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Truth and Reconciliation Through Indigenous Health Research: An Instrumental Case Study in the College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan

dc.contributor.advisorAbonyi, Sylvia
dc.contributor.committeeMemberEngler-Stringer, Rachel
dc.contributor.committeeMemberKing, Malcolm
dc.contributor.committeeMemberBruce, Sharon
dc.creatorEpp, Lynette J
dc.creator.orcid0000-0003-0365-2795 2020
dc.description.abstractConcern for the health and wellbeing of Indigenous peoples in Canada is at the heart of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s (TRC) Calls to Action and Principles of Reconciliation. Universities have developed responses to the TRC, but to date few have discussed truth and reconciliation in the context of academic research. Historically, Indigenous health research (IHR) has been used as a tool of colonization in Canada, and harm to Indigenous peoples and communities is still occurring through IHR. Thus, it is imperative to consider implications of the TRC’s work in relation to university-based IHR. An instrumental case study in the College of Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan was undertaken to explore understandings and applications of truth and reconciliation in university-based IHR. Guided conversations with five Indigenous and six non-Indigenous faculty involved in IHR were complemented by analysis of key institutional documents and information on the university context from nine key informants. An iterative approach to data collection and analysis was informed by advisors from within the university community and member checking by participants. Informed by a decolonizing framework, principles of respect, reciprocity, relevance and responsibility were central to the undertaking of the project. Data revealed a multi-faceted understanding of truth and reconciliation in IHR. IHR has the potential to contribute to truth and reconciliation when conducted in a manner that attends to issues such as Indigenous self-determination, decolonization, ethical conduct, power and control. A model of ‘reconciliatory research’ is presented as a guide to considerations for substantive and procedural aspects of IHR. The model is centered in relationality, with actionable pathways supporting key characteristics of ‘reconciliatory research’. However, tensions between features of reconciliatory research and university values, norms, processes and policies impede researchers’ efforts towards truth and reconciliation through IHR. The resulting barriers are indicative of systemic and institutional racism around university-based Indigenous health research, with implications for Indigenous peoples’ health and wellbeing. Researchers and universities have particular responsibilities to ensure that university-based Indigenous health research is conducted in a manner that facilitates truth and reconciliation. Systemic changes are required to address institutional barriers to reconciliatory IHR and to ensure that such research is conducted in a manner that supports Indigenous sovereignty, health and wellbeing.
dc.subjectTRC, Truth and reconciliation, Indigenous Health Research, Decolonized methodology, Case study methodology, Universities and TRC, Reconciliatory research
dc.titleTruth and Reconciliation Through Indigenous Health Research: An Instrumental Case Study in the College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan
dc.type.materialtext Health and Epidemiology and Population Health Science of Saskatchewan of Science (M.Sc.)


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