Kristin Atwood, University of Victoria

Name: Kristin Atwood

Position: Affiliate Member, School of Public Health and Social Policy, University of Victoria

Educational Background:
PhD, Sociology, University of Calgary, 2014

Professional Background and Affiliations: 

  • Current: Project Lead, Transitions in Care, Victoria Division of Family Practice
  • Past: Consultant: Associate, Elevate Consulting, Owner, Agency Research Consultants
  • Associations: Canadian Sociological Association, Pacific Sociological Association

Contact Information / Personal Website:

What are your main research interests? 

  • Families
  • Communication Systems
  • Health care,
  • Research Methods

What projects are you currently working on?

  • Victoria Walk in Clinic (VicWIC) Study
  • Secure Messaging and Clinical Communications Solution (SMaCCS) project
  • Structural and relational enablers of primary care transformation
  • Knowledge mobilization through live theatre

What interesting findings have emerged from your work? How have they been applied?

Health technology solutions cannot be implemented without extensive relationship-building and clinical co-design and are dependent on physician capacity for change. As healthcare is a siloed, fragmented sector, it is difficult to fully comprehend the reasons why communication gaps arise or the potential unintended consequences of using specific technology solutions to address them. My experience with sociological methods such as institutional ethnography enabled me to develop simple, sustainable, and scalable technology solutions after I addressed the human side of change, so that uptake became routine and maintenance was not difficult to embed in standard work practices.

Are there other aspects of your work or your interests that you would like to share?

In addition to my paid research, I volunteer as a knowledge philanthropist for Generation Squeeze, a national research, education, and advocacy organization, as well as for my local neighbourhood association. Both my ability to view issues sociologically and my knowledge of research methods has enabled me to support these volunteer organizations, expanding their capacity to make improvements for young Canadians and for my community.

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