What does ‘community’ in community-based research really mean?

The 21st century has seen a resurgence of interest in community-based approaches to research. This interest is primarily driven by the ineffectiveness of top-down approaches in addressing the needs of many communities across the globe. Furthermore, there is greater recognition that local people should be at the center of determining project priorities and solutions.  Community-based … More What does ‘community’ in community-based research really mean?

Towards Indigenous-led and culturally-responsive evaluations

This year’s Canadian Evaluation Society conference centred around the theme of co-creation. Co-creation is fundamentally about producing mutually beneficial outcomes together. Throughout the three packed days in Calgary, we explored new approaches to evaluation, with a focus on Indigenous, collaborative, culturally-responsive, and sustainability-ready approaches. Further, we were challenged to reflect on our privilege, on what … More Towards Indigenous-led and culturally-responsive evaluations

Putting health first in agricultural production

With the world population predicted to reach nine billion by 2050, increasing agricultural production will be necessary to achieve global food security. Efforts to expand food production will likely include agricultural intensification – producing more from the same area of land – which has been a key factor in boosting global food production in the … More Putting health first in agricultural production

A call for reflections in Ecohealth research

The 21st century presents us with some of the most profound global challenges including food insecurity, climate change, emerging diseases, and antimicrobial resistance. Agriculture can be considered a nexus between these challenges and is both parts of the problem and the solution. For instance, intensifying agricultural food production (i.e. increasing use of inputs for higher yields … More A call for reflections in Ecohealth research

What can we learn from farmer-led research?

Last week I attended Ecological Farmers Association of Ontario’s (EFAO’s) Farmer-led Research Workshop. As I entered the room on Day 1, I was pleased to see that participants were already deep in conversation – some were meeting for the first time, while others were catching up since the last time they met. This workshop provided … More What can we learn from farmer-led research?

Program evaluation and dose response: Application and reflection

In practice, evaluation takes place in a wide range of settings that perhaps constrain an evaluator’s choice of evaluation methods. For example, an evaluation may take place during implementation, rather than starting from the beginning. Or, ideas for interventions may emerge from various sources, affecting how much the evaluator can adopt an ideal evaluation design. … More Program evaluation and dose response: Application and reflection

Climate change impacts, and is impacted by, food production: a paradox

As emphasized in my previous post, there is growing scientific consensus that the world’s climate is changing (1). Though the timing and extent of such changes are likely to vary from one place to another, climate change undeniably impacts food production and health worldwide. With extreme temperatures, droughts, and floods, overall crop productivity decreases while … More Climate change impacts, and is impacted by, food production: a paradox

Towards understanding climate change evidence

There is an overwhelming scientific consensus that climate change is not only happening but also caused by humans. I think most people agree on this, although more so on the former. Perhaps, people have a basic understanding of how global warming works, and/or have noticed increasing extreme weather events lately such as record highs, or … More Towards understanding climate change evidence

Evaluations can be scary, even for the evaluator

Around the same time last year, I was struggling to find my place in the world of evaluation. Even though I had been taught evaluation theory and practice in graduate school, and gained relevant work experience outside of academia, I still did not feel comfortable considering myself a “program evaluator”. Evaluations, particularly of complex developmental … More Evaluations can be scary, even for the evaluator

Could loneliness be worse for your health than obesity?

A recent press release by the American Psychological Association says, “Loneliness and social isolation may represent a greater public health hazard than obesity, and their impact has been growing and will continue to grow”. Having just finished reading the book Social by Matthew Lieberman, and learning about our fundamental need to connect with other people, … More Could loneliness be worse for your health than obesity?