Dr. Sherilee Harper

Dr. Sherilee Harper

Biography

Sherilee Harper is an Associate Professor at the University of Alberta.  Her research investigates associations between weather, water, and Indigenous health in the context of climate change, and she collaborates with Indigenous partners to prioritise climate-related health actions, planning, interventions, and research.

She is currently a collaborator in an international research initiative called the “Indigenous Health Adaptation to Climate Change” (IHACC) project, which works closely with Indigenous peoples and their organizations in the Canadian Arctic, Ugandan Impenetrable Forest, and the Peruvian Amazon.  The project aims to combine science and traditional knowledge to strengthen health systems in light of a rapidly changing climate, within three areas of foci: food security, malaria, and waterborne disease.  Sherilee is also a co-investigator on the “Indigenous Peoples Adapting to the Health Effects of Climate Change” (IK-ADAPT) project, which works with Indigenous communities and knowledge users in the Canadian Arctic to develop and apply a framework for adaptation assessment, and develop and evaluate pilot interventions for adaptation to the health impacts of climate change.

Sherilee has worked with the Rigolet Inuit Community Government to develop a 3-year community-led, capacity-building research program, called the “Changing Climate, Changing Stories, Changing Health” project.  As Co-Director of this program (with Ashlee Cunsolo Willox), she assisted the small community secure research funds to use culturally appropriate methods to examine the impacts of climate change on health and well-being.  Specifically, this project used qualitative methods and digital media to engage the community in climate-health research and to create locally-appropriate public health media.  This project led to the development of the My Word’: Storytelling and Digital Media Lab, which has a multi-media lab in Rigolet which offers research assistance and a host of services and workshops to individuals and communities.

Selected Publications

Conevska, A., Ford, J., Lesnikowski, A., Harper, S.L., (2018). Adaptation financing for projects focused on food systems through the UNFCCC. Climate PolicyClick here to access the article.

Ford, J.D., Sherman, M., Berrang-Ford, L., Llanos, A., Carcamo, C., Harper, S.L., Lwasa, S., Namanya, D.B., Marcello, T., Maillet, M., Edge, V. (2018). Preparing for the health impacts of climate change in Indigenous communities: The role of community-based adaptation. Global Environmental Change. 49: 129–139.  Click here for free article (open access).

*Wright, C.J., Sargeant, J.M., Edge, V.L., Ford, J.D., Farahbakhsh, K., Shiwak, I., Flowers, C., Gordon, A.C., RICG, IHACC Research Team (Berrang-Ford, L., Carcamo, C., Llanos, A., Lwasa, S., Namanya, D.B.), Harper, S.L.(2018). How are perceptions associated with water consumption in Canadian Inuit? A cross-sectional survey in Rigolet, Labrador. Science of The Total Environment, 618(15): 369–378. Click here to access the article.

Flynn, M., Ford, J., Pearce, T., Harper, S.L., IHACC Research Team (2018). Participatory scenario planning and climate change impacts, adaptation and vulnerability research in the Arctic. Environmental Science & Policy. 79:45–53. Click here to access the article.

Marshall, R., Levison, J., McBean, E., Brown, E., Harper, S.L. (2018). Source water protection programs and Indigenous communities in Canada and the United States: a scoping review. Journal of Hydrology. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jhydrol.2018.04.070

*King, N., Vriezen, R., Edge, V.L., Ford, J., Wood, M., IHACC Research Team, Harper, S.L. (2018). The hidden costs: Identification of indirect costs associated with acute gastrointestinal illness in an Inuit community. PloS One, 13(5), e0196990. Click here for free article (open access).