Supporting engagement,
impact and talent in the humanities
and social sciences.


A multi-institutions network led from McMaster University dedicated to enhancing social sciences and humanities contribution to education, social innovation and knowledge policy through campus to community partnerships.

The/La Collaborative’s objective is to steer social sciences and humanities knowledge and skills where they are most needed by creating new models of impact that focus on the needs and interests of participants.  Our sophisticated digital platform is used to support connection brokers who oversee person-to-person collaborations. Our partners access the expertise of social sciences and humanities researchers they need through collaborative processes that put them at the focus. Our collaboration protocols give elementary and secondary school teachers the resources they need to support inquiry in the classroom and provide community agencies and government with increased capacity for social innovation and knowledge-based policy.

A community of practice that invests in new models for research training and talent-building to meet the needs of graduate students in the social sciences and humanities.

The/La Collaborative’s activities revolve around the involvement of graduate “interns” who receive dedicated collaborative research training that focuses on experiential learning to foster foundational skills needed for success in academia and in the private and public sectors. Through their work as connection brokers and expert-facilitators graduate students from all fields in the social sciences and humanities and beyond fuel opportunities that span across sectors – academia, not-for-profit, and government – that combine a flexible schedule with meaningful community based learning.


We are a community of practice dedicated to creating models of knowledge mobilisation and talent-building that put social science and humanities knowledge at the heart of the community.

The/La Collaborative is dedicated to offering social sciences and humanities researchers across all levels and sectors opportunities to leverage their know-how to engage, create, and communicate the value of their disciplines while meeting  their community’s needs meaningfully and with relevance.


Social science and humanities researchers have untapped know-how and much-needed subject-matter expertise that can transform inquiry learning across all levels.

Research makes specialists. Now Academics can all be experts in their communities and beyond.

SSH disciplines benefit. Experts support teachers and enhance students’ learning experience by showcasing the best of knowledge in your field. 

Academics can directly help future undergraduates better understand the importance of their discipline and the role of expert knowledge in addressing societal challenges. 

The time commitment is short: experts need little to no preparation. Interactions are informal, just like office hours.

Engagement in the community caters meaningfully to needs that teachers have identified as priorities, all the while encouraging new collaborative practices and knowledge mobilization approaches that fit the role of social sciences and humanities in shaping better societies.


Campus-Community partnerships are crucial to support Not-For-Profits and train the future of community service and policy leadership. We’re building a pan-Canadian cross-sectoral community of practice, focused on capacity-building around all aspects of social innovation and enterprise.

Social sciences and humanities can help shape the future of not-for-profit leadership, developing skills for the real world while building capacity for current managers. 

We are working with the United Way of Halton and Hamilton to develop, pilot, and scale new reciprocity-based experiential learning opportunityies that will teach students from humanities, social sciences and beyond the principle of social innovation while simultaneously building capacity in local non-profits. The projects will be piloted at McMaster and then shared with other University-Community partnerships across Canada.

TESTIMONIALS “We were looking at the impact of globalization in my economics class. I wanted a chance for my students to make connections outside the traditional ‘google’ approach. I was unsure what to expect at first with the idea of having academics work with my students on their inquiry. Each group was able to talk with the academic to get ideas on the next steps and suggestions on possible credible sources. The final unit culminating task I believe was much stronger. The students were excited to have a different approach to planning their inquiry.”

– J., High School Teacher
TESTIMONIALS "... the knowledge translation training and the collaborative and interdisciplinary training were very appealing to me just for my own interest and developing my research skills.”

– C., Member of The/La Collaborative’s Graduate Student Cohort
TESTIMONIALS “The training session was invaluable and will greatly improve my ability to pursue complex research projects in teams. Having the opportunity to receive this training with others who were invested in collaborative research was especially valuable”

– B., Member of The/La Collaborative’s Graduate Student Cohort
TESTIMONIALS “One of the things I hoped to get out of this experience was to open their eyes to what we do at the university level and to get them excited about learning and asking questions, and hopefully encourage them to come to university”

– V., University Professor



Want to partner with us? Have questions? We’d like to hear from you.