Associate Professor (Sociology); Chair, Sociology & Anthropology
BA (Guelph); MA, PhD (Western)
Dr. Richards’ research expertise in statistics and methods, including computer-assisted SPSS analysis, allows her to be a valuable resource for colleagues at U.P.E.I. She also supervises Sociology and Anthropology students in various grant-related projects–providing them with valuable experience and expertise. Her research and teaching have evolved to make her an expert in gerontological and demographic issues such as population aging, and aging and health as well as policy research and evaluation.
Dr. Richards’ research is at the forefront of areas that are extremely important in today’s society and heavily grounded in community issues related to seniors. With demographic trends, population aging, health, gerontology, and care giving increasingly salient issues in North America, especially in P.E.I., in the last four years (2004-2008), she has been involved as co-investigator in four projects that have involved over $ 4-million with academics, professionals, and community organizations all across Canada: 2006, Canadian Institute of Health Research, “Timely Access and Seamless Transitions in Rural Palliative/End-of-Life Care;” 2005, Public Health Agency of Canada, “Planning for Prince Edward Island’s Aging Population;” 2004, Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada-Community University Research Alliance,“ Atlantic Seniors Housing Research Alliance;” 2004, Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada, “Assessing the Quality and Variation of Public Policy in Canadian Municipalities.”
Dr. Richards’ latest project, in which she is Principal Investigator for Human Resources and Social Development Canada (HRSDC), is titled “Social Inclusion of the Oldest-Old: Toward Healthy Housing Policy.”
Her work and expertise have led to numerous consultations with the Federal, Provincial, and Municipal Governments, especially on projects related to seniors’ housing, elder abuse, and population aging.
Publications during this past year include “Determinants of Housing Among Canada’s Oldest-Old,” Journal of Housing for the Elderly, JL Richards and W. Rankaduwa; “A Meta-Analysis of Palliative and End-of-life Care Policies in Rural Canada: Explanations of Differential Patterns of Support and Services across the Provinces,” Journal of Palliative Care (forthcoming), JL Richards, K Whitfield, A Williams, ML Kelley and V Crooks; and “Image Building as Municipal Public Policies in PEI,” (Chapter), Heather Gushue and JL Richards, McGill Queens. Conference presentations include papers and posters at the Population Work and Family Cluster, sponsored by HRSDC and the Policy Research Initiative Office, Ottawa; Canadian Association on Gerontology (London, Ontario, Fall 2008).
Dr. Richards’ additional research-related roles have included: Member, UPEI Research Ethics Board (REB) and Chair, Arts Faculty Ethics Committee, and Member of the PEI Health Research Institute (HRI) Research Committee, set up to provide guidance on research directions to the provincial PEI HRI and to review proposals that move forward to CIHR.