Got a science question? Live the scientific experience by partnering with a researcher!

# 1Question2Science

Are you a curious person and interested in the world around you? Are you obsessed with a question and don’t know how to answer it?

We offer you the opportunity to partner with a researcher through our Engagement program! For a year, you will be able to explore a subject that fascinates you and experience the scientific method.

We are offering grants of $ 15,000 for the Start-up phase, and $ 30,000 for the Action phase of this program.

For more details, see the full Program Rules

How should I phrase my question?

The aim of the Engagement program is to experiment with the scientific method. With this in mind, avoid offering questions that can be answered with a simple Google search, and focus on questions for which we do not yet have an answer.

The questions can be general, but also rooted in local realities. They can be asked for more utilitarian purposes, but also simply be motivated by your curiosity. They can affect all sectors of knowledge: from political sciences to natural sciences, including health or the arts and letters.

Some examples :

  • What is the impact on racialized people, of their under-representation in centers of power (Websters’ question – in French only) ?
  • How often should we really wash our bath towels (Catherine Ethier’s question – in French only) ?
  • There seem to be fewer insects in my garden over the last 5 years. Is this true, and why?
  • Do public consultations really have an impact on policy decisions?
  • What are my children ingesting when they eat sand in the park?
  • My grandmother has cancer, and she doesn’t understand what her doctors are telling her. How can we help her make informed health decisions?

Questions proposed by citizens

Although the Fonds de recherche du Québec publishes this content, they are not the authors.

Why don't home oxygen concentrators have mufflers?

I would like to know why the researchers or engineers have not yet realized that 2 oxygen concentrators used in a residential home can make so much noise and that no one has thought of putting silencers on their machines that the patient must use 24/24. This noise is hellish!
How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have any related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?
My partner has pulmonary fibroma. He must use 2 concentrators for his survival. The whole family has to endure this noise to keep it at home!

What region do you live in?
Montreal

Wishes to keep their first, last names and email confidential

Does an individual's place of residence have an impact on improving their economic situation over time?

The debate between the different theories of privilege and the classic idea of ​​capitalism seem to contradict each other on which factors influence the improvement of a person’s economic situation. However, data on such research is lacking in Quebec. The aim of this research would be to determine in the first place whether the economic situation of a rich person improves at the same speed, faster or slower than for the rest of society. The second part seeks to know if a person with a good financial situation sees his situation improving faster, slower or at the same speed as a person with greater financial difficulties in the same neighbourhood and then someone with a similar situation in another neighbourhood.

How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have any related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?
I was made aware of this when I heard about the Redlining policy in the United States, which was primarily a racial practice. After some research, I saw only two articles that talk about the situation in Canada, including only one that talks about it in Quebec. These studies show the presence of this policy, but at a very low level, in connection more with the financial situation of individuals than their racial situation.

What region do you live in?
Monteregie

To contact the author of this question
Jean-Claude, MUGABA
mugaba.jeanclaude@outlook.com

How to integrate the best global practices to create an efficient health system in Quebec?

As some countries have succeeded in building effective or even efficient health and social services systems, how can we identify and draw on best practices at the global level in order to adapt and integrate them into our health and social services system. It may need to be completely transformed, metamorphosed so that it is better suited to the needs of the population. Should we start from the blank page, rethink it and make changes to fill in the gaps and deficiencies? I know that many studies, analyzes, files have looked into this question, but the actions and results are still not there. Science is finding answers to much more complex questions; how come we can’t find effective solutions to our problems, a mystery!

How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have any related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?
The problems encountered in the health system are numerous and well known to the Quebec population, particularly in terms of the shortage of resources and personnel in healthcare settings, CHSLDs, emergency waiting times, for get appointments with a specialist, find a family doctor, for a surgical intervention or an appointment with a psychologist, problems with communication between specialist and omni doctors, slowness of communications (fax transmission, paper files), etc., regardless of the pandemic which complicated matters.
What region do you live in?
Montreal

Wishes to keep their first, last name and email confidential

Can we run out of fresh water?

Quebec is a place where fresh water is abundant. Some people believe in harnessing this resource, selling water. Others believe that this wealth must remain ours. But from a macro point of view, if we take a few (millions) steps back, isn’t there a hydrological regulation, on earth, much greater than all the water that could be transported by the man ? In short, wouldn’t the water that is sold abroad come back to us naturally, after its evaporation, then precipitation? Is man as a species really powerful enough to disrupt the water cycle on a planetary scale?

How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have any related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?

Environmental groups have long opposed the sale of our blue gold. I’m certainly not against these groups, but every time I hear this topic I wonder if we can really drain our lakes by selling our water. It seems to me a lot more complex question.

What region do you live in?
Capitale-Nationale

Luc, FOURNIER
Wishes to keep their email confidential.

Is there a bias in the algorithms?

I read an article that mentioned that algorithms created for artificial intelligence were found to be sexist and racist. I would love to learn more and especially to have concrete examples from everyday life.

How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have any related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?

As a black woman I have already been confronted with algorithms which I believe were problematic.

What region do you live in?
Montreal

Wishes to keep their first, last names and email confidential

What is the quality of the indoor and outdoor air in Old Quebec?

What is the quality of the indoor and outdoor air in Old Quebec? Is it possible to map the air quality for the entire historic district with modern, but inexpensive measuring devices? How do these affordable measurement tools compare to more sophisticated tools? How does indoor and outdoor air pollution compare? Is there a statistical correlation between living in Old Quebec and certain diseases caused by air pollution?

How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have any related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?

I bought a condo in a house dating from 1870 in Old Quebec. As the building is old, it was built at a time when building standards did not exist, especially in terms of air quality. Subsequent renovations and the transformation into a condo took place within the skeleton of the existing dwelling. There is no air circulation or kitchen exhaust system. Also, being in lower town on Saint-Paul next to a gas station, wood-burning fireplaces and near an industrial and port district, I am worried about local air pollutants.

What region do you live in?
Capitale-NationaleRicky, NG-ADAM

To contact the author:
Ricky, NG-ADAM
ricky@drave.dev

Est-ce que l'amplitude de mouvement, à elle seule, peut améliorer le bien-être?

Considering my experience in massage therapy-physiotherapy, I wonder if scientifically, movement, in its amplitude and strength, is demonstrated as a source of well-being.

How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?

I have been a massage physiotherapist for twenty years, several clients with very complex problems have regained their well-being through the recovery of amplitude and strength, even if this was not necessarily related to movement.

What region do you live in?
Capitale-Nationale

Wishes to keep their first, last names and email confidential

Does public participation have an impact on people's mental health (Sense of belonging, accomplishment, security, etc.)?

Public participation is often examined on how it can have an impact on society in general and on the relationship between government and the population. I wonder if such studies are carried out with a view to understanding how public participation processes have an impact at the individual level, either on the mental (and / or global) health of the person, on his sense of self-fulfillment, integration into the community, security in relation to its direct and indirect environment.

How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have any related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?

I was made aware of this subject by the current tendency for governments to put in place mechanisms for public participation. We often talk about how these are positive for society, but less at the individual level. During my internship in public administration I became interested in stakeholder management and social acceptability, which I studied at the administrative and sociopolitical level, but never at the psychological level as in the context of this question.

What region do you live in?
Montreal

Wishes to keep their first, last names and email confidential

What are the limits of resilience in the face of racial discrimination?

Can a person diagnosed with anxiety following an experience of racial discrimination survive in a society which discriminates against so-called racialized people?

How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have any related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?

Yes, I have experienced psychological harassment and racial discrimination from my university studies to the workforce. After being diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD), I have been off work for over 2 years.

What region do you live in?
Montreal

Wishes to keep their first, last names and email confidential

What is the impact of the appearance of white lighting in streetlights on the starry sky?

Since 5 years, many cities in the province of Quebec have installed streetlights that mainly light up in white light. Being passionate about sky observation, I would like to know the impact of these new streetlights on the starry sky? Is it harder to observe the sky with these new infrastructures?

How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have any related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?

Being an amateur astronomer and keen on sky observation in the south of Quebec, I saw the appearance of white light in streetlights. My observation sessions seem to indicate that there is an augmentation of luminous pollution and a degradation of the starry sky, but I would like to be certain and, if so, to which degree has the sky degraded because of the luminous pollution.

What region do you live in?

Estrie

Stéphane, MELOCHE

melochestephane804@cgocable.ca

How is created intrinsic motivation in high school students in order to identify means and strategies to help them in their development?

Our school-team implemented an educative project. We observe that our goal related to the development of motivation for all students is hard to achieve. We noticed, with the pandemic and online courses, that some students have a higher absenteeism rate. Furthermore, the achievement gap between our regular classes and our special education programs is increasing. The current context confirmed that the stakes linked to our educative project are real. More than ever, we have to support the student’s commitment. The student needs to be in the heart of the educational success and, to do so, we would like to know about the means and strategies to equip them.

How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have any related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?

I am an education professional and, despite my readings relating to the question, I find it really hard to support the intrinsic motivation of our student body in the current conditions.

What region do you live in?

Centre-du-Quebec

Wishes to keep their first, last names and email confidential

Which type of access do artists from diverse cultural backgrounds have to the performing arts?

I would like to understand what could motivate the employers in the performing arts to hire more people from diverse cultural backgrounds and understand why it is not commonplace. I would like to know if artists from diverse cultural backgrounds that are hired is linked to something unrelated to their cultural background. How do artists from diverse cultural backgrounds see the next ten years in the performing arts in Quebec and Canada?

How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have any related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?

I am a management master’s student and I see how difficult it can be for artists from diverse cultural backgrounds to find grants despite their talent. This situation incites me to better understand the stakes they face and I would like to hear more about cultural agents from different levels of the government who receive their applications and the motivations behind their rejection or acceptations of demands from culturally diverse artists, but also from bigger producers who always recruit the same people.

What region do you live in?

Montreal

Nerlande, GAETAN

wiches to keep their email confidential.

Has the origin of the Big Bang been caused by the quantic reverberation of its own energy?

The matter, in the quantic universe, is at the same time particles and waves. Many geometric models describing the form of the universe suggest a contact point with itself (Loop) or an hourglass form. Is it possible by condensing the entire matter of the universe in a “pre- Big Bang” format, or in its origin point, that the trapped waves create a reverberation effect, generating an exponential “infinity” of particles stored up in this ultra-limited space, until its breaking point. A bit like a speaker that tears/explodes when the reverberation is held too long, or, like the greenhouse effect and the reverberation/rebound of solar rays through clouds, which increases the radiation/heat on Earth because they are trapped.

How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have any related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?

Watching a bunch of documentaries about space and the origin of the universe. Free courses and presentations online, animated by university professors about modern physics and quantic. Many questions on space-time, about the forms of the universe and their related reflections that have emerged since my youth. A desire to study in physics one day, specifically astrophysics and the origin of the universe. I do not have any experience in this field, except a will to imaginate, to confirm and to learn about subjects that are beyond me and allow me to surpass myself mentally.

What region do you live in?

Montreal

Michaël, DEMERS

Wiches to keep their email confidential.

How do we make free self-directed play accessible to our school-aged children?

Since my daughter was born, I have been interested in the different educational alternatives that could allow me to respect her rhythm and free will to learn. I integrated myself into “house-school” support communities where self-directed play is greatly valued to allow the child to learn and develop his motor, intellectual and relational abilities. I would like to know what should be done in Quebec to reduce the obstacles, especially imposed by the scholar cursus, so that school-aged children can access free self-directed play. How do we respect the rights of children and youth to play freely, no matter their economic status, their neighborhood, their skin color or their ethnocultural affiliation? How to make the free self-directed play recognized as a learning method centered on innovation and creativity, essential for mental health and emotional fulfillment, for the physical, social and cognitive well-being of our children and youth?

How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have any related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?

I am the mother of a 4-year-old little girl. I noticed that free self-directed play and access to nature are essential to a good mental, emotional, social and physical health in my daughter. She is currently enrolled in a “school in the forest”.  My daughter is thriving and growing well. She will soon be of age to go to school. I can clearly see the obstacles that will hinder her access to free self-directed play and nature, mainly because of some of the strategies put in place by our school service centers and municipalities. Our educational system, which values competition instead of collaboration, surveillance instead of support, authority instead of democracy, gives little importance to free self-directed play.

What region do you live in?

Estrie

Janette, MUJICA

mujica.janette@gmail.com

What kind of impacts do racism and discrimination have on developing children between the age of 0 and 12?

I would like to learn more about racism and its manifestations. I have worked as a childhood educator in daycare for many years and I often ask myself questions about the preparations of our school settings in relation to the reception and integration of children from diverse cultural backgrounds. I heard many negative comments regarding the ethnic differences of the parents. Be it other parents talking about workers, workers talking about other workers, all that in front of the children. I witnessed complaints, since 2008, about racism from parents regarding workers. With that said, none of these complaints were registered to the ministère de la Famille. There is an important lack of transparency on this subject. Furthermore, in the day care evaluation, there is no questions about the reception of culturally diverse people and the valorization of differences while, in the ministère de la Famille, politics are adopted on this subject. I am passionate about the sociology of racism, education and the development of children between the age of 0 and 12. These are subjects that need to be talked about in day care  so that the workers  and parents feel concerned and put tags up in order to improve  there interethnic relations for the children, even the ones that aren’t from diverse cultural backgrounds, in order to avoid the repetition of these violent behaviours. Is it possible to develop more information about this subject and work upstream with researchers to sensitize parents and workers about the learning process of racism in youth? Thanks.

How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have any related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?

Yes. I was an early childhood worker for more than 12 years. The subject of the behaviours of racism and the learning of prejudices has always been a preoccupation of mine as a daycare educator.

What region do you live in?

Montreal

Wishes to keep their first, last names and email confidential.

Is it better to clean or throw away our paint rollers?

I would like to know which responsible behaviours (or, at least, the least damaging possible for the environment) I can adopt. I often ask myself these questions: is it better to buy local unpackaged or bio, imported or packaged? Understand or get a bird eye view of the life cycles and learn to spot the clues to help me choose.

How were you made aware of this subject? Do you have any related experience on this subject, whether in your professional or personal activities?

I started renovating my house last September and every day brought its share of challenges… A friend came to help us last week and we were asking ourselves these questions.

What region do you live in?

Capitale-Nationale

Agathe, LEHEL

Wishes to keep their email confidential.

Contact and informations

Need help, advice? Contact Laurence Pitre-Vézina, she will help you formulate your question, or give you more information about the program.

laurence.pitre-vezina@frq.gouv.qc.ca
819-371-8172