The Selected Works of George R. Lindsey: Operational Research, Strategic Studies, and Canadian Defence in the Cold War

During a government career that spanned nearly the whole of the Cold War, nuclear physicist Dr George Lindsey (1920-2011) gained a reputation as a leading defence scientist and military strategist for Canada’s Defence Research Board. Having influenced Canadian policy in such important areas as air defence, anti-submarine warfare, and the militarization of space, Lindsey’s writings spanning his career with the Department of National Defence, shed light not only on one of Canada’s most influential civil servants of the Cold War era, but also on the inner-workings of the Canadian defence department during the nuclear age.

Matthew S. Wiseman compiled and edited this book. The volume provides full access to a wealth of valuable, previously classified, historical material regarding the scientific and technical aspects of Canadian defence and national security in the Cold War. Lindsey’s writings clarify Canada’s approach to the strategic issues of the nuclear age, while his first-hand experience is valuable for understanding the role and structure of the postwar Canadian defence establishment.


Reviews of The Selected Works of George R. Lindsey

“George R. Lindsey was, for baby-boomer scholars who encountered him, an impressive and somewhat mysterious figure. Doctor Lindsey, as we invariably addressed him, sat just next to the heart of the Canadian defence establishment, and when he chose to speak he was always worth listening to. Shedding light on operational analysis, this book unpacks Lindsey’s sharp eye and shrewd analytical skills on the major defence issues of the period.”

– Joseph Jockel, Department of Canadian Studies, St Lawrence University

“This is an excellent review of George R. Lindsey’s long and distinguished career. Discussing key historical developments and subjects, including nuclear weapons and strategy, NATO history and strategy, operational research, and Canada-US defence relations, Lindsey’s writing is consistently clear and precise.”

– Andrew Richter, Department of Political Science, University of Windsor



2023 Matthew S. Wiseman, “The Weather Factory: Biophysicist Alan C. Burton and Military Research at the University of Western Ontario, 1945–70,” Scientia Canadensis: Canadian Journal of the History of Science, Technology and Medicine (forthcoming 2023).

2022 Matthew S. Wiseman, “The Origins and Early History of Canada’s Cold War Scientific Intelligence, 1946-65,” International Journal 77, no. 1 (2022): 7–25.

2022 Matthew S. Wiseman and Jane Nicholas, “Synchronized Swimming in Ontario, 1920–50s: Gender, Beauty, and Sport,” Sport History Review 53, no. 1 (2022): 6–25. First published online September 2021.

2019 Matthew S. Wiseman, “Canadian Scientists and Military Research in the Cold War, 1947–60,” Canadian Historical Review 100, no. 3 (September 2019): 439–63. Supplementary post, “Don’t Overlook University Archives,” University of Toronto Press Journals Blog, Oct. 15, 2019.

2016 Matthew S. Wiseman, “Unlocking the ‘Eskimo Secret’: Defence Science in the Cold War Canadian Arctic, 1947–1954,” Journal of the Canadian Historical Association 26, no. 1 (2015): 191–223. Backdated and published July 2016.

2015 Matthew S. Wiseman, “The Development of Cold War Soldiery: Acclimatisation Research and Military Indoctrination in the Canadian Arctic, 1947–1953,” Canadian Military History 24, no. 2 (Summer/Autumn 2015): 127–55.



2022 Matthew S. Wiseman, “Civil-Military Relations and Ethics.” In Small Armies, Big Cities: Rethinking Urban Warfare, edited by Louise A. Tumchewics, 133–56. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner, 2022. Solicited.

2020 Matthew S. Wiseman, “‘Baptism by Fire’: Canadian Soldiers and Radiation Exposure at Nevada and Maralinga.” In The Nuclear North: Histories of Canada in the Atomic Age, edited by Susan Colbourn and Timothy Andrews Sayle, 153–77. Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 2020. Solicited.

2019 Matthew S. Wiseman, “The Future of the Arctic Council.” In The Palgrave Handbook of Arctic Policy and Politics, edited by Ken Coates and Carin Holroyd, 439–52. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2019. Solicited.

2019 Matthew S. Wiseman, “Frontier Footage: Science and Colonial Attitudes on Film in Northern Canada, 1948–1954.” In Cold Science: Environmental Knowledge in the North American Arctic During the Cold War, edited by Stephen Bocking and Daniel Heidt, 61–74. New York: Routledge, 2019. Solicited.

2019 Matthew S. Wiseman, “Introduction.” In The Selected Works of George R. Lindsey: Operational Research, Strategic Studies, and Canadian Defence in the Cold War, George R. Lindsey, edited by Matthew S. Wiseman, xv–xxxii. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2019.

2019 Matthew S. Wiseman, “Afterword.” In The Selected Works of George R. Lindsey: Operational Research, Strategic Studies, and Canadian Defence in the Cold War, George R. Lindsey, edited by Matthew S. Wiseman, 219–23. Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2019.



Reviews published in American Review of Canadian Studies, British Journal of Canadian Studies, Canadian Bulletin of Medical History, Canadian Military History, H-Environment, H-Diplo, Histoire sociale/Social History, International Journal, Isis, Journal of Military and Strategic Studies, Labour/Le Travail, Scientia Canadensis