Calendar pic.PNG

Summer training seminars

Every two years, the PROSPERED research fellows gather in Montreal for intensive training in impact evaluation methods and career development. For 2018, we are opening the career development and research-to-policy skills workshops to all interested graduate students and early career researchers working in quantitative social or health sciences. Participants from outside McGill University are welcome. Invited experts will give interactive half-day workshops from June 28-July 11. 

All workshops are from 9:30am-12:00pm in conference room 101 of Charles Meredith House, 1130 avenue des Pins ouest, unless otherwise noted. 

To register for any of the workshops, contact the program administrator at 

Career Development in Policy Evaluation and Population Health

June 28

Transparency and reproducibility of research with Sam Harper


Location: Room 24 of Purvis Hall, 1020 Pine Ave Wes

Dr. Sam Harper of McGill’s department of Epidemiology, Occupational Health and Biostatistics will present best practices for transparency and reproducibility of research in health and social policy evaluation, including options for registering research plans and making datasets publicly available.

July 2

Discussion on the journal submission process


Dr. Jay Kaufman, editor of the international journal Epidemiology and Professor in McGill’s Department of Epidemiology, Biostatistics & Occupational Health, will discuss scientific publishing, including types of journals, open access policies, and the review process (from both sides).  The landscape of options is changing by the day, and some trends, such as predatory journals, present challenges for young researchers.  We will discuss formatting, choice of journal, types of charges, and navigating the review and publication processes for public health and biomedical journals.  Reporting practices for statistical methods will also be discussed, including controversies over testing, replication, funding and conflicts of interest. 


Panel discussion on academic careers in impact evaluation

The three panelists in this workshop represent early, mid and late career stages, and will discuss lessons learned so far about planning and pursuing a career in policy evaluation.

Dr. Ignacio Nazif-Munoz is a Steinberg Global Health Postdoctoral Fellow in the Institute of Health and Social Policy at McGill University. His research has been published in journals such as International Journal of Comparative Sociology, Injury Prevention and Traffic Injury Prevention, and cited in United Nations’ resolutions (i.e. General Assembly A/68/368). He has worked as a consultant for the Pan-American Health Organization, the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, and the Inter-American Development Bank. His research expertise includes global health, globalization, road safety, road users’ vulnerable populations, policy diffusion, and policy evaluation.

Dr. Erin Strumpf is an associate professor at the Department of Economics and the Department of Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Occupational Health at McGill University and a founding member of McGill’s Public Policy and Population Health Observatory (3po). She is affiliated with McGill’s Institute of Health and Social Policy, Family Medicine Department, and Centre on Population Dynamics, as well as the University of Montreal’s Institut de recherche en santé publique (IRSPUM). Dr. Strumpf holds a PhD in Health Policy and Economics from Harvard University, and a BA from Smith College. She is a William Dawson Scholar at McGill University and holds a Chercheur-boursier Junior 2 from the Fonds de Recherche du Québec – Santé.

Third panelist TBA.

July 4

Communications training workshop for early career researchers

This energetic  and participatory 2 ½ hr workshop will provide participants with an introduction to the communication skills that are essential to sharing research with policy makers, media and the general public. The workshop is offered in English, but we can accommodate French-speakers in the various activities.

What to bring:

  • 2 objects:  One that is related to your research and another that is unrelated to your work.

What to send us by June 25:

  • Either the first paragraph of an op-ed you could write (tips about how to write them here) OR a couple of lines about 2 subjects that you can talk about as an expert to media and the community. 

Please let us know in your registration e-mail:

  • Why you want to attend the workshop
  • What outreach activities you are already engaged in or have planned for the future.


Grants and funding workshop with Graphos writing centre

Grant writing skills are a mainstay for academic and many professional research careers. This 2.5-hour interactive Graphos workshop will cover:

  • key characteristics of grant writing (as distinct from academic writing);
  • how to read to a funding opportunity (grant agency, foundation);
  • how to effectively communicate the scientific merit and impact of your research.
Heidi photo.jpg

Facilitator: Heidi Hoernig holds a Ph.D. in Planning from the University of Waterloo and has spent the last seven years providing strategic and pre-award support for more than 400 grant applications by McGill faculty from the social sciences, humanities, and health sciences. She has also convened a SSHRC Graphos peer writing group for the last two years.



Scientific writing

Dr. Emily DeVoto, Deputy Editor of Epidemiology, will share her experience of common mistakes and best practices specific to writing for scientific journals. Instruction will cover aspects of writing style: readability, clarity, and engaging the reader through scientific story-telling. Dr. DeVoto will also give advice on formatting for scientific publications, such as presenting figures and tables, and how to read the journal’s specific style guidelines and integrate them with general style guidelines. Participants will be asked to bring a recent paper draft with them. 

Research to Policy

July 9

Evaluating the health impacts of public policies in the MDG/SDG era: lessons learned and future directions


Location: Thomson House ballroom, 3650 McTavish St, Montreal

In this panel PROSPERED investigators Drs. Jody Heymann and Arijit Nandi will discuss what they have learned through the measurement and evaluation of the health impacts of public policies, as well as their hopes for the future of the field. As the founding director of the WORLD Policy Analysis Center, Dr. Heymann will reflect on what the PROSPERED project has learned about methods for coding social policy data, factors influencing trends in policy approaches, where data gaps exist, and how we might do things differently as we look forward and consider policy instruments for achieving the health-related Sustainable Development Goals. This will be complemented by Dr. Arijit Nandi, Principal Investigator of the PROSPERED project, who will speak about what the team has learned from nearly eight years of health and social policy evaluation research, and where we might go in the future.

ari sized.jpg

Arijit Nandi holds a Canada Research Chair in the Political Economy of Global Health and is PI of the PROSPERED project. He is an Associate Professor jointly appointed at the Institute for Health and Social Policy and the Department of Epidemiology, Biostatistics, and Occupational Health. A former Robert Wood Johnson Health and Society Scholar at Harvard University, Arijit received a PhD from the Department of Epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.


Jody Heymann, MD, PhD is the Dean of the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health. Heymann serves as Founding Director of the WORLD Policy Analysis Center. An unprecedented effort to improve the level and quality of comparative policy data available to policymakers, researchers and the public, WORLD examines over 1500 aspects of health and social policies in all 193 UN countries. Heymann has worked with leaders globally as well as a wide range of intergovernmental organizations including the World Health Organization, the International Labor Organization, the World Economic Forum, UNICEF and UNESCO. Heymann was elected to the US National Academy of Medicine and the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences.


Promoting evidence-based public health: obstacles and opportunities

14:00-16:00. Reception to follow.

Location: Thomson House ballroom, 3650 McTavish St, Montreal

The aim of this panel, featuring PROSPERED investigators Drs. Patricia García and John Frank, is to illuminate challenges and opportunities for promoting a more evidence-based public health. Dr. García will draw on her experiences as a researcher and former Dean of the School of Public Health at Cayetano Heredia University in Lima, Chief of the Peruvian National Institute of Health, and Minister of Health for Peru to highlight challenges to advancing programs for improving sexual and reproductive health in Peru, as well as tools for overcoming these barriers. Dr. John Frank, a researcher and former Scientific Director of the CIHR Institute of Population and Public Health, as well as the current Director of the Scottish Collaboration for Public Health Research and Policy, will discuss strategies for effectively championing teamwork between public health researchers and public policy decision makers to equitably improve population health in Scotland.


John W. Frank trained in Medicine and Community Medicine at the University of Toronto, in Family Medicine at McMaster University, and in Epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. He has been Professor (now Emeritus) at the University of Toronto, at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, since 1983; founding Director of Research at the Institute for Work & Health in Toronto from 1991 to 1997; and inaugural Scientific Director of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research - Institute of Population and Public Health (2000-2008). In July 2008, he became Director of a new Edinburgh-based Unit, funded by the Medical Research Council and the Scottish Chief Scientist Office: the Scottish Collaboration for Public Health Research and Policy. He holds a Chair in Public Health Research and Policy at the University of Edinburgh. In 2013 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in recognition of his scholarly contributions.


Patty García is a Professor at the School of Public Health at Cayetano Heredia University (UPCH)  in Lima.  She is the former Minister of Health of Peru, Dean of the School of Public Health at UPCH, and former Chief of the Peruvian National Institute of Health (INS). She is recognized as a leader in global health, and has been a member of the PAHO Foundation Technical Advisory Group (FTAG), board member of the Consortium of Universities in Global Health and President of the Latin American Association Against STIs (ALACITS).  She is an affiliate Professor of the Department of Global Health at the University of Washington and of the School of Public Health at Tulane University.  She is actively involved in research and training on reproductive health, STIs/HIV, global health, HPV and medical informatics.

July 11

From evidence to action: translating research and partnering with governments


Location: Thomson House ballroom, 3650 McTavish St, Montreal

Lunch will be served.

Rigorous evaluation can provide a path for government to develop evidence-informed programs that make a real difference in people's lives. During this workshop, J-PAL North America speakers will discuss the role of research-practice partnerships in advancing the field of evidence-based policymaking. Speakers will discuss the role of knowledge translation in driving policy change, sharing best practices in developing policy publications, synthesizing evidence, and building relationships with decision-makers who are well-positioned to act on evidence. This workshop will also provide practical guidance on how researchers and governments can identify programs of mutual interest to evaluate, develop policy-relevant research questions, and think through study design in light of real-world constraints. The speakers will draw on J-PAL’s partnerships with government ministries to implement deworming programs in Kenya, India, Ethiopia and Vietnam, and homelessness programs at the state and local level in the United States. The workshop will conclude with a practical exercise in translating research.


Anna Spier is a Policy Manager at J-PAL North America. In this role, she helps create new research partnerships and collaborates with policymakers to promote the use of scientific evidence to inform health policy in the US. Prior to joining J-PAL, Anna was a Strategic Advisor at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina where she focused on care delivery reform and fostering provider partnerships. She also worked at Kaiser Permanente in California as a health education consultant. Anna holds a master's in public health from the UNC-Chapel Hill and a BA in history from UC Berkeley.


Vincent Quan is a Policy Manager at J-PAL North America. As a Policy Manager, he leads J-PAL North America's education work, with a particular focus on the impact of technology in education. Prior to joining J-PAL, Vincent worked at the Prison Law Office where he researched conditions in prisons across California and advised corrections staff on strategies to improve conditions of confinement. He has also worked at the Legal Aid Society in New York City, where he assisted low-income residents in navigating the criminal court system. Vincent has also researched and written on local and United States federal housing policy at PolicyLink and the Institute for Children, Poverty, and Homelessness. Vincent holds a Master's in Public Administration from Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs and a B.A. in History from UC Berkeley.

The PROSPERED summer workshops are co-sponsored by the McGill Institute for Health and Social Policy, McGill Faculty of Medicine and the McGill Institute for the Study of International Development.

WORLD logo rectangle large clear.png