Doctor of Social Sciences

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Now showing 1 - 5 of 103
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    A drowning prevention policy framework
    (2023-09-14) Francis, Emily; Beerman, Stephen
    In this work, I demonstrate the novel application of the “ʈiič-mɑɫ-ɴi” (living and surviving with water) teaching to a practical challenge, at this time, there is no drowning prevention policy in Canada. Through a narrative-research-design, I conducted sixteen research interviews with aquatic professionals, Indigenous community members who live in aquatic contexts, and people working within Indigenous-health-leadership (2021-09-20 to 2022-08-04). The primary exploratory research question is, “How can First Nations or Indigenous populations or communities be supported in the areas of injury and drowning prevention programming?”. This work resulted in eight principles. 1. Colonization is a probable contributor to the inequity in drowning mortality. 2. Historical relationships with water have been disrupted by colonization, segregation, geographic relocation, poverty of opportunity, socioeconomic inequity, cultural barriers, racism, and lateral aggressions. 3. Community needs assessments and lived experiences and data should inform prevention efforts. 4. Community members should be leaders, teachers, and facilitators. 5. Measures of success should be determined by the community. 6. Community skill building, resilience, safety recreation and emergency response may be considered key objectives. 7. Mutual respect building with the 5 elements teaching, and community-members should be core values. 8. Address unintentional injury (drowning) as a public-health issue and a specific cause of death in First Nations communities causing excess mortality. The author shall continue to consult with multi-sectorial stakeholders to address real-world gaps in knowledge and priority areas that inform a drowning prevention policy framework.
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    Sustainable development and energy systems: shaping Canada’s energy transition
    (2023-09-10) Benson, Michael; King, Leslie
    Countries around the world are facing major disruptions to their established energy systems, and Canada is no different. The energy transition in Canada is shaped by economic considerations, environmental considerations, such as climate change, and social considerations, such as reconciliation with Indigenous peoples. Given these diverse considerations, it is not always clear how to properly manage the tensions and trade-offs within energy transitions. My research examined how the concept of sustainable development could be used to navigate the energy transition in Canada towards a more affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy system. My research findings identified challenges faced by energy practitioners in Canada, identified important and underexplored topics in Canada’s energy transition, and suggested that an Integrated Model of Sustainable Development could be a useful concept for energy transitions. This Integrated Model is grounded in reason, science, humanism, and progress, which enables energy practitioners to find common ground in a polarized environment and overcome existing impasses in the energy transition. Further research could investigate the usefulness of an Integrate Model of Sustainable Development in addressing other complex sustainability challenges. This dissertation by portfolio includes four distinct portfolio products. First, a journal article published in Sustainability that conducted a case study of the Energy Futures Lab in Canada and introduced an Integrated Model of Sustainable Development as a guide to the energy transition in Canada. Second, a journal article submitted to Energy Research and Social Science that examined the challenges faced by Canadian energy practitioners and discussed how the three strategies of sustainable development could be useful in different energy transition situations. Third, a journal article submitted to FACETS that identified important topics and underexplored topics in Canada’s energy transition, and discussed how an Integrated Model of Sustainable Development could increase understanding of these topics and generate solutions. The fourth product is a white paper that shares the results of my research with energy practitioners in plain language.
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    Improving access, understanding, and dignity during miscarriage recovery in British Columbia, Canada
    (2023-08-27) Van Tuyl, Rana; Walinga, Jennifer
    Approximately 15–25% of pregnancies end in miscarriage, with more than 15,000 miscarriages occurring annually in British Columbia (BC), Canada. Despite the significant rates of loss, research and health care services for pregnancy loss remain scarce in BC. This research took a patient-oriented methodological approach alongside people with lived/living experiences of miscarriage recovery in BC to evaluate access to health care during pregnancy loss, societal understanding of miscarriage, and treatment options that foreground dignity. The mixed methods design of this research included policy research on prenatal care guidelines, policy research on provincial and territorial employment legislation for bereavement leave, semi-structured interviews (n = 27), and a discovery action dialogue (n = 4). The findings of this research demonstrate the need for improved prenatal care guidelines for early pregnancy loss, follow-up care after a miscarriage, mental health screening and supports, and bereavement leave legislation. This article includes recommendations to improve equitable access to pregnancy loss care, bereavement leave legislation, and future research in this area.
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    Decolonizing our food systems: narrative inquiry into the barriers to accessing foods that reverse chronic disease
    (2023-08-17) Richer, Nicolette; White, Brian
    The purpose of this study is to highlight the barriers that Indigenous People and People of Colour face when accessing health care for chronic diseases. With the rise of diagnoses of chronic degenerative lifestyle diseases over the past sixty years, a disproportionate amount of these are people of BIPOC communities. This study involved interviewing BIPOC people who have experience dealing with the healthcare system in relation to chronic illnesses. It was made very clear by these discussions that not only is there a lack of education for indigenous health, but also a huge injustice relating to food for chronic disease reversal. The root causes of these diseases are not due to what Canadian and USA agencies have identified as age, race, gender, obesity etc. but much more complex and systemic issues. This study indicates that these diseases stem from a history of colonization and trauma and the displacement of BIPOC people from their lands, ancestors, culture and knowledge. The findings of this study emphasize the importance of adopting a holistic, systemic approach to chronic disease prevention and management. Instead of relying on individual-level risk factors, it is crucial to identify and address the complex historical and ongoing processes attributed to chronic diseases in the first place. By doing so, this study outlines the possibility of reducing the rise of these diseases and promoting health equity for BIPOC communities. Keywords: BIPOC, Indigenous Peoples, Chronic Disease, Food as Medicine, Plant-strong Wholefoods, Reversible Chronic Diseases, Colonization, Risk Factors
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    Making sense of science centre exhibit-making: a diffractive ethnography
    (Royal Roads University, 2023-08-14) Ziff, Katherine; Kool, Richard
    Interactive science centre exhibits are hands-on devices designed to appeal to visitors’ curiosity in order to entice them to explore scientific phenomena. Their success (or failure) at that task has been the primary subject of research conducted in science centre exhibitions, which overwhelmingly relies on evaluation methods to measure how well exhibits help visitors achieve the museum’s educational objectives. As a result of that tight methodological focus, our knowledge of science centre exhibitions is deep but narrow, with scant documentation, analysis, or theorization of what happens before, after, and behind the scenes of each visitor engagement. This dissertation addresses that gap. It communicates the results of a month-long new materialist diffractive ethnography conducted at the New York Hall of Science. The field study was conducted during the remediation of The Happiness Experiment, a newly opened (and, as is typically the case, only partly working) exhibition. The Happiness Experiment comprised over twenty novel or adapted exhibit components, all of which needed to communicate not only to visitors seeking to engage with them but also with the floor staff tasked with facilitating them and the exhibits staff who needed to fix them and create the systems required to maintain and operate them for the life of the exhibition. From opening exhibit cabinets to find what had jammed up their works to tracing exhibits’ parts as they travelled through delivery systems, workshops, storage closets, offices, and lunchtime brainstorms, I followed exhibits staff, visitors, and the exhibits themselves in order to ask “How can we understand the ways that the people who create exhibits, the exhibits they create, the visitors who use them, and the science centre that houses them all manage the relationships that shape their interactions?”. I explore what insights emerge from understanding exhibits as interactive devices, cybernetic feedback loops, parts in complex systems, and agential partners in an on-going iterative dance. I found that looking at The Happiness Experiment through those lenses (and extending attention beyond the scope of traditional evaluations) revealed a sprawling, dynamic ecosystem of exhibits, their parts, and their partners that extended beyond the exhibition’s operating hours and outside the lines marking its boundaries on the building map. I found that relationships between exhibits and the people who design, develop, facilitate, and maintain them can be rich and productive, or they can be fleeting, or they can devolve into a stalemate. In sum, the people who are nominally “in charge” of running science centre exhibitions in fact cannot control the exhibits that they build — but neither are they powerless to influence them, particularly if they can achieve the conditions that cultivate flexible, generative long-term relationships with exhibits and through them, their visitors.