jspinney


Jennifer Spinney

Photo of Jennifer Spinney

School of Administrative Studies

Assistant Professor

Office: 246 Atkinson Building
Email: jspinney@yorku.ca

Accepting New Graduate Students


Jennifer Spinney (MA & PhD sociocultural anthropology, Western University)

I study the various connections between groups of people living and working at the intersections of environment and society, particularly extreme weather hazards and disasters, such as tornadoes, floods, hurricanes and heat, in both Canada and the United States. I use mostly qualitative research methods, such as interviewing and observations, to understand how people make meaning, assess and communicate risk, how they engage in protective action decision-making, as well as the variability of their social recovery following hazard and disaster experiences.

In my work, I draw heavily on scholarly contributions from the fields of linguistic and sociocultural anthropology, and anthropology of disaster, risk and policy literatures. Past field investigations include: the Joplin, Missouri EF5 tornado, a flood event in the Canadian arctic, and numerous projects working with government agencies to assist with enhancements to their forecast and warning operations, communication practices and product development.

I currently lead 4 research projects (social recovery following the Dunrobin, Ontario tornado disaster (NTP); emergency management preparedness in Ontario during tornado warnings (York MRG); the interpretation and communication of weather hazard confidence (in collaboration with MSC); and the implementation of tornado safety policy in Ontario public schools (SSHRC Insight Development).

For the SSHRC study outlined above, I am currently seeking graduate students, from DEM and/or a social or physical science discipline, who have an interest in qualitative research methods, tornadoes and hazard safety to participate. Funding is available. Please inquire by email to learn more about this opportunity.

More...

Current Courses

Term Course Number Section Title Type
Winter 2022 AP/DEMS3701 3.0 N Disaster Risk Management REMT
Winter 2022 GS/DEMS5030 3.0 M Social & Behavioral Dimensions of Disast LECT



Jennifer Spinney (MA & PhD sociocultural anthropology, Western University)

I study the various connections between groups of people living and working at the intersections of environment and society, particularly extreme weather hazards and disasters, such as tornadoes, floods, hurricanes and heat, in both Canada and the United States. I use mostly qualitative research methods, such as interviewing and observations, to understand how people make meaning, assess and communicate risk, how they engage in protective action decision-making, as well as the variability of their social recovery following hazard and disaster experiences.

In my work, I draw heavily on scholarly contributions from the fields of linguistic and sociocultural anthropology, and anthropology of disaster, risk and policy literatures. Past field investigations include: the Joplin, Missouri EF5 tornado, a flood event in the Canadian arctic, and numerous projects working with government agencies to assist with enhancements to their forecast and warning operations, communication practices and product development.

I currently lead 4 research projects (social recovery following the Dunrobin, Ontario tornado disaster (NTP); emergency management preparedness in Ontario during tornado warnings (York MRG); the interpretation and communication of weather hazard confidence (in collaboration with MSC); and the implementation of tornado safety policy in Ontario public schools (SSHRC Insight Development).

For the SSHRC study outlined above, I am currently seeking graduate students, from DEM and/or a social or physical science discipline, who have an interest in qualitative research methods, tornadoes and hazard safety to participate. Funding is available. Please inquire by email to learn more about this opportunity.


Current Courses

Term Course Number Section Title Type
Winter 2022 AP/DEMS3701 3.0 N Disaster Risk Management REMT
Winter 2022 GS/DEMS5030 3.0 M Social & Behavioral Dimensions of Disast LECT