January 2015 Newsletter
What's in this issue:
Project Updates (Employment, Mobility, Sport, and Cross-Cutting),
Meet the Leadership Team,
Message from the Project Director
Since SSHRC's summer announcement of funding for Partnership Grants our team members have been busy hiring project staff, obtaining research ethics approvals, and designing and launching projects. The first two years of our 7-year timeline are largely focused on conducting projects to describe and understand employment, mobility and sport participation among persons with physical disabilities. You will see from the brief project descriptions below, we are well on our way to achieving these project goals.
In this edition, we also introduce our partnership’s leadership team. Our community and academic members will be introduced in subsequent editions.
If you have any feedback, ideas, or questions, we want to hear from you. If there is a project you would like to get involved in, please contact the Team's Research Lead. Of course you can always contact me directly at email@example.com or 905-525-9140 x 23574.
Kathleen Martin Ginis
Chair, Leadership Team
1.1 Employment Barrier Taxonomy: The purpose of this project is to classify the barriers to employment experienced by individuals with physical disabilities. We seek to develop an organized model focusing on the individual, the employer and the environment.
1.1 Defining Quality Participation: A working paper on the conceptualization of “quality” participation in the workforce. A working paper has been produced and is being used to guide the conceptualization and measurement of quality participation across the three domain teams.
1.2 Life-Course Analysis: This study will use key informant interviews and focus groups to compare the work experiences of young adults (18-30), middle-aged adults (30-55) and older workers (55+) with arthritis to determine the similarities and differences in employment transitions across the working life course. Within each life phase we also aim to compare the work experiences of individuals with earlier disease onset (e.g. disease onset at an earlier life phase) to individuals with later disease onset.
1.2 Performance Appraisal Study: This study will test the hypothesis that performance appraisals of people with disabilities tend to be less constructive and useful to the employee than those of people without disabilities.
1.4 Utility Analysis: We will conduct a formal cost-benefit analysis to assess the financial impact of employment accommodation policies and programs on Canadian employers. With the help of organizational data provided by Sodexo, we will quantify the net benefit of hiring and accommodating people with physical disabilities.
1.1 The aim of this sub-project is to determine the state of knowledge and research gaps, and to develop a testable conceptual model of participation via four literature reviews. A systematic review (title below) has been accepted for publication in Disability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology. A scoping review on scooter research is nearing completion and has been submitted for presentation at RESNA. A literature review and synthesis on physical environment, mobility and community participation among people with physical disabilities is also nearing completion, along with a scoping review on the impact of canes and walkers on social participation.
- Smith E, Sakakibara BM, Miller WC. A review of factors influencing participation in social and community activities for wheelchair users. Disability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology 2014 Dec 4:1-14. [Epub ahead of print].
1.2 Mixed-methods studies of mobility barriers and facilitators: A literature review has been conducted and a project proposal outlining research questions and methods has been written for the project; the team are working to refine this. The project will involve participatory action research that addresses questions such as, “what are mobility assistive technology users doing”, “where are they going?” and “what barriers are they encountering?” Methods such as Photovoice and prompted recall interviews based on GPS data will be used to answer these research questions. The team will reach out to community partners soon to get the participatory action model started. Ethics will likely be submitted in spring and data collection will begin in late spring.
1.1 A Systematic “Review of Reviews” of barriers and facilitators to sport and physical activity participation in persons with physical disabilities: A paper is in preparation that summarizes our findings and makes recommendations for practice. Our next step is to conduct a review to identify best practices for alleviating barriers and implementing facilitators to participation.
1.1 Defining Quality Participation: The purpose of this structured literature review is to develop a conceptual model defining quality participation in the context of sport. We will draw from variety of domains (e.g., occupational therapy, organizational behaviour, sport psychology) to develop the model and will engage an expert panel to review the model. One output of the project will be a checklist to identify aspects of "quality" sport experiences.
1.1 Quantification of sport participation among children, youth, and adults with physical disabilities: This project aims to collate existing data, and collect new data, that will provide estimates of sport participation among Canadian children with physical disabilities. Sources of data are currently being sought, and data collection methods are being designed.
1.2 Life-Course Analysis: The protocol for this study is still under development. The purpose of this project is to have athletes describe their sport participation history and identify factors that enhanced the quality of their experiences. Athletes of all levels of competition (recreation, competitive, elite) will be interviewed.
2.1 Environmental scan of knowledge mobilization methods and messengers to deliver physical activity information to people with disabilities: The purpose of this project is to catalogue existing Canadian informational/educational resources and programs designed to share knowledge about sport and physical activity for persons with disabilities.
2.2 Cross-Cutting Jurisdictional Policy Analysis: For each project associated with the partnership, a detailed policy analysis will be conducted to identify areas where policy both supports and hinders participation in employment, community mobility and physical activity. These analyses will assist in identifying opportunities for knowledge translation to policy makers, and for seeking structural changes to enhance participation.
The Leadership Team
Dr. Chris McBride
With over 20 years experience as a spinal cord injury researcher, research centre executive, volunteer, and now community service leader in the spinal cord injury sector, Chris brings a unique set of skills and experiences to his role as Executive Director of Spinal Cord Injury BC. Before arriving at Spinal Cord Injury BC, Chris served as Managing Director of ICORD, a world-leading spinal cord injury research centre at UBC and Vancouver Coastal Health, and as Managing Director and later Executive Director of Translational Research at the Rick Hansen Institute. Chris holds a PhD in Neuroscience from the University of British Columbia, where he also obtained a Bachelor of Science in Biopsychology.
Dr. Luc Noreau
As Scientific Director at the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Rehabilitation in Social Integration (CIRRIS) and Professor at the Rehabilitation Department, Laval University, Luc is internationally recognized as an expert in the study of social participation and disability and has led several cross-sector research and KM partnerships focused on enhancing participation in the disability community. From 2009-2013, he developed and led a team of researchers, clinicians and consumers, the SCI community survey, the largest study of its kind on community integration to ever be done in Canada among people with SCI.
Employment Team Leadership:
Mobility Team Leadership:
Sport Team Leadership:
The Canadian Disability Policy Alliance
By virtue of being a member of this partnership, you are also an honorary member of the CDPA! The CDPA aims to promote a vision of Canada where people with disabilities enjoy full participation and citizenship, supported by a coherent framework of legislation, regulation and programs. If you have not already done so, come visit our website (www.disabilitypolicyalliance.ca) and see some examples of the work we have done over the past 5 years.