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Parex Resources Innovation Fellowships

We believe our researchers and students can change the world – one discovery and innovation at a time.

Welcome to the Parex Resources Innovation Fellowships, a pioneering initiative launched in October 2019 for University of Calgary researchers deeply engaged in academic exploration and community collaborations leading to impactful startups or advancements, spanning both technological and social innovation.


The Parex Resources Innovation Fellowships are designed to:

  1. Encourage Diverse Innovation: Support researchers across the university in exploring new ideas and insights that drive innovation in various domains.
  2. Facilitate Innovation Transfer: Enable researchers to focus on transferring innovative concepts into practical solutions, bridging the gap between academia and the broader community.


These fellowships are made possible by a generous $3.24 million endowment from alumnus Wayne Foo and Parex Resources Inc., a Calgary-based company engaged in oil exploration, development, and production in Colombia. The aim is to empower researchers to concentrate on diverse innovation and technology-transfer activities.

Celebrating Innovation:

Established in honor of Parex's 10-year anniversary, these fellowships underscore the company's commitment to fostering innovation across various sectors.

Innovation Focus:

Grounded in the university's research-intensive environment, the fellowships provide resources for researchers to concentrate on innovative projects that positively impact society. This spans a wide spectrum, including technological advancements, social initiatives, and novel approaches to addressing complex challenges.

Join us in advancing innovation, driving positive change, and addressing diverse global challenges through the Parex Resources Innovation Fellowships at the University of Calgary.


Note: the Parex Fellowship Form will be open starting January 2, 2024. 

Now Innovating: A Research to Impact Series

Sharing the stories of UCalgary researchers who have moved their discoveries forward and their innovation journeys to implementation and creating impact.

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The 2024-2025 Cohort of Parex Innovation Fellows

Kanwal Bokhari

Kanwal Bokhari, DBA
Assistant Professor, Haskayne School of Business

Dr. Kanwal Bokhari completed her undergraduate degree in finance from IBA Pakistan before arriving at the University of Calgary, where she pursued both her MBA and doctorate in business administration at the Haskayne School of Business. During her DBA, she was the academic lead for the Financial Feminism Investing Lab, an investment education program with a gender-informed lens. She has been awarded a Parex Fellowship for her project, Turning Tides: Charting Success for Women Entrepreneurs. The project will use machine learning to produce tools useful to entrepreneurs, investors, students, and policymakers.

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Victoria Fast

Victoria Fast, PhD
Associate Professor, Department of Geography, Faculty of Arts

Dr. Victoria Fast has a graduate degree in geography and a Doctor of Philosophy in environmental applied science and management from universities in Ontario. Her research and teaching at the University of Calgary encompasses the fields of geographic information science, human geography, and urban studies. Her Parex Fellowship award will support her project, Beyond Infrastructure: Innovating Urban Accessibility through Semantic Mapping. She will address current limitations to infrastructure mapping by adding semantic layers to better tackle issues of accessibility in communities.

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Gabriel Ménard

Gabriel Ménard, PhD
Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry, Faculty of Science

Dr. Gabriel Ménard, who researches inorganic chemistry and clean energy storage, has degrees in Chemistry and Environmental Studies from universities across Canada. He has been awarded a Parex Fellowship to support his project, Selective Electrochemical Direct Lithium Extraction in Flow Using Carboranes. Lithium plays a critical role in our low-carbon energy future, and Ménard’s research team has created a novel strategy to capture lithium directly from salty water mixtures. It offers significant potential benefits to increase access to lithium while reducing costs and environmental impacts.

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Kathleen Sitter

Kathleen Sitter, PhD
Associate Professor, Department of Social Work

Dr. Kathleen Sitter holds the Canada Research Chair in Multisensory Research and Knowledge Translation. She is also a Dorothy Killam Fellow and has more than 25 years experience working in the areas of disability, accessibility, and human rights. Her Parex Fellowship will support her project, Disability Histories, Soundscapes, and Smellwalks: Putting our Stories on the Map. The project, which aims to ensure the preservation of Canadian histories that centres disabled voices in Canadian culture, will build on her existing research and leverage her Multisensory Storytelling Research Studio. It will use app-based technology for people to learn about these untold Canadian histories at different points of interest throughout the country. 

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Xin Wang

Xin Wang, PhD
Professor, Department of Geomatics Engineering, Schulich School of Engineering

Dr. Xin Wang has degrees in computer science and engineering from Northwest University in China and the University of Regina. She has been awarded a Parex Fellowship for her project, Climate-Adaptive Electric Truck Routing and Range Forecasting. With electric trucks expected to play a significant role in reducing carbon emissions, Wang is creating tools to more accurately predict the best routing based on factors that aren’t currently being considered: weather, temperature, road surfaces, driving behaviours and more.

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Past Cohorts of Parex Innovation Fellows