A unique opportunity presented itself with the announcement of this one-time only, joint grant competition by the SSHRC and CIHR on the Healthy and Productive Workplace. It is a partnership grant that brought together the partners with whom we have been working with for the past 18 months. This is a two-phase grant: Phase 1 is to create the partnership, do some pilot work, and consider how to scale up the project. This phase is for two years at 75K per year (we were awarded the full amount). The “carrot” is the second phase of the grant. Only those who have been awarded a Phase 1 grant are eligible to apply for Phase 2. Phase 2 is to scale up the project. Phase 2 is a 5-year grant and will be awarded 2.5 Million dollars. Partnerships have been given and of the 20 partnerships, eight will be given for Phase 2.

Grant Progress Sept 2016-Sept 2017

 Phase 1 Partnership Development Grant

Project director Gretchen Keller was hired in July 2016 , who has a Masters in Nursing from McGill University, has been an invaluable asset to the team.  The first meeting of all the partners and collaborators that took place on Aug 31st & Sept 1st in Toronto. in which the process of developing specific protocols and timetables for each of the grants components was begun. The first task was to prepare  an initial set of protocols  to be presented to the McGill  University ethics  committee, which were subsequently approved  in May 2017.. On Sept 6 2017  a modified protocol was approved by the REB of Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, which is the  site of the pilot story sharing component.. The methodology and subsequent protocols for the story sharing component were part of the work that was accomplished at the second full partnership meeting which took place in Montreal from  May 24th  to May 25th,

The initial story-sharing videography is now slated to begin at Holland-Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital on Sept 11th 2017, under the direction of Kitra Cahana, our visual anthropologist,  Dr. Marilyn Ballantyne, the Director of Nursing  at Holland-Bloorview has been instrumental in arranging all of the complex components of this very innovative and exciting method for capturing the relationships between,point-of-care nurses, their patients and their families and their clinical supervisors.

​Phase 2 Full Partnership Grant 2018-2023


 We have prepared an article titled: “Strengths-Based Nursing Reconceiving Nursing To Meet The Challenges Of A Transforming Health Care System”. The article is co-authored with Dr. Norman Doidge, who is a well-known neuro-psychiatrist and one of the founders of neuroplasticity. Dr. Doidge strongly believes in the concepts and philosophy of SBN.  It is hoped that by publishing such an article in a prominent medical journal SBN will be not only introduced to the wider medical community and physicians in particular, but help get the physician buy-in, which is essential if SBN is to take hold.


1. Oxford Health Experience Institute, Oxford University (OHEI)

OHEXI is the leading pioneer in patient experiences. They have over 1000 interviews of people describing their health experiences. Anyone can access and use their website ( As a part of her sabbatical project, Dr. Laurie Gottlieb was invited to be an affiliated with the Institute. Dr. Louise Locock, her sponsor, has been very generous with her time and been a terrific resource. In light of our grant, Laurie has been exploring how they are using these interviews to change practice.

 2. Symposium on Realist Evaluation.

Drs. Laurie and Bruce Gottlieb attended a symposium on realist evaluation (RE), organized by the Department of Primary Care at Oxford University. The symposium was led by Dr. Justin Jagosh, a fellow Canadian who heads the Center of Realist Evaluation at the University of Liverpool. RE is a method to evaluate programs.  It not only asks whether a program worked but also how did it work and why did it work.

We then met with Dr. Sam Porter, head of Nursing at Queens University in Belfast, who written a  critique of RE’s underlying foundations, and some problems in trying to use RE in analyzing the effectiveness of a nursing program. He very kindly agreed to serve as a resource person if we do decide to use RE.



 Strengths-Based Nursing has now been adopted as the underlying principle of nursing practice in a number of nursing departments  in several . countries. .These include:

The ingram School of Nursing, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec,Canada

The Department of Nursing, Memorial University, St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada 

 Department of Nursing, University of Tasmania, Hobart, Tasmania, Australia.

Department of Nursing, University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada

Department of Nursing, Fanshawe College, London, Ontario, Canada

Department of Nursing, Mount Royal University, Calgary, Alberta, Canada

​Department of Nursing, Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne Australia


Strengths-Based Nursing has now been adopted as the underlying principle of nursing practice in a number of healthcare Institutions. .These include:

CIUSS of Saguenay-Lac St-Jean, Quebec, Canada




13th Bi-annual International Family Nursing Conference (June 14-17)

​Dr. Laurie Gottlieb presented a paper titled " Transforming Nurses' Work-Life Environments through Training Clinical Leaders and  Managers Using Innovative

Forms of Story-Sharing."

A second paper was presented titled 

"Developing a Community of Practice of advanced Practice oncology nurses Committed to Strengths-Based nursing"  authored by oncology nurses, Nancy Drummond1, Renata Benc1, Louise Champagne1, Gabrielle Chartier1, Andrea Cooke1, Antoinette Ehrler1, Kim Gartshore1, Christina McDonald1, and Dr. Laurie Gottlieb 

Dr. Laurie Gottlieb also met with Dr. Claudia Oliveira a professor of nursing at the University of  Minho, Braga, Portugal, Dr. Oliveira played an instrumental role in translating Strengths-Based Nursing Care in Portuguese.and uses SBN as the philosophical underpinnings of her research.

Work-Shop given in London, England (July 6)

Dr. Laurie Gottlieb participated together with Dr. Kristin Heggal of Lovisenberg Diaconal University College, Norway in a work-shop titled

"Sharing conceptual frameworks and research - Results on Strength-Based nursing and person-focused care"

3. Advanced Communication Skill Training

Drs. Laurie and Bruce Gottlieb flew to Northern Ireland to learn more about a program in  Advanced Communication Skill Training (ACST) that Laurie learned about at the Commonwealth Conference. We are thinking that we might include such a module in the grant training program. Anne’s husband is the Director of Nursing of one of Northern Ireland’s major healthcare trusts..

​4. Practice Development in Nursing

Drs. Laurie and Bruce Gottlieb travelled to Edinburgh, Scotland  to meet with Professors Brendan McCormack and Jan Dewing, at Queen Margaret University in Edinburgh, Scotland. Professors McCormack and Dewing are experts in practice development in nursing and we discussed how we might use some of their approaches in implementing SBN in health care.

5. Experience-Based Co-Design.

 Drs. Laurie and Bruce Gottlieb met with  Professors Glen Robert and Jill Maben of Kings College, London. They are experts in the concept of experience-based co-design, which we intend to use as the basis for designing our project.