Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Political Science


Faculty of Arts

First Advisor

Nicholas Nyiri

Advisor Role

Thesis Supervisor


This thesis paper is an analysis of the relationship between defence policy and the unification of the Canadian Armed Forces. While much of the literature and commentary in recent years has centered upon the ‘management’ aspects of unification, this thesis argues that unification was devised in order to re-assert civilian control and direction over the services. Unification then, affects not only the administration of the services, but also, the ‘structuring of influence’ between the civilian authority and the defence establishment, which in turn contributes to the method through which defence priorities are determined.

The thesis also examines the congruence between ‘structuring of influence’ as it pertains to defence policy and the transition in the policy-making process, which was to become evident as the avenues of political input expanded, differentiated and centralized. To this end, the thesis shall discuss the transition in the policy-making process during the tenure of Prime Ministers Diefenbaker, Pearson and Trudeau in relation to the corresponding re-definition of defence priorities.

Convocation Year


Convocation Season