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Building Healthy Communities

Jim Dunn, Chair of McMaster’s Department of Health, Aging & Society and Nick Kates, Chair and Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences, co-led the Building Healthy Communities events which drew more than 800 faculty, staff, students and community members for a range of events. Building Healthy Communities was part of the Big Ideas, Better Cities, series of public events at McMaster.

Oct 31, 2016

How can McMaster researchers and students help address some of the most pressing issues facing cities today?

That was the focus of Big Ideas, Better Cities, a series of public events that took place between September 2015 and April 2016 aimed at connecting the University to the Hamilton community and showcasing how McMaster research is helping cities respond to 21st century challenges.

“We wanted to build better bridges between the McMaster and Hamilton communities and both listen to their concerns and shine a light on how research can positively impact cities here in Ontario and around the world,” says Susan Searls Giroux, Associate Vice-President, Faculty, who led the initiative. “Our goal was to deepen and expand dialogue within our community, to learn more about the challenges facing cities, and to share the ways in which McMaster’s cutting-edge, interdisciplinary research can help address these challenges.”

Funded through Forward with Integrity– an initiative intended to enhance the University’s programs and activities in core areas including research excellence and McMaster’s relationship with the community– Big Ideas, Better Cities featured themes that focused on four areas of research strength including healthy aging, big data, healthy communities, and research related to climate change and the environment.

Big Ideas, Better Cities events, which took place both on campus and at locations across Hamilton, drew nearly 3000 community members and involved about 200 McMaster researchers campus-wide. Each theme included a series of events that were organized by a team of interdisciplinary researchers and included consultation within the University community and with City of Hamilton officials.

Each set of events was distinct and featured a range of activities including high profile public talks, conferences and community workshops, as well as tours and demonstrations in 17 diverse labs and research spaces across campus.

Building Healthy Communities was made up of four days of events showcasing how McMaster researchers are helping to build healthy cities in Hamilton and around the world.

Jim Dunn, Chair of McMaster’s Department of Health, Aging & Society and Nick Kates, Chair and Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences, co-led the Building Healthy Communities events which drew more than 800 faculty, staff, students and community members for a range of events including:

Talks included:

  • Partnering for Change: Improving the Lives of School-aged Children in Hamilton: Cheryl Missiuna, PhD, OTReg(Ont), Professor in the School of Rehabilitation Sciences at McMaster University
  • Healthy Child Development: Jean Clinton, BMus MD FRCP(C), Clinical Professor McMaster University, Dept of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neuroscience
  • Preventing Family Violence: Building Healthy Families: Harriet MacMillan, MD, MSc, FRCPC, Professor, Departments of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences, and of Pediatrics, Chedoke Health Chair in Child Psychiatry, Offord Centre for Child Studies, McMaster University and McMaster Children’s Hospital
  • Neighbourhood Influences on Parents’ Work-Family Conflict and the Implications for Child Health and Well-Being: Dr. Marisa Young, Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology, McMaster University
  • Mental Health and Academic Outcomes of Migrant Children in Hamilton: Kathy Georgiades, PhD, Associate Professor & David R. (Dan) Offord Chair in Child Studies, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences & Offord Centre for Child Studies

 

The McMaster Health Crawl

 McMaster researchers also gave demonstrations and guided tours of six unique labs and research spaces on campus, inviting both the Hamilton and McMaster communities to learn more about the research currently underway.

The Biomechanics Lab, the LiveLab, the Centre for Simulation-based Learning, the CRUNCH Lab, the Student Wellness Centre (SWELL) and the PACE Lab were open to the public.

Watch video featuring these research spaces