Tim Stockwell named 2018 fellow of the Royal Society of Canada

Three University of Victoria faculty members have received the country’s highest academic honour, named 2018 fellows of the Royal Society of Canada.

Benjamin Butterfield, one of Canada’s finest tenors; Eike-Henner Kluge, a leading ethicist and philosopher whose scholarship and theoretical analysis has influenced Canada’s right-to-die legislation and legal access to abortion; and Tim Stockwell, who has pioneered research in substance abuse and public health policy, were elected to the society’s distinguished ranks in an announcement made today. 

The title has been bestowed on more than 2,000 Canadians in the 134-year history of the RSC and has just one criterion: excellence. The peer-elected fellows of the society are chosen for making “remarkable contributions” in the arts, humanities and sciences, and Canadian public life.

Tim Stockwell is a knowledge translator and advocate for strong public health policies to prevent illness, injuries and death from alcohol and drug misuse. He has made key contributions that have shaped substance use policies in several countries, including Canada, Scotland, Ireland and Australia.

“It is very gratifying to see that some of the ideas arising from my work and that of my close colleagues are being used in Canada and other countries to reduce substance use,” says Stockwell, director of the Canadian Institute for Substance Abuse Research (CISUR) and professor of psychology.

Stockwell has pioneered the use of more accurate measures of alcohol consumption and related harms and currently he is working with governments in Canada and overseas to estimate the impact of alternative alcohol policies on health and safety.

His in-depth analyses of alcohol policies such as, pricing, privatizing liquor monopolies, managed alcohol programs and reforming excise taxes inform public policy have had a significant effect on social and health outcomes.

“I’m both delighted and surprised to be honoured with this award; it gives me some satisfaction that my work has contributed to a continuing process that should result in saving lives and preventing injury and illness,” says Stockwell.

As director of CISUR for 15 years, Stockwell continues to engage in ground-breaking research related to the impact of substance use on health and safety. Currently he is co-leading a team that is developing a web-based data visualization tool to provide the best estimates of the economic costs of substance use attributable deaths, hospitalizations and crimes in Canada. He also plans to continue his interest in analysis of the scientific evidence contributing to the idea that alcohol use in moderation is good for health.

Read the full UVic News media release.