Jean Hughes


Jean Hughes-035

Related Information:

Phone: 902-494-2456
Fax: 902-494-3487
Mailing Address: 
Room 109, Forrest Bldg.,
Dalhousie University
PO Box 15000
5869 University Avenue
Halifax NS B3H 4R2

Office: D5208 (Dentistry)
Research Topics:
  • Marginalized populations with a focus on mental health


  • BN – Dalhousie University
  • MSc, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Psychiatric Nursing and Community Mental Health – Boston University
  • PhD, Nursing Research - McGill University


Dr.  Hughes is a Professor with the School of Nursing and Senior Researcher with the Healthy Populations Institute at Dalhousie University. She is also a Research Scientist with the Department of Psychiatry at the IWK Health Centre and past Senior Editor (Publications) for the Canadian Journal of Community Mental Health from 2010-2015.

Dr. Hughes’ research and publications concentrate on marginalized populations with a focus on mental health issues and are funded by a number of Federal and Provincial sources. Her research studies have included working with homeless youth (with particular emphasis on homeless mothers) and exploring the trajectory off the street and into stable housing. Several other studies have examined the effects of early psychosis programs – one examining the effects of an art therapy program and another examining the effectiveness of peer support on transitions back to community mental health care. She has also conducted several studies exploring the effects of a proven mental health intervention designed to build social and emotional skills in elementary school children. In addition, she is exploring ways to Optimize Supports and Services for Public School Students from Marginalized Communities. Dr. Hughes’s research is closely linked to her advocacy work: Mental Health Coalition of Nova Scotia – a non-partisan group of concerned individuals and organizations, raises the priority of mental health issues on the government agenda and addresses the chronic under funding of services; Dartmouth North Community Health Planning Team to increase health services in Dartmouth North.


  • Canadian Mental Health Association - National,(2002-07)
  • Canadian Mental Health Association - Provincial (1993-97, 2001-02)
  • CNA - Member-at-Large, Nursing Education (1990-94)
  • Registered Nurses Association of Nova Scotia (1984-86)

Research Interests

  • mental health
  • marginalized populations
  • multiple methods
  • interdisciplinary,
  • community-based and participatory

Awards & Honours

  • 2012- Nova Scotia Health Research Foundation Award for 10 Years of Distinguished Service (2000-2010)
  • 2009- College of Registered Nurses of Nova Scotia, The Centennial Award of Distinction, for the decade 2000-2010.
  • 2003- Canadian Mental Health Association – National, Distinguished Service Award
  • 1997- Canadian Mental Health Association – National, Distinguished Service Award


Among her publications, Dr. Hughes has co-authored two papers that won annual journal awards:

MacWilliams, K., Hughes, J., Aston, M., Field, S., Wight-Moffatt, F. (2016) Understanding the Experience of Miscarriage in the Emergency Department. Journal of Emergency Nursing. online 6 August 2016 – The article was awarded the 2017 Author of the Year Award by the Journal of Emergency Nursing and the Emergency Nurses Association of America.

Quirouette,M., Frederick, T., Hughes, J., Karabanow, J., and Kidd, S. “‘Conflict with the Law’, Regulation & Homeless Youth Trajectories toward Stability”.

Canadian Journal of Law and Society / Revue Canadienne Droit et Société. Vol. 31, Number 3, 2016.” This article won the Canadian Law and Society Association’s prize for the best English-language article published in the Canadian Journal of Law and Society in 2016 (volume 31).


Most recently Dr. Hughes was the invited Keynote Speaker for the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing Annual Conference. Montreal. May, 2018. Hughes, J. Responding to a Changing World: Marginalized Populations.

Students - 50

Dr. Hughes has served as External Examiner to 12 theses (2 PhD, 10 Masters) from diverse disciplines and at different universities. She has been the Supervisor for 3 doctoral students, and 17 Masters students (12 theses, 5 Policy Practicums). In addition, she served as research supervisor for 1 psychiatric medical resident (won first prize for her research). She also served as Committee Member for 3 PhD students (1 PhD Nursing, 2 IDPhD students), and 22 Masters students (6 non-Nursing). All thesis students have had funding.