PRINCE GEORGE, B.C. – Dr. Margot Parkes from the University of British Columbia along with partners from across Canada have secured a five-year research grant focused on ‘working together across sectors to prevent adverse impacts from resource development.’
The main areas of focus will be on rural, remote and Indigenous communities.
“The research team is led by a steering committee comprised of different sectors, disciplines and communities, which is co-chaired by Dr. Parkes and Dr. Sandra Allison, chief medical health officer at Northern Health.”
The team will have more than 60 members which include other UNBC members.
“Our research team will be looking at the impacts of resource development as a whole, including health, community and environmental considerations,” said Dr. Parkes, a Health Sciences associate professor and Canada Research Chair in Health, Ecosystems and Society. “Exploring ways to work together across sectors and jurisdictions is a key part of this project, as well as working with research partners from across Canada and other parts of the world.
“Our goal is to encourage more integration, bringing together knowledge from across sectors, disciplines and organizations to address impacts of resource development that cannot be achieved by the health sector alone. We have a lot to learn about how to work together on these kinds of issues. The aim is not to fix things when they go wrong but to prevent them in the first place.”
Researchers will use current understanding of impact assessment, indicators and lived experiences, and the research will focus on finding ways to better recognize and respond to cumulative impacts resulting from past and ongoing resource development.
UNBC says the research study is funded by a team grant as part of CIHR’s Environments and Health Signature Initiative.