I received my PhD in Sociology from the University of Toronto, and an MA in Criminology from the University of Ottawa. Before joining the Community Psychology program at Wilfrid Laurier University, I held Scientist positions at the Toronto Central Community Care Access Centre and the Centre for Research on Inner City Health at St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto, and status faculty appointments in the Institute for Health Policy, Management and Evaluation and the Dalla Lana School of Public Health at the University of Toronto.
I conduct solutions-focused research with the goal of generating evidence with which to improve health and increase accessibility of community-based healthcare and social services for marginalized populations. I have conducted evaluations of complex health interventions such as Housing First programs for individuals experiencing homelessness and mental illness (At Home/Chez Soi randomized controlled trial – Toronto site), mental health services including mobile crisis intervention teams, and tobacco control programming.
Some of my current projects include:
Churchill, E., Shankardass, K., Perrella, A.M., Lofters, A., et al., Kirst, M.J. (2021). Changing the narrative: Effective messages to the public on social determinants of health inequities. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.
Duncan, A., Dainty, K., Wodchis, W., Kirst, M.J., & Stergiopoulos, V. (2021). Short Term Case Management – A Principles-Focused Evaluation of a Community Mental Health Intervention. Evaluation & Program Planning.
Kirst, M.J., Friesdorf, R., Amiri, A., Ta, M., Stergiopoulos, V., Hwang, S.W., O’Campo, P. (2020). Patterns and effects of social integration on housing stability, mental health and substance use outcomes among participants in a randomized controlled Housing First trial, Social Science & Medicine, 265.
Caplan, R., Nelson, G., Piat, M., Macnaughton, E., Isaak, C., Patterson, M., Kirst, M.J. et al. (2020). Indigenous and Non-Indigenous Parents with Mental Illness Separated from their Children and Experiencing Homelessness in Canada, Journal of Community Psychology.
Kirst, M.J., Chaiton, M., & O’Campo, P. (2019). Tobacco outlet density, neighbourhood stressors and smoking prevalence in Toronto, Canada. Health & Place. 58.
Chum, A., O'Campo, P., Lachaud, J., Fink, N., Kirst, M.J., & Nisenbaum, R. (2019). Evaluating the potential for same-source bias in neighbourhood effects on depression: a cross-sectional study of 2,411 adults in Toronto, Canada. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology (online).
Embuldeniya, G., Kirst, M.J., Walker, K., Wodchis, W. (2018). The generation of integration: The early experience of implementing bundled care in Ontario, Canada. Milbank Quarterly. 1-32.
Urbanoski, K., Veldhuizen, S., Krausz, M., Schutz, C., Somers, J., Kirst, M.J., Fleury, M.J., Stergiopoulos, V., Patterson, M., Strehlau, V., Goering, P. (2018). Effects of comorbid substance use disorders on outcomes in a Housing First intervention for homeless people with mental illness. Addiction, 113(1), 137-145.