Nathalie Kermoal, PhD

Interim Dean, Faculty of Native Studies
Acting Dean, Faculty of Native Studies


Interim Dean, Faculty of Native Studies
(780) 492-7207
2-60 Pembina Hall
8921 - 116 St NW
Edmonton AB
T6G 2H8

Acting Dean, Faculty of Native Studies



Professor Nathalie Kermoal is a proud Breton (a people living on the West coast of France). She is a full professor in the Faculty of Native Studies. She is a bilingual specialist (French and English) in Canadian history and more specifically in Métis history. She did her M.A in contemporary History at the University of Nantes (France) and her Ph.D in Canadian History at the University of Ottawa. She has published three books as well as numerous articles on the Métis, Urban Aboriginal issues, Contemporary Aboriginal Art as well as the Calgary School. In 2011-2012, she served as Interim Dean of the Faculty of Native Studies. In 2013 and 2014, she was Special Advisor on Aboriginal academic programs with the Provost’s office of the University of Alberta. Since July 1st, 2009, Professor Kermoal is the Associate-Dean Academic of the Faculty of Native Studies. As well, since January 2016, she is the Director of the Rupertsland Center for Métis Research (for more information, see Research)

Ph.D.: History, University of Ottawa (1996)
M.A: History, University of Nantes (France) (1987) Cum Laude
Honour’s degree in History, University of Nantes (France) (1986)
DEUG: History and Geography, University of Nantes (France) (1985)


Professor Kermoal"s research expertise:

•    Indigenous History
•    Métis History
•    Métis Rights and environmental issues (land use and resources)                       
•    History of Indigenous Political Thinking (1960s-1970s)
•    Calgary School
•    Constitutional Issues
•    Gender issues/Métis Women
•    Daily Lives/Material Culture
•    Contemporary Aboriginal Art
•    Urban Indigenous Issues

Current Research:
Professor Kermoal is currently working on urban Métis history. She is researching the Métis housing context of the 1960s and 1970s to understand why housing became the number one priority for action. She focuses more specifically on a Métis Housing Corporation named Canative founded in Edmonton in 1971. Three Métis men: Herb Belcourt, Orval Belcourt and Georges Brosseau understood that putting a roof over peoples’ head was an essential part of having a decent living. This ground breaking, innovative and inspirational non-profit organization became an extremely successful Métis housing project across Alberta. The
aim of the book is to capture an important moment in history at a time when the Métis were not on the radar of the Federal government since they were perceived as a provincial jurisdiction. In the 1970s, Canative challenged what it meant to be Aboriginal and living in a big city like Edmonton. Through self-governing principles and measures, it overcame many barriers, some institutional, some raced-based and demonstrated—with a lot of determination amidst the criticisms—that a business led by Aboriginal people could be successful.

As indicated in her short bio, Professor Kermoal is the Director of the Rupertsland Center for Métis Research:

Who We Are

The Rupertsland Centre for Métis Research (RCMR) serves as an expansive academic research program specifically geared toward Métis issues. The goals and objectives of the research centre include: building provincial and national connections with the Métis community; building research capacity to advance Métis-specific research; and training and employing student researchers.

Research Areas

  • Historical research and Métis rights
  • Institutional deficit in Métis education
  • Land use and resources 
  • Contemporary Métis issues Research and 
  • Analysis capacity on current topics and general policy areas


In the Fall 2019, she is teaching NS 370: The Métis: The Emergence of a People: OE3 (fi 6) (either term, 3-0-0). An examination of the factors responsible for the emergence of Métis communities in different areas at different times, with the emphasis on Canada (more specifically on Western Canada). The development of Métis people together with lifestyles that serve to distinguish them from others will receive much attention. Where applicable, comparisons with similar experiences elsewhere in the world will be made. Prerequisites: NS 110, 111 and 240 or 290 or consent of the Faculty.


I welcome prospective graduate students to contact me about supervision in the following areas: history (Métis and First Nations) including Indigenous-settler relations (with special interest regarding francophone groups on the Prairies but other groups too), Métis Material culture with a particular interest on Métis beadwork, Métis land issues (contemporary or historical) such as land use and resources (in its complexity ... including urban and environmental issues as well as gender issues). 

Featured Publications

Nathalie Kermoal and Isabel Altamirano-Jiménez

2016 January;