Katie Aubrecht, PhD
I am a disability studies scholar and health services and social policy researcher with a PhD in sociology of education (2012) from the University of Toronto (Department of Social Justice Education, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education). I have a Master of Arts in sociology from York University, and a Bachelor of Arts (first class honours) in sociology from STFX. I currently hold a Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Health Equity and Social Justice with the Department of Sociology at St. Francis Xavier University (STFX) and am affiliated with the Maritime Strategy for Patient-Oriented Research Support Unit (MSSU) as an Associate Scientist.
My research aims to contribute to knowledge that can be used to improve the quality of care and the self-perceived health of people living in rural communities who experience mental health and marginalization on the basis of disability, age, race, ethnicity, indigeneity, sexuality, and socio-economic status. I examine marginality and mental health, rurality and resilience across the life span as health equity and social justice issues.
My current program of work builds on my experiences as Research Coordinator at the Nova Scotia Centre on Aging (2011-17) and postdoctoral research with the Department of Family Studies and Gerontology (2013-18) at Mount Saint Vincent University (MSVU) examining person- and family-centred dementia care practices, programs and policies. This research was supported by external funding from two Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) postdoctoral fellowships (2013-16/2017-18), and a MSSU Postdoctoral Award (2017). It is also informed by my graduate research on Canadian mental health policy funded by Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) Canada Graduate Scholarship doctoral and master’s awards (2005/2007-2010).
I have received funding from the Canadian Foundation for Innovation for my Spatializing Care: Intersectional Disability Studies Research Lab at STFX. The lab is home to a participatory arts-informed health research infrastructure that supports and enhances meaningful and ethical community engagement, and that connects and crosses disciplinary and sectoral boundaries, bridging medical, social and cultural approaches to mental health care.
I welcome opportunities to work with undergraduate and graduate students in my capacity as Adjunct Professor, and encourage any students with shared research interests to connect with me. Additional information about me can be found at www.katieaubrecht.com
Special Journal Issues
Aubrecht, Katie. (Guest Editor). (2020). Special Issue of Societies, “Corporealities of Care Research & Policy: Intersectional & Arts-Based Approaches.”
Aubrecht, Katie and Nancy La Monica (Guest Editors). (2019). Special Issue of the Canadian Journal of Disability Studies “Survivals, Ruptures, Resiliences: Perspectives from Disability Scholarship, Art and Activism.”
Aubrecht, Katie (Guest Editor). (2013). Special Issue of Health, Culture & Society, “Translating Happiness: Medicine, Culture and Social Progress,” 5(1), i-xiii. Retrieved from http://hcs.pitt.edu/ojs/index.php/hcs/issue/current/showToc
Sim, Meaghan, Jonathan Lai, Katie Aubrecht, Ivy Cheng, Mark Embrett, El Kabir Ghandour, Margaret Saari, Megan Highet, Rebecca Liu, Christiane Pereira, M. Casteli, Samirato Ouedraogo, and Hazel Williams-Roberts. (2019). “CIHR Health System Impact Fellows: Reflections On ‘Driving Change’ Within the Health System.” International Journal of Health Policy and Management. Retrieved from https://www.ijhpm.com/article_3584_4f4838963fc09867e1077a3bdb7b0394.pdf doi 10.15171/ijhpm.2018.124
Aubrecht, Katie. (2019). “‘Nothing But’: University Student Mental Health and the Hidden Curriculum of Academic Success.” The Canadian Journal of Disability Studies.
Aubrecht, Katie and Nancy La Monica. (2017). “(Dis)Embodied Disclosure in Higher Education: A Co-Constructed Narrative,” Canadian Journal of Higher Education, 47(3), 1-15.
Aubrecht, Katie. (2016). “Psy-Times: The Psycho-Politics of Resilience in University Student Life,” in the special issue, Mad Studies: Intersections with Disability Studies, Social Work, and ‘Mental Health’, Intersectionalities: A Global Journal of Social Work Analysis, 5(2), 186-200.
Aubrecht, Katie and Tamara Krawchenko. (2016). “Disability and Aging: Research, Theory and Policy Perspectives.” Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal.12(2&3), 3-10.
Aubrecht, Katie. (2016). “Deep Impact: Introduction – Pacific Rim Forum.” Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal, 11(4).
Titchkosky, Tanya and Katie Aubrecht. (2015). “WHO’S MIND, Whose Future?: Mental Health Policies as Colonial Logics,” Special Issue: Disability & Colonialism: (Dis)encounters and Anxious Intersectionalities, Social Identities: Journal for the Study of Race, Nation and Culture, 21(1), 1-16.
Aubrecht, Katie. (2014 ). “Disability Studies and the Language of Mental Illness.” Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal, 8(2), 31-44. https://www.rdsjournal.org/index.php/journal/article/view/98
Aubrecht, Katie. (2013). “Translating Happiness.” Health, Culture & Society, 5(1), i-xiii.
Aubrecht, Katie. (2012). “The ‘New Vocabulary’ of Resilience and the Governance of University ‘Student Life’.” Special Issue of Studies in Social Justice:“The Politics of Resilience and Recovery in Mental Health Care,” 6(1), 67-83.
Fancey, Pamela, Janice Keefe, Robin Stadynk, Emily Gardiner and Katie Aubrecht. (2012). “Understanding and Assessing the Impact of Nursing Home Approach to Care and Physical Design on Residents and their Families: A Synthesis of the Literature.” Seniors Housing & Care Journal. 20(1), 99-114.
Manuscripts – Edited Books
Aubrecht, Katie, Christine Kelly and Carla Rice. (Eds.). (Under Contract, Forthcoming). Aging/Disability Nexus. Disability Culture and Politics Series, Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press.
Aubrecht, Katie. (Accepted). “Family Issues: An Intersectional Analysis Canadian University Policies for Students Experiencing Displacement, Disablement and Distress” in Linda Steele, Penelope Weller, and Claire Spivakovsky (Eds.), The Legacies of Institutionalisation: Disability, Law and Policy in the ‘Deinstitutonalised’ Community.Hart-Bloomsbury Publishing’s Onati International Series in Law and Society.
Aubrecht, Katie and Akwasi Boafo. (Accepted). “Deconstructing Dependency and Development in Global Dementia Policy,” in Katie Aubrecht, Christine Kelly and Carla Rice (Eds.), Aging/Disability Nexus. Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press.
Titchkosky, Tanya and Katie Aubrecht. (2017). ““One in Five”: The Prevalence Problematic in Mental Illness Discourse,” in Critical Inquiries for Social Justice in Mental Health (pp. 312-332). Marina Morrow and Lorraine Halinka Malcoe (Eds.). Toronto: University of Toronto Press.
Aubrecht, Katie and Janice Keefe. (2016). “‘Everybody Has Different Levels of Why They Are Here’: Deconstructing Domestication in the Nursing Home Setting.” In Michael Rembis (Ed.), Disabling Domesticity (pp. 215-239). New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
Titchkosky, Tanya and Katie Aubrecht. (2016). “WHO’S MIND, Whose Future?: Mental Health Policies as Colonial Logics.” In Karen Soldatic and Shaun Grech (Eds.), Disability and (Post)Colonial Identities, New York: Routledge.
Aubrecht, Katie and Izzy Mackenzie Lay. (2016). “Solidarity in the Solitudes of Student Life: Contemporary Women Students Discuss Life and Work in the Academy,” in Solitudes of the Workplace: Women in Universities, Elvi Whitaker (Ed.). Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 118-135.
Aubrecht, Katie. (2014). “Re-Imagining Success: Ordinary Orders and University Student ‘Mental Life’,” in Reimagining Education Reform and Innovation, Matthew Lynch (Ed.). New York: Peter Lang, 55-76.
Fabris, Erick and Katie Aubrecht. (2014). “Chemical Constraint: Experiences of Psychiatric Coercion, Restraint, and Detention as Carceratory Techniques,” in Disability Incarcerated: Imprisonment and Disability in North America, Allison Carey, Chris Chapman and Liat Ben-Moshe (Eds.). Palgrave Macmillan, 185-200.
Aubrecht, Katie. (2015). “Illuminating Times: Age and Disability.” Review of The Silvering Screen: Old Age and Disability in Cinema (Chivers, 2011, Toronto: University of Toronto Press). Canadian Journal of Disability Studies, 4(1). Retrieved from http://cjds.uwaterloo.ca/index.php/cjds/article/view/193
Health Ethics Blog (Invited Book Review)
Aubrecht. Katie. (2016, January 26). “Disentangling Alzheimer’s, Dementia and Aging.” Impact Ethics, Novel Tech Ethics, Faculty of Medicine, Dalhousie University. Retrieved from
Aubrecht, Katie (Working Group Lead). (2018). Person and Family Centered Complex Dementia Behavioural Health Model of Care. Nova Scotia Health Authority Continuing Care report prepared for the Nova Scotia Department of Health and Wellness.
Keefe, Janice, Katie Aubrecht and Kaitlyn Delaney. (2015). Building Research Capacity to Examine Home and Community Supports – Provincial Service Delivery Models. Halifax: Nova Scotia Centre on Aging, Mount Saint Vincent University. 13 pp.
Aubrecht, Katie, Janice Keefe, Lisa Bowers, and Marco Redden. (2018). Faculty Mentoring and
Pedagogical Partnerships: Perspectives from a Teaching and Research Collaboration on Reminiscence Work in Nova Scotia Museums.” Proceedings of the Atlantic Universities’ Teaching Showcase.
 “WHO’s MIND” makes reference to the World Health Organization Mental Health Improvements for Nation’s Development Project.