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A critical geography of 'neighborhood effects' in health and child development

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Dr. Jim Dunn, CIHR-PHAC Chair in Applied Public on Interventions in Residential Neighbourhoods and Population Health, will speak as part of an Atkinson Centre Special Colloquium Series on Early Childhood and Families.


Room 9-105, 252 Bloor St., OISE/UT Toronto

Abstract: In a number of disciplines, there is an increasing interest in the 'effect' that attributes of collective social organization and the local built environment at neighborhood scale have on a variety of social outcomes, including health, health behaviors, early child development, youth delinquency, crime and deviance, political behavior, employment outcomes and other economic opportunities. A unifying feature of this kind of research is that it seeks to understand how, why and to what extent features of the local social environment, or neighborhood, shape individual outcomes over and above the effect of individual-level factors. I will identify some of the promise and pitfalls of neighborhood effects research, with emphasis on specific pathways between socio-economic dimensions of neighborhoods and both health and child development.

Bio: Dr. Jim Dunn holds a CIHR-PHAC Chair in Applied Public on Interventions in Residential Neighbourhoods and Population Health. He is a Research Scientist at the Centre for Research on Inner City Health (CRICH) at St. Michael's Hospital, Toronto, an Associate Professor of Geography and Public Health Sciences at the University of Toronto (UofT). His background is in the social geography of health, having earned a Ph.D. from Simon Fraser University in 1999. He is a member of the Editorial Advisory Board for Social Science and Medicine and Health Reports and has been a scientific advisor to a number of policy-related bodies, including the Privy Council Office of Canada, Health Canada, the National Housing Research Committee of Canada and the World Health Organization Regional Office for Europe. His research program focuses on questions regarding the social determinants of health and the influence of economic and social policies and programs on health inequalities, with a focus on urban housing and neighbourhoods.

Reception Following.

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