Dr. Soskolne has come to realize through long experience that the most effective way to overcome potential barriers and move research forward is through extensive international networking and collaborative engagement with as many stakeholder perspectives as possible. Almost every major accomplishment in his career was a result of efforts to gather great minds from all sectors to focus on a single topic.
Beginning from his early days in AIDS public health research and practice, he recognized that teams of collaborators would be far more effective than an individual. The network of researchers, public health workers, and grass-roots organizers that he helped to bring together, contributed to the quick slow-down in Canada in the spread of the twentieth-century's AIDS pandemic.
The accomplishment in 1999 of the adoption of ethics guidelines for environmental epidemiologists was an extensively international and collaborative experience, borne out of Dr. Soskolne's founding and chairing of the International Society for Environmental Epidemiology (ISEE) Standing Committee on Ethics and Philosophy in 1991. The hosting of the 1996 ISEE Annual Conference in Edmonton demonstrated great collaborative success as evidenced through the legacy that followed from this meeting.
In 1998, Dr. Soskolne received two awards:
- Distinguished Service Award, International Society for Environmental Epidemiology (ISEE), 1998.
- Edmonton Ambassador Award, City of Edmonton (Economic Development), 1998.
Under Dr. Soskolne's leadership, the Canadian Pulp and Paper Worker Study brought together centres in at least 5 provinces in a collaborative research effort towards Canada's contribution to the International Agency for Research on Cancer's international study of health effects associated with work in the pulp and paper industry. However, this initiative met with only marginal success in Canada. The literature review from that initiative, however, was subsequently published in Chronic Diseases in Canada (CDIC) and is accessible here
Dr. Soskolne's work (2008 – 2010) as founding Academic Coordinator in the newly-established Office of Sustainability in the Provost's Office included a focus on curriculum development for sustainability-training across all disciplines throughout the University of Alberta. This work required interdisciplinary collaboration campus-wide.
His research work into occupational acid exposure has for several decades remained collaborative and inter-disciplinary with his last published work on this topic demonstrating this rather well.
In 2007, Dr. Soskolne was elected President of the Canadian Society for Epidemiology and Biostatistics (CSEB). He was re-elected for a further two-year term in 2009. From 2011 – 2013, he remained on the CSEB Board as Immediate Past-President. He received the 2011 CSEB Distinguished Service Award for his make-over of the CSEB in all of its dimensions.
In 2013, Dr. Soskolne was elected to the position of Vice-President (North America) on the interim board of the Society for the Advancement of Science in Africa (SASA).