Who We Are
The GeoREACH Lab supports Geospatial Research in Atlantic Canadian History and other projects of the Applied, Communications, Leadership & Culture (ACLC) program in the Faculty of Arts at the University of Prince Edward Island.
The Director of the Lab is Dr. Joshua MacFadyen, Canada Research Chair in Geospatial Humanities and faculty member in the ACLC program. Dr. MacFadyen’s area of research interest is Digital Approaches to Environmental History, which examines significant social-ecological transitions in Canadian agriculture using innovative digital history and geospatial analysis of case study areas in the Maritime, Eastern Great Lakes, and Prairie regions. It explores how rural Canadians exchanged one energy system for another by mapping the transition from an extensive organic frontier to intensive food and energy systems. By increasing our capacity to understand both the physical transformations of place and their social impacts, this research will help to inform better land use planning, resource co-management, and risk management in the future.
For more about our team, please see our People page.
What We Do
Researchers in the GeoREACH Lab are engaged in a variety of projects, from faculty-directed mapping initiatives to student research assistance on the lab’s core projects. The lab team uses Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to digitize historical maps and geospatial characteristics of rural food and energy systems in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The lab is also a base for several public engagement projects, from community mapping to the participatory research initiative The Back 50 Project.
To learn more about our current activities, please see the Projects page.
- Energy on the Angus Fisher Russell Farm and Glenelg, Northumberland County, New BrunswickThe Russell Farm in New Brunswick’s Northumberland County is an example of a farmer-fisher energy strategy in a plurioccupational coastal agroecosystem. Angus Fisher Russell (b.1821/d.1896) was both a farmer and … Continue reading
- Energy on the Wilford VanWart Farm and Hampstead, Queens County, New BrunswickThe VanWart Farm in New Brunswick’s Queens County is an example of a mixed farm with an emphasis on dairy, fodder, and other riverine resources found in the Acadian Forest … Continue reading
- Energy on the Andrew Hay Johnson Farm and Falmouth, Hants County, Nova ScotiaThe Johnson Farm in Nova Scotia’s Hants County is an example of an organic intensive energy strategy in a Maritime horticultural agroecosystem. Andrew Hay Johnson (b. 1836/ d. 1914) reported … Continue reading
- The 150 Year Energy Audit: Introducing a Series of Canadian Farm Energy Profiles, c. 1871by Joshua MacFadyen, Canada Research Chair in Geospatial Humanities It’s that time of year when Canadians do energy audits. Some homeowners get professional audits of household energy consumption and start … Continue reading
Top photo: “Farm Scene” (undated), Carter & Co. Limited,
Historic PEI Postcards Collection, UPEI Robertson Library.