IES News

IES is delighted to announce that in May 2014 Dr. Barbara McNicol and Dr. Connie Van der Byl have been appointed Assistant Directors of the Institute for a three year term.


Barbara McNicol is currently an Associate Professor and Past Chair of the Earth Sciences Department (2006-2012) at Mount Royal University. Barbara has taught at Mount Allison University in New Brunswick (1997/98) and as an instructor at the University of Calgary (1998/2000). She is also an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Geography at the University of Calgary (2001-2017). Her research and teaching interests are in socio-environmental geography with a focus on behavioral aspects of geography such as decision-making and the evaluation of sustainable human actions. Studies have been done in areas of tourism and recreation, human use and environmental management and land use and sustainable community. Dr McNicol's current research targets commercial tourism operators and concentrates on comparing their understanding of ecosystem services and environmental supply in national parks. Her past research has evaluated amenity migration and second home effects on Rocky Mountains communities such as Canmore, Alberta. This research included the 2008 Second Home Owner Study for the Town of Canmore, Planning and Development Department. Barbara heads the Parks and Protected Areas Research Group for IES.


Connie Van der Byl is an Assistant Professor of Organization Theory in the Bissett School of Business here at Mount Royal University. She teaches courses in business strategy, corporate social responsibility and environmental management. Connie holds an MBA and a PhD in Energy Management and Sustainable Development from the Haskayne School of Business, University of Calgary and a BA (Honours) in Economics from the University of Waterloo. Dr. Van der Byl acquired over ten years of experience in various business roles with NOVA Corporation and subsequently TransCanada Pipelines before embarking on a PhD. Connie's research interests focus on energy organizations and their response to environmental issues. She is currently investigating the role of collaboration in achieving environmental performance, the evolution of entrepreneurial firms in sustainable industries and corporate strategic responses associated with hydraulic fracturing.