issues and experts

BC COVID-19 Collaboration and Research Symposium: Experts available

August 27, 2020

The BC COVID-19 Collaboration and Research Symposium—a two-day virtual event Sept. 1-2—will showcase the latest research on the pandemic and its health impacts in this province.

The symposium is being organized by SFU’s Faculty of Health Sciences, together with the UBC’s School of Population and Public Health, the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research, the BC Academic Health Science Network and the BC SUPPORT Unit.

The event will bring together health, education, social sciences and humanities researchers and other key stakeholders focused on the impacts of COVID-19 and its associated public health measures on populations, public health, health services and other sectors throughout B.C.

Presentations spanning global health issues from leading B.C. researchers will follow four themes:

  • Development and implementation of public health measures
  • Population health impact of public health measures
  • Pandemic impact on health services and the workforce
  • Other impacts and unintended consequences of public health measures


The symposium will take place Sept. 1-2 from 8:45 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.

View the preliminary program and register for the symposium

The main sessions will be recorded and will be made publicly available following the symposium.


TANIA BUBELA, dean, Faculty of Health Sciences |

Expertise: Bubela sits on numerous COVID-19 research committees at both the provincial and national level, focused on developing strategic research priorities and coordinating research initiatives for maximum impact. Her research focuses on policy and governance of large-scale health research initiatives, with a focus on genomics and bio-therapeutics.

She is a co-lead on a new 15-month, $1.2-million return-to-work study, the “SARS‐CoV‐2 Study for Eased Restrictions in British Columbia” (SAfER) project, together with UBC, BCCDC, Provincial Health Services Authority, and supported by Genome BC, Genome Canada and industry partners.

VIENNA LAM,  doctoral student, School of Criminology & laboratory manager for the Forensic Entomology Lab at SFU's Centre for Forensic Research |

Expertise: Lam is studying how coroners/medical examiners and forensic pathologists have been impacted by COVID-19 and the issues of personal safety and emotional labour on frontline workers.

ZED ZHIPENG GAO, postdoctoral research fellow, Department of Sociology & Anthropology |

Expertise: Gao is studying Chinese immigrants' mental health, sense of (un)belonging, and experience of racism amid the COVID-19 pandemic and Canada-China tensions.

VALORIE CROOKS, Canada Research Chair in Health Service Geographies |

Expertise: Crooks is developing a series of maps that will identify where in B.C. people are more vulnerable to a COVID-19 outbreak to help decision-makers allocate resources to communities in need.


MELISSA SHAW, SFU Communications & Marketing 

236.880.3297 |

KATRINA SALVANTE, Faculty of Health Sciences 

778.960.2752 |