Clearing the Pathways to Health Equity: Applied Public Health Chair

Appointment Title: Applied Public Health Chair

Project Title: Clearing Pathways to Health Equity

Read more. To download infographic below, click here.Applied Health Research Chair.



Before now, the ways in which health service and policies are delivered, evaluated, and researched have not included Indigenous ways of knowing or doing. We already know that:

  • Indigenous health inequities exist across Canada.
  • Evidence-informed health interventions for Indigenous populations require accurate and context-specific data on the Indigenous populations (much of which is has been non-existent).
  • Indigenous health interventions are more effective when Indigenous people are involved in the planning, implementing, and evaluating of the interventions.


Clearing the Pathways to Health Equity is aimed at developing, implementing, evaluating, and sharing health interventions that work for Indigenous populations. This is being accomplished by adapting widely accepted approaches to population health intervention research to be relevant and effective in Indigenous contexts.  We are developing, implementing, analyzing, and evaluating Indigenous health programs and policy interventions – informed by Indigenous leadership, partnership, and engagement. Using case studies and forming an Indigenous knowledge network on public health intervention research, we will: 1) produce consensus documents; 2) share what was learned from the work of an Indigenous knowledge network; 3) disseminate best practice guidelines for evaluating Indigenous health interventions; and 4) share what we know about the most promising health interventions of diverse Indigenous populations

Who and what is involved?

Dr. Janet Smylie is now the Applied Public Health Chair (2015-2020) in Indigenous Health Information and Knowledge Systems. Under Dr. Smylie’s leadership, a comprehensive and exciting 5-year program called Clearing the Pathways to Health Equity is now underway. Very diverse teams of Indigenous researchers, health partners, decision makers, communities, organizations, and other stakeholders will be involved throughout this program. Key partners and decision makers that will help realize how this research is used and disseminated include:

    • Native Women’s Association of Canada
    • National Collaborating Centre for Aboriginal Health
    • National Association of Friendship Centres
    • Native Youth Sexual Health Network
    • Indigenous Physicians Association of Canada
    • Aboriginal Nurses Association Canada
    • Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs
    • First Nations Health Authority
    • Aboriginal Research Network


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