Kathleen Dobson is an associate scientist at the Institute for Work & Health. Dobson holds an MSc in health research methodology from McMaster University and is completing a PhD in epidemiology from the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto.
Dobson’s research explores the interplay of health, socioeconomic attainment and work conditions using complex observational data and longitudinal methods. Her current area of focus is the prevalence and economic consequences of mental illness and mental health among Canadian labour force participants.
Prior to Dobson’s current position, she was a research associate at the Institute for Work & Health, where her research projects focused on determining trajectories of health behaviours among working Canadians—e.g. smoking, alcohol use and body weight—and exploring how these trajectories are influenced by work environments. Dobson’s doctoral studies are supported in part by the IWH’s Syme Training Fellowship in Work and Health.
As an epidemiological scientist, I aim to answer questions that are of interest to scientists, policy-makers and, most importantly, Canadians from all walks of life. I can’t think of more important areas of study than work and health. They touch every aspect of our lives, from how we spend our days, to where we live, and to who we have in our social support networks. My research to date has been focused on the relationship between work and health over decades-long timelines, with long-term findings that offer valuable evidence to inform equitable health and employment policy.– Kathleen Dobson