Canada and the United States.

The Donner Foundations Research Roundtable series brings leading research practitioners to the Johns Hopkins SAIS campus to discuss research design, methodology, and data-related challenges in the context of ongoing work. Faculty and students are encouraged to participate and share their relevant experiences and insights.

This series is sponsored by the two Donner Foundations: The William H. Donner Foundation of New York and the Donner Canadian Foundation in Toronto. Both foundations are longstanding supporters of Johns Hopkins and the Center for Canadian Studies.

The Thomas O. Enders Memorial Lecture is named for the distinguished diplomat who served as United States Ambassador to Canada for President Gerald R. Ford and President Jimmy Earl Carter. The Thomas and Gaetana Enders Foundation sponsors this annual lecture on US-Canadian relations with a particular focus on economic issues.


The Center for Canadian Studies has a number of ongoing research projects. For more information on specific projects, see the items below. Members of the Johns Hopkins community interested in opportunities to get involved should contact Christopher Sands.


Policy Consulting Practicum

Each Spring, the Center for Canadian Studies organizes a graduate practicum on policy consulting with a Canadian government serving as the course client. A formal Memorandum of Understanding serves as the consulting contract, and the client provides research questions at the outset. Students in the course work as a team to organize the research, often involving review of extant studies, interviews with experts, and original analysis.

Sponsored Research

The Center for Canadian Studies conducts research with support from governments, business, and philanthropy. Students are given opportunities to enhance their graduate education in international economics and public policy at Johns Hopkins by participating as field researchers and data analysts under the supervision of a faculty member.


Intrepid is an online journal published by the Center for Canadian Studies at Johns Hopkins SAIS.