My name is Jessica Penney. I’m a Nunatsiavut Inuk PhD student at the University of Glasgow. I was raised in Iqaluit, Nunavut, but my family is from Rigolet, Nunatsiavut, Labrador and Carbonear, Newfoundland. From an educational viewpoint, I am a graduate of Pearson College UWC, my undergraduate degree is in Sociology and Public Policy, and I also have a Master’s in Global Health (both from the University of Glasgow). Additionally, I have worked at the Government of Nunavut in the Department of Executive and Intergovernmental Affairs in Communications, and in the Department of Health as a Policy Analyst.
My main research interests are related to how global issues (e.g. climate change, energy priorities) and structures (e.g. colonialism, imperialism, globalization) influence Inuit health. Particularly, how development projects such as the Muskrat Falls hydroelectric project in Labrador shape social conceptions of health and wellbeing. I am particularly passionate about using Indigenous research methodologies/methods to investigate Inuit health/social issues, because I believe they provide empowering tools for understanding and improving health outcomes.
My academic interests are shaped by my motivation to help alleviate health inequalities. I stumbled into health related research, finding it to be a way to understand what I saw happening in my community. In this way, the work I do is highly personal. I hope to use my research skills to contribute to positive change, as directed by people in Inuit Nunangat.
In my spare time, I love knitting, working with sealskin, and volunteering. I am interested in networking with/mentoring other Indigenous students, so feel free to get in touch.
This is a radio interview of me speaking with CBC Labrador Morning about health and wellbeing considerations for the Muskrat Falls project.
My publications include:
Penney, Jessica and Johnson-Castle, Patricia. (2020). “COVID-19 And Inuit Nunangat: Research, Responsibility & Infrastructure Inequality.” Yellowhead Institute, 31 March 2020. https://yellowheadinstitute.org/2020/03/31/covid-19-and-inuit-nunangat-research-responsibility-infrastructure-inequality/.
Penney, Jessica. (2018). “An Indigenous Research Methods-guided MSc dissertation project in Labrador, Canada: Understanding Changing Conceptions of Health using MAXQDA.” 17 October. MAXQDA: The Art of Data Analysis. https://www.maxqda.com/indigenous-research-methods-and-maxqda.
Penney, Jessica. (2019). “The safety that was, is gone”: Muskrat Falls and Labrador Land Protectors’ Changing Health and Wellbeing.” Report funded by MAXQDA Research for Change Grant. https://womeninthearctic.files.wordpress.com/2019/05/89dc1-muskratfalls_health_jpenney_feb2019.pdf