The BALSAC Project receives a grant of $2 million

The BALSAC Project , led by Hélène Vézina, receives a grant of $ 2 million

Saguenay, January 15, 2013 - The University of Quebec at Chicoutimi (UQAC) received today a financial assistance of more than $ 2 million for the project “Integrated Infrastructure of Historical Microdata of the Quebec population (1621-1965).” The management of this grant will be under the responsibility of Hélène Vézina, director of the BALSAC Project and professor in the Department of Human Sciences, UQAC.

This initiative, under the responsibility of UQAC, will be conducted in partnership with the University of Montreal and the Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières. The project will also benefit from the expertise of ten researchers from Quebec universities whose work relies on the BALSAC database.

The project aims to integrate into a single database all of the available microdata on the Quebec population, dating back to the beginning of European settlement. It will include all marriages certificates since the implementation of parish registers in New-France in the early 17th century to 1965. This will enable automatic reconstruction of the genealogy of the Quebec population over 12 generations. The linkage of vital event records (birth, marriage and death certificates) from the beginning of the 17th century to 1849 will, in turn, allow the reconstruction of the demographic history of families over a 250 year period. Finally, the database will also contain the data from 7 nominal Canadian censuses (1852-1911) for Quebec City, Trois-Rivières. Saguenay, Côte-Nord and Gaspésie, paired with the civil status data.

The construction of the infrastructure will enable a substantial expansion and enrichment of research possibilities in both social and biological sciences. It will allow Quebec and Canada to consolidate the expertise acquired over the last few decades with regard to the development and exploitation of population databases and maintain their international leadership in this area. The project will also lead to the hiring and training of highly qualified personnel and provide an opportunity for university students to work on cutting-edge research projects, a major asset for the training of the next generation.A funding of $ 824,849 is provided by the Canada Foundation for Innovation Leading Edge Fund, the same amount comes from the Ministère de l’Enseignement supérieur, de la Recherche, de la Science et de la Technologie. By combining this support to the financial participation of the three universities, the project “Integrated Infrastructure of Historical Microdata of the Quebec population (1621-1965)” will benefit from more than $ 2 million.

Source :

Josée Bourassa, agente d’information
Bureau des affaires publiques
Université du Québec à Chicoutimi
418 545-5011, poste 2274  ▪

 Renseignements :

Hélène Vézina, professeure et directrice du Projet BALSAC
Département des sciences humaines
Université du Québec à Chicoutimi
418 545-5011, poste 6571  ▪