I get to live in Campbell River on Vancouver Island on the West Coast of Canada. My days are full of fresh and salty air, spectacular views of forests and mountains, the Salish Sea, and Discovery Passage, opportunities for healthy connections with my friends and colleagues, and an abundance of leisure choices. I am so grateful for the life I get to live, and I have chosen a profession that enables me to enhance and promote quality of life right where I live. My job as a Sociable Scientist is to research and communicate the role and impact of leisure on social sustainability.
I get to ask questions about how and why people spend their resources (time, money, energy) on leisure, recreation, and tourism. I get to explore the reasons visitors choose Vancouver Island as their holiday destination, and I get to work with community and regional destination marketing organizations to better understand the visitor experience and overall community destination development. I work with public recreation agencies to learn more about how our local residents are actively (or not) engaging in the accessible, affordable recreation services, products, and experiences provided by our municipal and regional governments.
With a lens of leisure and sustainability, I get to apply innovative research methods to challenging, simple, and complex community issues that directly impact me as a resident of Campbell River and Vancouver Island. I am also a tourist to my neighbouring communities on Vancouver Island the Sunshine Coast, so I truly care about how, when, where, why, and what is happening in terms of community and destination development here.
As a researcher and facilitator, I very much appreciate the willingness of people to answer questions on an online survey, participate in a focus group, join a community conversation, provide in-person feedback, show up to an information session or workshop, and/or simply be counted. The more we can all actively participate in the communities we live in and visit, the more we can contribute to healthy, connected, and socially sustainable places.