People profiles

Eva Dodsworth

Eva Dodsworth, BA, MLIS

Geospatial Data Services Librarian

Thinking spatially

Eva Dodsworth is the Geospatial Data Services Librarian at the University of Waterloo (UW) Library where she is responsible for the provision of leadership and expertise in developing, delivering, and assessing geospatial data services and programs offered to members of the UW community.

Sebastian Filep

Sebastian Filep, PhD

Senior Lecturer

Examining Tourism and its contributions to human flourishing and well-being

Multiple knowledge platforms have thus far emerged in tourism studies, yet one important knowledge platform remains under developed. A humanist body of knowledge is needed that explains what enables host communities to flourish, what encourages workers in tourism to thrive, and what characterizes optimal tourist experiences. The aim of building this knowledge platform is to establish conditions for human flourishing and well-being in tourism contexts and to outline strategies for building greater well-being of tourism stakeholders. In this way, Professor Filep is working towards developing positive tourism, principally grounded in well-being theories from positive psychology (the study of what makes life worth living).

Troy Glover

Troy D. Glover, PhD

Professor and Healthy Communities Research Network Director

A focus on transformative placemaking

A healthy community requires healthy connections, and healthy connections require quality places in which meaningful social ties can develop and thrive. Accordingly, Troy Glover, professor in the Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies, director of the Healthy Communities Research Network, and member of the Placemaking Leadership Council of the Project for Public Spaces, focuses his attention on what he refers to as transformative placemaking, the creation of positive change for people and communities through the (re)shaping, (re)territorializing, and (re)making of community.

Taryn Graham and her dog

Taryn Graham, MA

Doctoral Candidate

Pets and their implications for community well-being

Taryn Graham promotes health in urban communities through human-animal interactions. Taryn's graduate work as a Master's student examined social inequalities among pet owners in public space, which involved collaborating with dog walkers, non-dog walkers, municipal leaders, and key stakeholders to provide recommendations on pet-friendly policies that respected safety concerns of the broader community and needs of the environment.
Tom Griffin

Tom Griffin, PhD

Assistant Professor

Exploring the role of hosting friends and relatives in community integration

Tom's research interests revolve around visiting friends and relatives (VFR) travel, specifically the experiences of immigrants in Toronto who host friends and relatives and the implications for individual and community development, as well as for tourism service providers and destination marketers.

Amanda Johnson

Amanda Johnson, PhD

Assistant Professor

The landscapes of everyday life

How important are parks, playgrounds, farmers’ markets, restaurants, or even streets and sidewalks to our quality of community life? Amanda Johnson's research endeavours to explore these landscapes of everyday life to understand the community-based meanings and perceptions associated with these places. Specifically, her research examines how people interact in everyday places to understand how these places can be managed to allow for everyday and practical uses by a diversity of individuals and communities.

Cathy McAllister

Cathy McAllister, PhD

Community Researcher

Prioritizing urban nature

Cathy explores the mental, physical and social health benefits of time spent in nature. Given the fact that people spend increasing amounts of time in urban environments, she continues to search for effective ways to promote interactions with nature and ensure that communities put a priority on maintaining urban nature.
Diana Parry

Diana Parry, PhD

Associate Professor

Women, leisure, and social justice

Diana Parry is an associate professor in the Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies at the University of Waterloo. Utilizing a feminist lens, Diana's research explores the personal and political links between women's leisure and women's health, broadly defined. Her work privileges women's standpoints and aims to create social change and enact social justice by challenging the medical model of scholarship.

Zara Rafferty

Zara Rafferty, MA

Lecturer

The role of youth in building healthy communities

Community capacity-building is often thought to be the domain of adults. However, for youth to feel a sense of ownership in their communities, it is critical that they are meaningfully engaged in change efforts at the local level. Zara's interest is in facilitating opportunities for teenagers and young adults to contribute to their communities using experiential education as a vehicle. Through her teaching practice, she engages her students in community partnerships with local not-for-profit organizations and elementary schools
Bronwen Valtchanov, MA

Bronwen Valtchanov

Doctoral candidate

Studying women in transition

Bronwen’s research focuses on the social determinants of health for women in marginalized or changing communities, including mothers, immigrant adolescent girls, and federally sentenced women.