EDGES member Gaylean Davies has been awarded a Killam Doctoral Scholarship to support her PhD research project “Women, Water, and Empowerment: Investigating Connections and Disconnections in Small Water Enterprises in Ghana”. Gaylean’s work aims to employ feminist conceptualizations of empowerment to investigate women’s experiences of small water enterprise (SWE) projects in Ghana. Feminist understandings of empowerment incorporate various spheres including the economic, social, psychological and political, providing a more holistic, rich and diverse definition of the concept from which to work. Through centering the voices of women themselves, and through collaborations with community partners, Gaylean will explore whether women designated as beneficiaries of SWE projects experience empowerment beyond the economic conceptualization of the term.

The Killam Scholarship and Prize Programmes were established in memory of Izaak Walton Killam through the Will of his wife, Dorothy J. Killam, and through gifts made during her lifetime. Their primary purpose is to support advanced education and research at five Canadian universities and the Canada Council for the Arts. The UBC Killam Doctoral Scholarships are provided annually from the Izaak Walton Killam Memorial Fund for Advanced Studies. It was Mrs. Killam’s desire that those selected to receive scholarships: “Be likely to contribute to the advancement of learning or to win distinction in a profession. A Killam scholar should not be a one-sided person… Special distinction of intellect should be founded upon sound character.”

Killam Doctoral Scholarships are the most prestigious awards available to graduate students at UBC. Approximately 15-20 awards are made each year to the top doctoral candidates in the Affiliated Fellowships competition.

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