Nipissing University professors studying the effects of COVID-19 on city
NORTH BAY -- Thanks to more than $40,000 in grant money from the province, 10 studies at Nipissing University are underway looking into the effects of COVID-19 and what a post-pandemic North Bay might look like.
Topics include helping the homeless, working together through physical distancing and exploring the impact on children's health and more.
"The question that started to emerge is, what happens after this?" said Nipissing University VP of Academic and Research Arja Vainio-Mattila. "How are we going to go back to normal? And is that normal going to look like what it was?"
The studies are being conducted by university professors and will look at some of the immediate needs of North Bay and area and how it can recover from COVID-19.
Political science professor David Tabachnick will examine the centralization of power.
"We move the decision making processes to a central authority," said Tabachnick. "In Canada's case, this would be to the federal government away from the provinces. At the provincial level, to the provinces from cities like North Bay."
Tabachnick plans on looking at certain legislation and hopes to speak with North Bay Mayor Al McDonald, MPP Vic Fedeli and MP Anthony Rota.
The university wanted to answer another simple question: do we as a society want things to go back to what we consider normal? Or is this an opportunity to make changes?
"This is a very positive thing that we can do at the university and it draws on our core strengths that relate to the research that our faculty does," said Vainio-Mattila.
The topics range from helping the homeless, working together through physical distancing and exploring the impact on children's health.
Denyse Lafrance Horning will study what business coping strategies will emerge from local merchants having gone through the pandemic.
"We'll be able to identify best practices that can assist them through the remainder of this crisis, but also for future challenges as well," said Lafrance Horning.
The researchers plan on sharing their findings with the community and other groups and agencies when completed.
They are expected to be finished in the coming months.