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Home    Research    Grants & Awards    Grant Winners

Grant Winners

    Tara KajaksCIRPD proudly supports its grant winners and their contributions to chronic pain and disability prevention research. CIRPD congratulates its most recent grant award winner, Tara Kajaks, who won the Doctoral Research Award in Motor Vehicle Disability Prevention. Ms Kajaks' research focuses on improving ergonomic assessments using virtual reality and digital human modeling. Her valuable research will help reduce automotive workplace injuries.

    Past winners have conducted research on a wide variety of chronic pain related topics, ranging from using genetics to predict brain injury to optimizing car seat properties to prevent injury.

    Here are a few of CIRPD's award winner's most recent research publications:

    • Effectiveness of lumbar support in maintaining the lumbar lordosis in sitting: A radiographic  comparison of initial and long-term effects on lumbar spine and pelvic posture during simulated prolonged driving
    • Functional Capacity Evaluations: Its Role in Predicting Successful Return to Work Following Back Injury
    • Practice of Physiotherapists in the Treatment of Workers with Subacute Low Back Pain
    • Injury Potential for Children in Vehicle Crash with Three and Five Point Child Restraint Systems. Awarded
    • A population based examination of the influence of social networks on children risk of injury in vehicles using artificial intelligence computational models
    • A virtual simulation of factors influencing older adults’ line of sight during automobile driving

    Here are a few updates from past winners:

     Douglas Gross Douglas Gross PhD is an assistant professor in the Department of Physical Therapy at the University of Alberta. His research focuses on injured workers with musculoskeletal conditions, including investigating the role of functional testing and public education campaigns. He is very grateful for the fellowship award he received from CIRPD. Dr. Gross completed his PhD in 2003, resulting in 3 peer-reviews journal publications and 4 conference presentations. “It was instrumental in the completion of my PhD thesis research and helped open the door for my career as an academic.”
     Brenda Vrkljan Brenda Vrjklan PhD is an Assistant Professor, with the School of Rehabilitation Science Occupational Therapy Program at McMaster University. Dr. Vrkljan completed her PhD in November, 2006 when she was a doctoral student at the University of Western Ontario. She continues to be involved in a number of research projects related to older drivers. She is co-leading a project on the development of vehicle design rating system for older drivers including Canadian Driving Research Initiative for Vehicular Safety in the Elderly (CanDRIVE) an interdisciplinary research initiative funded by a CIHR- team grant.

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