issues and experts

An Omicron winter: SFU experts available over the holidays

December 21, 2021

Canadians will once again be celebrating the holidays with caution under new restrictions introduced to slow the spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19.

While in the Fraser Valley, flood rebuilding efforts continue with snow in the forecast to arrive across the Lower Mainland later this week. 

The following Simon Fraser University experts are generally available over the holiday break to provide comment on breaking news and offer their insights on various ongoing issues.


CAROLINE COLIJN, Canada 150 Research Chair in Mathematics for Evolution, Infection and Public Health
Expertise: COVID-19 vaccine efficacy, role of data modelling in predicting disease spread, COVID-19 variants, vaccines and vaccinations  

JULIANNE PIPER, research fellow and project coordinator for Pandemics and Borders research team
Expertise: Cross-border measures, travel/border policies, public health intelligence/Global Public Health Intelligence Network (GPHIN)

JULIA SMITH, assistant professor, health sciences & faculty member, Centre for Gender and Sexual Health Equity
604.837.4285 |
Expertise: The impact of the pandemic on women, including her new studyhighlighting the struggles faced by women physicians

VALORIE CROOKS, Canada Research Chair in Health Service Geographies
604.417.9007 | 
Expertise: The impending departure of Canadian snowbirds for winter, ongoing travel & border measures, vaccine tourism


ANGELA KAIDA,  associate professor, health sciences & Canada Research Chair Tier II in Global Perspectives in HIV and Sexual and Reproductive Health
Expertise: Countering stigma and discrimination of women living with HIV; sharing results of a study on the topic through a new film, HIV Made Me Fabulous. See more on this topic here.


STEWART PREST,  lecturer, political science (limited availability)
Expertise: B.C. politics and health restrictions


JOHN CLAGUE, professor emeritus, Earth sciences
604.921.9904 |
Expertise: Climate impacts on natural hazards/earthquake activity

PASCAL HAEGELI, NSERC Industrial Research Chair in Avalanche Risk Management
604.773.0854 |
Expertise: Impact of rainfall on snow melt; high to extreme avalanche alerts

BRENT WARD, professor, Earth sciences, co-director, Centre for Natural Hazards Research
604.771.5829 |
Expertise: Impact of natural landslides on creeks, rivers & fish habitat
- How to make communities more resilient to climate change & flooding
- Lingering impacts of flood events


MELISSA SHAW, SFU  Communications & Marketing 
236.880.3297 | 

Simon Fraser University
Communications & Marketing |  SFU Media Experts Directory


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