Indigenous Health & Well-being Initiative


IHWI brings together researchers trained in Indigenous studies, geography, sociology, anthropology, occupational therapy, kinesiology, linguistics, critical literary studies and history. Drawing from diverse theoretical frameworks and methodological approaches to Indigenous research, the aim of the IHWI is to better conceptualize and measure the determinants of health and well-being, including location and place, environment, language and literacy, social structure, education policy, health policy, culture, history and governance practices. The IHWI Group will address uniquely important, yet appreciably complex, health and social issues that demand research paradigms that are rigorous yet flexible, culturally integrated and partnership driven. Building on the interdisciplinary nature of this group, the IHWI initiative will work in mutually beneficial ways to meet community needs, while at the same time providing leading edge training and development in Indigenous peoples Health and Well-being. The recognition that conceptions of Indigenous well-being are rooted in interconnected relationships between land and people, and the various social processes that tie them together, or drive them apart demands interdisciplinary approaches to understanding, measuring and teaching about these processes.

To learn more about the IHWI team, click on their names below.

Principal Investigators

Chantelle Richmond, PhD

Assistant Professor, Department of Geography

Cross Appointed with First Nations Studies & the Department of Family Medicine

Jerry White, PhD

Professor, Department of Sociology

Associate Dean, Faculty of Social Science


Rebecca Coulter, PhD

Professor, Faculty of Education

Regna Darnell, PhD

Professor, Department of Anthropology

Julia Emberley, PhD

Professor, Department of English

Michael HeinePhD

Assistant Professor, School of Kinesiology

Susan Hill, PhD

Associate Professor, Department of History

Director, First Nations Studies

Isaac Luginaah, PhD

Associate Professor, Department of Geography

Treena Orchard, PhD

Assistant Professor, School of Health Sciences

Joanna Quinn, PhD

Associate Professor, Political Science

Cross Appointed, Faculty of Law

Debbie Laliberte Rudman, PhD, OT Reg. (Ont.)

Associate Professor and Faculty Scholar, School of Occupational Therapy

Pauline Wakeham, PhD

Associate Professor, Department of English

Associate Researchers

Ahnungoonhs/Brent Debassige, PhD

Assistant Professor, Faculty of Education

Janice Forsythe, PhD

Assistant Professor, School of Kinesiology

Lina Sunseri, PhD

Assistant Professor, Sociology