Type of entity
Authorized form of name
Parallel form(s) of name
- Institute of Public Affairs
Standardized form(s) of name according to other rules
Other form(s) of name
- Henson College of Public Affairs and Continuing Education
- College of Continuing Education
Identifiers for corporate bodies
Dates of existence
The Institute of Public Affairs (IPA) was founded in 1936 by Lothar Richter and Dalhousie University through a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation in recognition of the need for greater regional economic and social development. It began as an experimental organization, intended to make connections between Dalhousie University and the community and the social sciences and public policy. The IPA’s primary areas of activity were government, business, labour and community, with a focus on public administration.
Guy Henson was appointed director in 1957 with a mandate to reorganize the IPA. Under his guidance, the institute broadened its socio-economic research programs, including the Africville Relocation Project and significant work in labour-management relations.
In 1977 Kell Antoft succeeded Henson and in 1980 the institute moved into its own building, the Henson Centre, named in honour of the efforts of its former director. In 1984 the Henson Centre, the IPA and the Office of Part Time Studies of Extension were amalgamated to create the Henson College of Public Affairs and Continuing Education. Funding for Henson College was discontinued in 1993 by Dalhousie University, which led to a decrease in the college's activities. In 2003 Henson College was amalgamated with the College of Continuing Education (CCE).
The Institute of Public Affairs maintained its own library, with holdings of more than 18,000 items, which covered topics such as economic development, local government, industrial relations, management development and labour organization. Beginning in 1984 the institute's library was gradually integrated into Dalhousie University Libraries.