Richard Clément


Richard Clément

Bureau: 613-562-5800 ext. 4312
Courriel professionnel:

Richard Clement


Faculty of Social Sciences
School of Psychology

Bilingualism and society

Verbal communication saturates everyday life. The ability to communicate in more than one language affects relations between groups and, consequently, social harmony. Particularly for minority groups or newcomers to the country, learning the language is an essential component of adaptation and wellness.

Richard Clément's research is focused on the relationship between bilingualism and inter-group relations based on the notion of ethnic identity. Research activities involve fieldwork and laboratory work not only with the Canadian population, but on the international front as well. International projects include bilingualism, identity and wellness; and bilingualism and intercultural contact. The two facets of the research focus, respectively, on the role of language acquisition in psychological adjustment and the social factors that relate to the development of bilingualism in isolated situations.

Clément's research is unique, situated at the crossroads of theories on bilingualism and intercultural psychology. It introduces to bilingualism the notions of identity and psychological adjustment. Bilingualism becomes the principal instrument of cultural and individual change brought about by inter-ethnic contact. The research is socially relevant. In Canada, and elsewhere, language policies have a significant impact on social harmony. Considering the complexity of identity, the effect of these policies on minority groups that do not speak English or French is a source of conflict, and a possible deterrent to their integration into Canadian society.

Richard Clément is a full professor at the School of Psychology. His work on bilingualism, social identity and communication is internationally acclaimed. In 2002, Prof. Clément received the Robert C. Gardner Award from the International Association of Language & Social Psychology and the Otto Klineberg Intercultural & International Relations Award from the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues. In 2003, he was elected a fellow of the American Psychological Association.

Featured Awards and Recognition

  • Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada(2008)
  • Fellow of the American Psychological Association(2004)
  • SPSSI Otto Klineberg Intercultural & International Relations Award (2002)
  • Robert C. Gardner Award (2002)
  • MLA Kenneth W. Mildenberger Award (1999)
  • Fellow of the International Academy of Intercultural Research (1998)
  • Fellow of the Canadian Psychological Association (1989)
  • Paul Pimsleur Award (1986)

Centres and Institutes

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