IMC Colloquium Series: "Reclamation: Experiments in Homelessness and Crime"

Friday, November 5, 2010
11:30 - 12:30

Dr. Julian Somers
Faculty of Health Sciences, SFU


The most precious and powerful resources of any society are its' peoples. The social exclusion of large numbers of citizens creates unsustainable costs and simultaneously threatens the integrity and security of society. This talk focuses on recent initiatives designed to reduce social exclusion among identified sub-populations: the homeless; drug addicted offenders; and those who commit a high number of crimes in their communities. Current projects in British Columbia highlight innovative experiments in public policy, and incorporate a variety of empirical methods, including randomized controlled trials and population-evel data linkages. These ongoing studies are producing new insights into the characteristics and needs of marginalized members of society. This research is also developing new knowledge concerning the effectiveness of public initiatives that are intended to reduce the human and financial costs associated with social exclusion.

About the Speaker

Dr. Julian Somers is an Associate Professor in SFU's Faculty of Health Sciences. His research focuses on the integration of services and information in order to reduce substance use problems and improve mental health in the population.

Julian (MSc, PhD, RPsych) completed his doctorate under G. Alan Marlatt in the area of addictions, and has collaborated extensively with branches of government on initiatives involving substance use and mental health. He has led Provincial and multi-jurisdictional projects in the areas of telehealth, primary healthcare reform, housing, and the corrections system.

Dr. Somers has held a number of academic and professional leadership positions, including Director of the UBC Psychology Clinic, President of the BC Psychological Association, and Director of the Centre for Applied Research in Mental Health and Addiction.