Rob Currie-Wood wins Vincent Lemieux Prize from the Canadian Political Science Association

M. Whitecotton-Carroll - 06 June 2023

Rob Currie-Wood is the Grant Notley Memorial Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Political Science. His research focusses on political parties, intraparty democracy, party reform, election campaigning, party financing, and Canadian politics more generally. Prior to joining the University of Alberta, Rob was an assistant professor (on a limited term appointment) in the Political Science Department at St. Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia. He completed a PhD (political science) at Carleton University in Ottawa, a Master of Arts (political science) at the University of Calgary, and Bachelor of Arts (political science and economics) at the University of Northern British Columbia in his hometown of Prince George.

He is the recipient of the 2023 Vincent Lemieux Prize from the Canadian Political Science Association.  This prize is awarded to the author of the best PhD thesis submitted at a Canadian institution, in English or in French, in any subfield of political science, judged eminently worthy of publication in the form of a book or articles. Additional information about the award may be found here:,is%20awarded%20every%20two%20years.

His thesis is titled. “Re-Examining the Distribution of Decision-Making Power Within Canadian Political Parties”.  Building from the comparative literature on party reform, this thesis makes original theoretical and empirical contributions to the study of Canadian politics. How do parties develop power-sharing arrangements between their principal faces? What explains variation in these arrangements? The theoretical contribution pushes existing frameworks to view the formation of power-sharing arrangements as a cyclical process. The empirical contributions rest on the reforms undertaken within the Conservative, Liberal, and New Democratic parties since the early 1990s. As the drivers of reform exert pressures on party organizations, parties encounter complimentary pressures for decentralizing some aspects of an individual decision while centralizing others.