Carol Kauppi is director of Laurentian University’s Centre for Research in Social Justice and Policy, and a professor at the university’s School of Social Work. Her interdisciplinary work into the social issues facing many northeastern Ontario residents has helped build capacity in the region.
Kauppi is the lead researcher on the SSHRC-funded Community-Based Responses to Poverty, Homelessness and Migration in Northern Communities project. Her research focuses on the three main cultural groups in Northern Ontario—Indigenous peoples, Francophones and Anglophones.
Working with residents from communities that are often sparsely populated and remote, Kauppi has been able to identify variations in how different cultural groups experience issues such as homelessness.
Kauppi’s community-based approach has led to the creation of a culturally sensitive database that is informing policy-makers and community workers alike. The government of Ontario has used her findings as a springboard to more effective monitoring of issues in remote communities.
Kauppi has had numerous papers published describing the economic, political and social structures that limit the choices available to northern communities dealing with social challenges, and analyzing how to find solutions to these problems.