Dr. Haorui Wu PhD

Canada Research Chair in Resilience and Assistant Professor

Wu, Haorui_lg

Email: haorui.wu@dal.ca
Phone: 902-494-1188
Fax: 902-494-6709
Mailing Address: 
School of Social Work Dalhousie University Suite 3250, Mona Campbell Building, 1459 LeMarchant Street PO Box 15000 Halifax, Nova Scotia B3H 4R2
Research Topics:
  • Environmental justice and social justice
  • Climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction
  • Public interest design
  • Mixed-method research
  • Disaster mental health
  • One welfare and human-animal bond
  • Adaptive social protection
  • Settlement service
  • Social network analysis
  • GIS


  • Postdoc University of Colorado Boulder
  • Postdoc University of Calgary
  • Ph.D. University of British Columbia
  • M. Arch., Sichuan University
  • B. Arch., Sichuan University


Dr. Haorui Wu is the Canada Research Chair in Resilience and Assistant Professor at the School of Social Work. With an interdisciplinary With an interdisciplinary background (architecture, landscape architecture, regional and community planning, and social work), Dr. Wu’s community-based interdisciplinary research and emerging practice have nuancedly explored disaster-driven redevelopment of human and non-human settlements through the lens of environmental justice and social justice in the global context of climate change, disaster, and willful acts of violence. His innovative socio-ecological protection strategies aim to stimulate the transdisciplinary application of engineering, social, cultural, ecological, economic, and political dimensions into the empowerment of grassroots-led community development initiatives that contribute to the enhancement of inhabitants and co-inhabitants’ health and well-being, advancing resilience and sustainability at individual, family, and community levels, and promoting equality, diversity, and inclusion in community development.

Dr. Wu has been serving as principal/co-investigator and/or collaborator on 18 multi-investigator nationally and internationally funded research projects regarding community development in disaster settings. He has held more than $1.3 million in research funding, as the principal investigator, and over $5 million in research funding, as the co-investigator and collaborator. He regularly collaborates with interdisciplinary teams of scholars across 18 countries worldwide and employ numerous students as research assistants.

Current Research Projects:

[Principal investigator] “Building a Culture of Community Resilience: Establishing a Social Research Infrastructure for Hazards and Disaster Studies” (Canada Research Chair Program, $600,000, 2021-2026)

[Principal investigator] “Virtual Programs and Virtual Community Development: A Social Work Researcher-Practitioner Partnership to Evaluate the Community-based Virtual Settlement Service Programs” (SSHRC Partnership Engage Grants, $24,998, 2020-2021)

[Principal investigator] “COVID-19 and Human-Animal Bonds: A Researcher-Practitioner Partnership Committed to Ensuring Animal Welfare, Enhancing Human Well-Being, and Building Human-Animal Resilience” (SSHRC Partnership Engage Grants, $24,991, 2020-2021)

[Principal investigator] “A Dual Gendered Leadership Model: Gender-Inclusive Science-Political Communication Supports Government COVID-19 Responses in Atlantic Canada” (Faculty of Health, Research Development Grant, $5,000, 2021-2022)

[Co-Principal investigator] “Enhancing Our Healthcare Heroes’ Overall Well-Being: Balancing Patient Health, Personal Risk, and Family Responsibilities During the COVID-19 Pandemic” (NSF Quick Response Grant, US$3,000, 2020-2021)

[Co-Principal investigator] “Exploring the Experiences of University Students Evicted from Their On-Campus Housing During the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Cross-National Comparison” (NSF Quick Response Grant, US$3,000, 2020-2021)

[Co-Principal investigator] “Evaluation Consulting Services: Building State Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters Capacities to Protect Children in Emergencies” (Save the Children, U.S. Programs, US$170,000, 2018-2020)

[Co-Principal investigator] “Homelessness as Disaster and Homelessness in Disasters: Exploring Vulnerability in Crisis States” (Faculty of Health, Research Development Grant, $4,968, 2020-2021)

[Co-investigator] “Health Impacts and Responses of COVID-19 for Homeless Populations in Halifax, Nova Scotia” (SSHRC Partnership Engage Grants, $24,674, 2020-2021)

[Co-investigator] “Interdisciplinary Study of Evacuating Persons with Disabilities from an Urban Center” (Accessibility Standards Canada grants and contributions program, 2020-2023)

[Collaborator] “Transforming the Field Education Landscape: Intersections of Research and Practice in Canadian Social Work Field Education” (SSHRC Partnership Grants, $1,980,640, 2019-2024)

Selected Publications (in the past five years):

Wu, H., Perez-Lugo, M., García, C. O., Gonzalez, F., & Castillo, A. (2021, in press). Empowered stakeholders: university female students’ leadership during the COVID-19-triggered on-campus evictions in Canada and the United States. International Journal of Disaster Risk Science. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13753-021-00362-6

Wu, H. (2021, in press). Integration of the Disaster Component into Social Work Curriculum: Teaching Undergraduate Social Work Research Methods Course During COVID-19. The British Journal of Social Work. https://doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcab110

Wu, H. (2021, in press). Bottom-up adaptive social protection: A case study of grassroots self-reconstruction efforts in post-Wenchuan earthquake rural reconstruction and recovery. International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters.

Wu, H. (2021, in press). “Reign behind a curtain”: Women’s indirect and informal leadership in the post-earthquake reconstruction and recovery in rural areas, Sichuan, China. In J. Kusma (Ed.), Disaster and emergency management: Case studies in adaptation and innovation. Elsevier.

Wu, H. (2021). Resilience in post-disaster reconstruction of human settlement: An architectural perspective. In M. Ungar (Ed.), Systemic Resilience: Adaptation and Transformation in Contexts of Change (pp. 646-660). Oxford University Press.

Wu, H., & Etienne, F. (2021). Effect of climate change on food production (animal products). In T. M. Letcher (Ed.), A Comprehensive Study of Physical, Social, and Political issues. Elsevier. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-822373-4.00019-7

Wu, H. (2020). Airdropped urban condominiums and stay-behind elders’ overall well-being: 10-year lessons learned from the post-Wenchuan earthquake rural recovery. Journal of Rural Studies, 79, 24-33.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jrurstud.2020.08.008 

Wu, H., & Karabanow, J. (2020). COVID-19 and beyond: Social work interventions for supporting homeless population. International Social Work, 63(6), 790-794. https://doi.org/10.1177/0020872820949625

Stukes, P., & Wu, H. (2020). Improving data process for Indigenous peoples in the U.S. and Canada: A public-media-based cross-national comparison. Journal of Indigenous Social Development, 9(3), 53-66. https://journalhosting.ucalgary.ca/index.php/jisd/article/view/71013/54410

Hou, C., & Wu, H. (2020). Rescuer, decision maker, and breadwinner: Women’s predominant leadership across the post-Wenchuan earthquake efforts in rural areas, Sichuan, China. Safety Science, 125, 1-6. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ssci.2020.104623

Peek, L., Champeau, H., Austin, J., Mathews, M., & Wu, H. (2020). What methods do social scientists use to study disasters? An analysis of the social science extreme events research network. American Behavioral Scientist, 64(8), 1066-1094. https://doi.org/10.1177/0002764220938105

Peek, L., Tobin, J., Adams, R., Wu, H., & Mathew, M. (2020). A framework for convergence research in the hazards and disaster field: The natural hazards engineering research infrastructure CONVERGE facility. Frontiers in Built Environment, 6, 110. https://doi.org/10.3389/fbuil.2020.00110

Wu, H., & Hou, C. (2019). Utilizing co-design approach to identify various stakeholders’ roles in the protection of intangible place-making heritage: The case of Guchengping Village. Disaster Prevention and Management: An International Journal, 29(1), 22-35. https://doi.org/0.1108/DPM-09-2018-0291

Wu, H. (2019). Post-disaster reconstruction in China: The need for harmonization of physical reconstruction and social recovery after the Wenchuan earthquake. In J. Drolet (Ed.), Rebuilding lives post-disaster (pp. 204-225). Oxford University Press.

Wu, H., & Drolet, J. (2019). Methodology. In J. Drolet (Ed.), Rebuilding lives post-disaster (pp. 37-50). Oxford University Press.

Samuel, M., Drolet, J., &. Wu, H. (2019). Post-Tsunami Recovery in South India: Including the Excluded. In J. Drolet (Ed.), Rebuilding lives post-disaster (pp. 130-147). Oxford University Press.

Wu, H. (2019). Advancing post-disaster resilience: Improving designer-user communication in the post-Lushan earthquake reconstruction and recovery. In B. Kar & D. Cochran (Eds.), Understanding the roles of risk communication in community resilience building (pp. 198-210). Routledge.

Drolet, J., Wu, H., Ering, R., Mathbor, G, Alston, M., Hargreaves, D., Huang, Y., & Huang, C. (2018). Rebuilding lives post-disaster: Innovative community practices for sustainable development. In L. Dominelli, H. B. Ku, & B. R. Nikku (Eds.), Handbook of Green Social Work (pp.63-73). Routledge.

Drolet, J., & Wu, H. (2017). Building inclusive and welcoming community for immigrants and refugees. In M. C. Yan & U. Anucha (Eds.), Working with immigrants and refugees: A handbook for social work and human services. Oxford University Press. 

Wu, H., & Hou, C. (2016). Community social planning: The social worker’s role in post-earthquake reconstruction and recovery planning, Sichuan China. Social Dialogue, 4, 26-29.

Wu, H., & Drolet, J. (2016). Adaptive social protection: Climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction. In J. Drolet (Ed.), Social development and social work perspectives on social protection (pp. 96-119). Routledge. 

Drolet, J., Wu, H., & Dennehy, A. L. (2016). Social development and sustainability: Social work in the post-2015 sustainable development framework. In J. McKinnon & M. Alston (Eds.), Ecological social work: Towards sustainability (pp. 39-56). Palgrave. 

Drolet, J., Alston, M., Dominelli, L., Ersing, R., Mathbor, G., & Wu, H. (2015). Women rebuilding lives post-disaster: Innovative community practices for building resilience and promoting sustainable development. Gender & Development, 23(3), 433-448. https://doi.org/10.1080/13552074.2015.1096040

Drolet, J., Wu, H., Taylor, M., & Dennehy, A. (2015). Social work and sustainable social development: Teaching and learning strategies for ‘green social work’ curriculum. Social Work Education: The International Journal, 34(5), 528-543. https://doi.org/10.1080/02615479.2015.1065808