Work and Health Initiative Scientific meeting

September 2013
Toronto, Ontario


  • Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)

  • Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC)


In September 2013, CIHR and SSHRC co-hosted a one-day invitational Scientific Meeting. This meeting brought together a multi-disciplinary group of leading researchers with expertise in work and health. The purpose of this meeting was to seek input from leading researchers on the proposed focus and future directions of a transformational research initiative on work and health.


  • To brief participants on progress to date in the development of the work and health initiative.

  • To seek expert input on the proposed focus of the initiative (workplace accommodation).

    • To validate the proposed focus of the initiative

    • To refine the focus of the initiative (how can we optimize the initiative/make it most impactful? are there gaps in how it is presently conceptualized?)

    • To identify and prioritize relevant multidisciplinary/multisectoral research topics and questions (what are the most significant research topics and questions relating to workplace accommodation?)

    • To gauge Canadian research capacity in this area (do we have the highly qualified personnel necessary to achieve the goals of this initiative?)

    • To identify potential partners for this initiative


Overall, participants highly valued the possibilities for a transformative, transdisciplinary, collaborative research initiative to create a more inclusive workforce and workplaces. The group articulated the desired impacts, provided insights about the scope and framing, and suggested how to describe and structure the initiative for the most meaningful collaborations.

Meeting Report

Participants’ input is summarized in a meeting report.

Next steps

The researcher input will shape this evolving initiative, as will the next phase of consultation with partners and knowledge users. A partner forum is planned for 2014. In the lead-up to this forum, we will continue seeking input from key stakeholders. Resources for the Work and Health Initiative will be leveraged through partnerships – both financial and in-kind – such as providing access to work environments where studies can be carried out or interventions tested. These partnerships will be formed early in the initiative so that partners’ priorities will shape the development and direction of the Work and Health Initiative.

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