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] “Promoting Healthy, Resilient, and Sustainable Individual, Family, and Community Development: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Human-Animal Interactions” (SSHRC Knowledge Synthesis Grants, $29,999, 2022-2023).

[Principal investigator] “ ‘Make a Disaster Plan for Your Pets’: Developing an Animal-Specific Disaster and Emergency Management Plan in Atlantic Canada” (SSHRC Partnership Engage Grants, $25,000, 2022-2023).

[Principal Investigator] “Essential but Unexpected, Under-Protected, and Undervalued COVID-19 Heroes: Individual-Work-Family Triangulation of Frontline Retail Workers” (SSHRC Insight Development Grants, $74,979, 2021-2023).

[Principal Investigator] “International Social Work Connections to Enhance Older Adults post-COVID-19 recovery” (Vice-Present Research & Innovation International Seed Fund, Dalhousie University, $5,000, 2022-2023).

[Principal Investigator] “Engaging Animal in Emergency Preparedness: A Community Asset Mapping Approach” (Faculty of Health Research Development Grants, Dalhousie University, $5,000, 2022-2023).

[Principal Investigator] “A Baseline Survey: Risk Perception, Protective Behaviors, And Emotional Well-Being Associated with Media Coverage of Hurricane” (SSHRC Explore Grants, CA$5,000, 2021-2022).

[Principal Investigator] “To Rescue Animals or To Leave Them: Emotional Plight of Farm Animal Owners Facing Fraser Valley Flooding Evacuation” (the Quick Response Program, the Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction, $5,000, 2021-2022).

[Co-Principal Investigator] “Supply Chain Disruption and Community Resilience to Natural Hazards: Lesson Learned from British Columbia's Fraser Valley Flooding” (the Quick Response Program, the Institute for Catastrophic Loss Reduction, $5,000, 2021-2022).

[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 Peer-Reviewed Publications (in the past six years):

Wu, H. (2022). Mass email risk communication: Lessons learned from the COVID-19-triggered campus-wide eviction in Canada and the United States. PLOS ONE. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0266242

Doll, K., Karabanow, J., Huges, J., & Leviten-Reid, C., & Wu, H. (2022). Homelessness within the pandemic in Two Nova Scotian Communities. International Journal on Homelessness, 2(1), 6-22. https://doi.org/10.5206/ijoh.2022.1.14227

Wu, H., Peek, L., Mathews, M., & Mattson, N. (2022). Cultural competence for hazards and disaster researchers: A framework and training module. Natural Hazards Review, 23(1). 06021005. https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)NH.1527-6996.0000536

Slick, J., & Wu, H. (2022, in press). The need to protect the most vulnerable: The COVID-19 crisis in long-term and residential care in Canada. In M.-L. Rhodes, & L. Comfort (Eds.), Countries in crisis: Collective cognition action and COVID-19. Routledge.

Wu, H. (2022, 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. (2022, in press). Bottom-up adaptive social protection: Grassroots self-reconstruction efforts post-Wenchuan earthquake. United Nations Global Assessment Report on Disaster Risk Reduction (GAR) 2022.

Karabanow, J., Bozcam, E. S., Huges, J., & Wu, H. (2021). Lessons learned: COVID-19 and individuals experiencing homelessness in global context. International Journal on Homelessness, 2(1), 160-174. https://doi.org/10.5206/ijoh.2022.1.13798

Wu, H., & Mackenzie, J. (2021). Dual-gendered leadership: Gender-inclusive scientific-political public health communication supporting government COVID-19 responses in Atlantic Canada. Healthcare, 9(10), 1345. https://doi.org/10.3390/healthcare9101345

Wu, H., Bains, R., Morris, A., & Morales, C. (2021). Affordability, feasibility, and accessibility: Companion animal guardians with (dis)abilities’ access to veterinary medical and behavioral services during COVID-19. Animals, 11(8), 2359. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani11082359

Wu, H. (2021). When housing and communities were delivered: A case study of post-Wenchuan earthquake rural reconstruction and recovery. Sustainability, 13(14), 7629. https://doi.org/10.3390/su13147629

Wu, H. (2021). 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, 39(1), 65-86. http://www.ijmed.org/articles/803/

Morris, A., Wu, H., & Morales, C. (2021). Barriers to care in veterinary services: Lessons learned from low-income pet guardians’ experiences at private clinics and hospitals during COVID-19. Frontiers in Veterinary Science, 8, 764753. https://doi.org/10.3389/fvets.2021.764753

Wu, H., Perez-Lugo, M., García, C. O., Gonzalez, F., & Castillo, A. (2021). 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, 12(4), 581-592. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13753-021-00362-6

Wu, H. (2021). 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, 51(5), 1799-1819. https://doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcab110

Wu, H., & Bryan, C. (2021). Mobile livelihoods and adaptive social protection: Precarious migrant workers fostering resilience to climate change. In I. Adjibade & A.R. Siders (Eds.), Global views on climate relocation and social justice: Navigating retreat (pp. 180-193). Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781003141457-14

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://www.emerald.com/insight/content/doi/10.1108/DPM-09-2018-0291/full/html

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.