A professor speaks to a student presenting her poster at MIRA\'s research day poster session. Other students and visitors are standing at poster boards.

September 23, 2019

MIRA awards Mac researchers more than $500,000 for work in mobility and aging

Thirteen McMaster research projects, from every faculty and a wide range of disciplines, have received funding totalling more than $500,000 from the McMaster Institute for Research on Aging (MIRA) and its affiliate Labarge Centre for Mobility in Aging.

MIRA has awarded Labarge Catalyst grants totalling $240,000 to six interdisciplinary research proposals, each with team members from a minimum of three different faculties and the goal of improving mobility for older adults. Principle investigators are

  • Michel Grignon, Faculty of Social Sciences, department of health, aging & society project: How can we improve mobility through alternative transportation modes for seniors? Measuring what works and what does not work in road safety improvements for pedestrians and cyclists
  • Benson Honig, Degroote School of Business, department of human resources management project: Older adults, ageism and entrepreneurship – Learning from failure and success and the interplay of national culture and institutional policies
  • Victor Kuperman, Faculty of Humanities, department of languages and linguistics project: Writing of age – Linguistic markers of cognitive, emotional and social well-being among older adults
  • Ravi Selvaganapathy, Faculty of Engineering, department of mechanical engineering project: Bioprinted 3D in-vitro models to determine mechanisms of cognitive benefits of exercise in the elderly
  • Laurel Trainor, Faculty of Science, department of psychology, neuroscience & behaviour project: Movement sonification for testing mobility in the context of interacting with complex environments
  • Janie Wilson, Faculty of Health Sciences, department of surgery project: A multidisciplinary approach to addressing mobility limitations after orthopaedic joint replacement surgery

MIRA has awarded three interdisciplinary postdoctoral fellows in the field of aging research a total of $195,000 for projects that aim to generate evidence that will contribute to the well-being of older adults. They are

  • Sophie Hogeveens, Faculty of Health Sciences, department of health research methods, Evidence and Impact Project: Promoting optimal aging through equitable access to specialized geriatric services in Ontario
  • Lea Ravensbergen, Faculty of Science, school of geography and earth sciences project: Understanding Older adults’ active travel
  • Tatiane Ribeiro, Faculty of Health Sciences, department of biochemistry and biomedical science project: Accelerating the aging trajectory through prenatal adversity

Mylinh Duong from the department of medicine at the Faculty of Health Sciences is leading a team that will receive $100,000 to develop the first phase of wearable sensing technologies aimed at promoting early mobility in older patients hospitalized. Two Master’s students who are doing work in aging and mobility are receiving a total of $30,000 in Labarge Graduate Scholarships. They are

  • Giulia Coletta, Faculty Science, kinesiology
  • Erynne Rowe, school of biomedical engineering

MIRA and AGE-WELL, a federally funded Centre of Excellence, will co-fund Rasmi Kokash from the Degroote School of Business, human resources management. Kokash will receive $25,000 for his project, which focuses on the extent technological expertise impacts entrepreneurship, economic mobility and wellbeing in older adults. Finally, MIRA is awarding two of its trainees, Ruheena Sangrar from the Faculty of Health Sciences' school of rehabilitation science and Emily Dunford from the Faculty of Science's kinesiology program, a $2,000 grant to plan a forum for other trainees to collaborate, develop and share their research methods.

MIRA’s mandate is to support innovative research approaches that build upon McMaster’s culture of interdisciplinary collaboration, and, where appropriate, to engage older adults and other key stakeholders throughout the conceptualization, evaluation and implementation of interventions and technologies. Funding listed above is supported in part by the Labarge Centre for Mobility in Aging, which was created by a $15-million gift from McMaster’s former Chancellor Suzanne Labarge in 2016.

MIRA’s next funding cycle will launch in early 2020. Visit MIRA’s funding opportunities for more information.