PhD, RN, PHN
Dr. Elizabeth Saewyc’s research focuses on health issues of youth, particularly how stigma, violence, and trauma influence teens’ health, coping and risk behaviours, and what protective factors in relationships and environments can buffer this trauma for young people. For the past 19 years, she has conducted research with many different groups of vulnerable adolescents, including runaway and street-involved youth, sexually abused and sexually exploited teens, gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender adolescents, youth in custody, immigrants, home-stay students, and refugees, and indigenous youth in several countries. She draws on a variety of research methods, including population-based surveys, ethnography, photo-elicitation and video diaries, randomized trials and quasi-experimental intervention studies, participatory epidemiology, critical discourse analysis, and methods approaches. Much of her research incorporates gender and sex-based analyses, especially around health issues for boys and young men that are commonly considered “female” issues, such as teen pregnancy involvement, sexual abuse and exploitation, and relationship violence. In addition to sexual health issues, her research focuses on mental health issues such as self-harm and suicide attempts, grief and coping, and substance use/abuse.