Bertrum MacDonald


Faculty Profile_Bertrum MacDonald (214x210)

Related Information

Phone: (902) 494-2472
Fax: (902) 494-2451
Mailing Address: 
School of Information Management
Dalhousie University
Rowe Management Building, Suite 4010
6100 University Avenue
PO BOX 15000
Halifax, NS B3H 4R2

Research Clusters:

  • Scientific information (environment management, fisheries management, grey literature, information networks, information use and influence, integrated coastal and oceans management, marine and oceans issues, marine governance, public policy and decision making, science-policy interface, state of environment reporting)

Research Interests:

Dr. MacDonald’s research focuses on the communication and use of scientific information, historically and present day. He heads the interdisciplinary Environmental Information: Use and Influence initiative ( conducting research with several governmental organizations. His historical studies have been reported at history of science and history of print culture conferences.


  • Dip. Agriculture (Hons.) (Nova Scotia Agricultural College)
  • BSc (Acadia University)
  • MA (University of Western Ontario)
  • MLS (University of Western Ontario)
  • PhD (University of Western Ontario)

Selected Publications:

  • Soomai, Suzuette S., Bertrum H. MacDonald, and Peter G. Wells. “Communicating Environmental Information to the Stakeholders in Coastal and Marine Policy-Making Case Studies from Nova Scotia and the Gulf of Maine/Bay of Fund Region.” Marine Policy 40 (2013): 176-186.
  • MacDonald, Bertrum H., Elizabeth M. De Santo, Kevin Quigley, Suzuette S. Soomai, and Peter G. Wells. “Tracking the Influence of Grey Literature in Public Policy Contexts: The Necessity and Benefits of Interdisciplinary Research.” The Grey Journal 9, no. 2 (2013): 61-68.
  • MacDonald, Bertrum H. “Crossing Borders: The Smithsonian Institution and the Diffusion of Scientific Information Between the United States and Canada in the Nineteenth Century.” In Science in Print: Essays on the History of Science and the Culture of Print, edited by Rima D. Apple, Greg Downey, and Stephen Vaughn, 87-106. Madison: University of Wisconsin-Madison Press, 2012.
  • Ly, Alexander, Bertrum H. MacDonald, and Sandra Toze. “Understanding the Net Neutrality Debate: Listening to Stakeholders.” First Monday 17, no. 5 (7 May 2012). index.php/fm/article/view/3857/3205
  • Duggan, Lawrence J. and Bertrum H. MacDonald. “Reading Science: Evidence from the Career of Edwin Gilpin, Mining Engineer.” In The History of Reading. Volume 1: International Perspectives, c. 1500-1990, edited by W.R. Owens and Shafquat Towheed, 117-132, London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2011.

Selected Awards and Honours:

  • SSHRC Partnership Development Grant: “Investigating and Enhancing the Policy Relevance of Marine Scientific Information (Especially Grey Literature) Through Multi-Partner Collaboration,” Principal Investigator ($198,795), 2012-2014.
  • Exceptional Interdisciplinary Endeavour in Scholarly Research Award, Faculty of Management, Dalhousie University, November 2011.
  • GreyNet International Award, 2004 (with R.E. Cordes and P.G. Wells).
  • Dibner Resident Scholar Fellowship, Smithsonian Institution Libraries, Washington, DC, 2001.
  • Marie Tremaine Medal, 2000 (Highest honour awarded by the Bibliographical Society of Canada).