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Susan O'Donnell

St. Thomas University and University of New Brunswick

Based in

North America

Susan O’Donnell is Researcher and Adjunct Professor, Environment and Society Program at St. Thomas University and Department of Sociology at the University of New Brunswick in Fredericton.

Susan’s primary research interests are: Technology adoption in communities. Social and political aspects of technology use and adoption. Rural and remote communities and community infrastructure. Energy infrastructure. Digital technologies, media, and communications.

For the first half of her 25-year research career, Susan worked in Ireland and the European Union. In 2004, she returned to Canada and moved to New Brunswick to be a senior researcher at the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) in Fredericton.

In 2017, Susan retired from the NRC and continued as a researcher with UNB. In 2021, she joined St. Thomas University as an adjunct research professor.

Susan is also an activist and writer. Her favourite topics are environmental, feminist, union and political issues.


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Harvey, J. & O’Donnell, S. (2022). “Troublemaking: more questions about Canada’s plutonium funding and nuclear weapons proliferation. The Hill Times (April 2022).

Reeder, R., O’Donnell, S. & Prado, A. (2020). “Leadership for Climate Change Adaptation in a Rural Region in New Brunswick, Canada.” The Journal of Rural and Community Development, 15(2), 55-74.

Aspinall, M., O’Donnell, S., Glynn, T. & Beckley, T. (2019). “Manufacturing Consent for an Extractive Regime in Rural New Brunswick, Canada.” The Journal of Rural and Community Development, 14(4), 27–49.

O’Donnell, S. & Beaton, B. (2018). “A “whole-community” approach for sustainable digital infrastructure in remote and Northern First Nations.” Northern Public Affairs, October, 34-37.

O’Donnell, S. & Perley, D. (2016). “Toward a Sociology of the Reconciliation of Conflicting Desires.” Canadian Review of Sociology. 54(4) 474-481.

Beaton, B., Perley, D., George, C. & O’Donnell, S. (2016). “Engaging remote marginalized communities using appropriate online research methods.” In N. Fielding, R. M. Lee & G. Blank (Eds) The Sage handbook of online research methods (Second Edition). Sage, London. Pg. 563-577.

O’Donnell, S. (2016). “Digital Skills: Unlocking the Information Society (Book Review).” Information, Communication & Society. 19, 1770-1772.

Beaton, B., Burnard, T., Linden, A. & O’Donnell, S. (2015). “Keewaytinook mobile: An Indigenous community-owned mobile phone service in northern Canada.” In L. Dyson, S. Grant & M. Hendriks (eds.), Indigenous People and Mobile Technologies. New York, NY: Routledge. Pg 109-125.

McMahon, R., Gurstein, M., Beaton, B., O’Donnell, S., Whiteduck, T. (2014). “Making Information Technologies Work at the End of the Road.” Journal of Information Policy 4(1).

Molyneaux, H., O’Donnell, S., Kakekaspan, C., Walmark, B., Budka, P. & Gibson, K. (2014). “Social Media in Remote First Nation Communities.” Canadian Journal of Communication. 39(2) 275-288.