The Team

[From Left to Right: Jun Zhang, Paula Struk Jaia, Jane Zhu, Md Arifur Rahman, Tony Fang, Tiffany Gale, Sumaiya Akter, Evan McCarthy, Shichuan Zhong]


About Us


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Dr. Halina Sapeha

Dr. Sapeha is a Public Engagement Postdoctoral Fellow at Memorial University of Newfoundland. She earned her Ph.D. in Comparative Public Policy from McMaster University. Her research interests include labour migration, integration of immigrants, and efficacy and effectiveness of public policies. She previously held posts in international agencies and think tanks in Europe and worked on surveys in Canada and abroad for COMPAS Research.


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Dr. David Brake

Dr. Brake is a researcher, educator, internet consultant, and journalist. His broad research interests include digital divides and digital media literacy, mediated interpersonal interaction, the political economy of the social web and other internet applications, online journalism (in particular journalists and user-generated content), and the interconnections between new media, the mass media, and politics. His Ph.D. thesis (London School of Economics) was on personal webloggers and their relationship with their audiences.


Dr. Tingting Zhang

She is an Assistant Professor of Organization Studies and Analytics at Girard School of Management, Merrimack College in North Andover, Massachusetts, USA. Her research interest focuses on how various training and development mechanisms, such as occupational licensing, certificates, apprenticeship, and other non-degree occupational credentials, affect employees’ labor market performances and career outcomes. She earned a Doctorate in Industrial Relations and Human Resources and a Master in Economics from the University of Toronto. She published in journals such as the British Journal of Industrial Relations, International Migration Review, Education Finance and Policy, International Journal of Training and Development, and Canadian Public Policy.


Dr. Zhen (Jane) Zhu

Dr. Zhu is an Associate Professor in the Department of Economics and Management at Sichuan College of Architectural Technology. Her research interests include human capital investment efficiency, the development of the Human Resources service industry in Sichuan, China, and linkages between workforce diversity and workplace productivity. With over 20 years of working experience in human resources and human capital research, Jane has developed a broad range of technical expertise in data collection, processing, and analysis from existing research, survey, interview, and other sources.


Dr. Sherine Khattab

Dr. Khattab is currently a research fellow and a sessional instructor in the Department of Economics at Memorial University of Newfoundland. She earned her interdisciplinary Ph.D. in the three distinct areas of Economics, Political Science, and Geography from Memorial University of Newfoundland. Dr. Khattab’s research investigates the gender wage gap and its relationship to geographic mobility. Her research findings addressed economics concerns and recommended new policies and government programs to alleviate the current wage gap in Newfoundland and Labrador. Dr. Khattab’s research interests include labour market mobility, gender wage gap, place attachment, immigrants’ integration in the workplace, workforce diversity, and labour market policies.


Dr. Elahe Nezhadossein

Dr. Nezhadossein recently obtained her Ph.D. in Sociology at Memorial University, following studies at the University of Tehran (Bachelor of Political Science 2007; Masters of Political Sciences 2010) and at New Mexico State University (Masters of Sociology 2014. Minor: Women Studies). During her Ph.D. studies, she had the opportunity to work with the Association for New Canadians on topics related to immigrants and refugees, culture, and media. Elahe has taught courses at university level, including Introduction to Sociology, and has guest lectured on topics related to culture, technology, and media.


Dr. Na Xiao

Dr. Xiao is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Management at Laurentian University. She has graduated from Queen’s University in Canada, and Tsinghua University in China. Her research interests are immigrants’ identity, workforce, innovation, goals, product evaluations, gifting, etc. She has expertise in both quantitative and qualitative methodology.


Ruby (Ruishan) Zhang

Ruby (Ruishan) Zhang completed her Bachelor's degree in Economics, Mathematics, and Statistics at the University of Chicago. Her interests are infirm behavior, labor market outcomes, and innovation. She has previously worked at the Center for the Economics of Human Development where she analyzed the long-term health outcomes of early childhood care programs. She is currently working at Harvard University where she analyzes the determinants of socioeconomic inequality. She will be starting her economics Ph.D. in the fall.


Kerri Claire Neil

Kerri has a B.A. (Hons.) in Economics from Memorial University and is completing her M.A. in Sociology at Memorial. Kerri Claire has worked with Dr. Fangs on several projects researching immigration and municipal service delivery in the province, with a focus on policy development, and has several publications, including the Democracy Cookbook.


Gunnar K. A. Njalsson

Gunnar is an Estonian economist and administrative scientist specializing in the administration of technologies in the public sector and national innovation programs. He is also a specialist in outer space law. He completed his master’s degree with honors at the University of Helsinki (one of the top 100 world universities) in two and a half years and completed the doctoral course program (all but dissertation) at the University of Helsinki with the highest honors. He received competitive funding from Finnish and Swedish scholarly foundations and researched with funding from the Academy of Finland at the Institute of Air and Space Law of the University of Lapland, Finland. His teaching experience and competence range from 5th-grade mathematics to public administration and economics at the university level. Gunnar is currently involved in research focused on digital nomadism and private entrepreneurship as well as digital citizenship, cyberespionage, and information warfare. He is the author of the popular resource "Gunnar's Basic Internet Security Guide". Gunnar is fluent in Swedish, Estonian, English, Finnish, Spanish and Norwegian.


Christopher Mick Stevens

Mick Stevens is an M.A. candidate at Memorial University of Newfoundland, whose areas of focus include histories of imperialism and colonialism, Newfoundland history, and Newfoundland's Indigenous history. He has worked previously as a research assistant on projects within the Departments of History, Geography, and Sociology. Mick’s current research project focuses on travel writing on Newfoundland in the nineteenth century and how European authors imagined and imposed ideas of class, gender, and race.


John Hartley

John is an MA student in economics at Memorial University of Newfoundland. Previously, he has jointly completed a Bachelor of Commerce (Co-op) and Bachelor of Arts at MUN and has work experience in positions that combined accounting, research, and writing. He is currently focusing his research on the theoretical and empirical analysis of Canadian labour market inefficiencies.


Opeyemi Jaunty-Aidamenbor

Opeyemi is a Ph.D. candidate researching the impact of immigrants on the labour market of Newfoundland and Labrador, especially the impact on labour market outcomes of the local population. She examines what group(s) is/are most affected and how. She is currently enrolled in the Interdisciplinary Ph.D. program (Economics, Sociology, and Political Science) at Memorial University of Newfoundland. She received an MSc in Human Resource Management from the University of Wales, United Kingdom.


Yan Fu

Yan is a doctoral candidate majoring in Public Administration at the Department of Public Policy and Administration of Zhejiang University and an assistant research fellow in Zhejiang Institution of Talent Development. Her research mainly concentrates on talent management practices in China, talent policy making and implementation deviations, and talent policy performance evaluation. Yan specializes in survey studies and case studies. She is also skilled with several quantitative analytical techniques including regression method and bibliometric method.


Evan McCarthy

Evan is an undergraduate research assistant pursuing a B.A. in Economics at Memorial University. He is assisting Dr. Fang with projects related to immigration and the labour market in Atlantic Canada. His research interests include economic growth strategies for Newfoundland and Labrador, labour market, immigration, natural resource, and environmental economics." He is hoping to pursue an MA in Economics in the following year.


Xiaojie Yang

Xiaojie is an Associate Professor at the School of Management and School of Emergency Management, Xihua university. He is also a graduate supervisor with a research focus on management, environmental economics, and emergency management. He has participated in one provincial and ministerial project, four departmental projects, and more than thirty government-commissioned projects. As the principal researcher, he participated in a national social science foundation project and two national social science foundation projects. He presided over and wrote more than forty projects commissioned by government departments and business enterprises and participated in the preparation of two policy recommendations that were both adopted by the provincial government. He has authored one textbook and has published more than ten scholarly papers on business management and environmental economics.


Xin Chen

Xin is an M.A. student majoring in Economics at Memorial University of Newfoundland. Her research interests include tuition fee determination factors in Canada and the recruitment and retention of international students in Canada. Xin specializes in survey studies and case studies. She is also very skilled in structural equation modeling and other quantitative analytical techniques, such as regression methods. To conduct her research, Chen participates in many consulting projects about Canadian immigration policy to acquire a better understanding of local practices.


Paula Struk Jaia

Paula has completed her Bachelors of Science, majoring in economics, at Memorial University of Newfoundland. Currently, she is an MA student in Economics at Memorial University of Newfoundland. She has worked on a number of projects for CARE (Collaborative Applied Research in Economics), as well as doing the economic forecasting for the prime economic indicators in Newfoundland. Also, she is assisting Dr. Fang in projects related to migration and labour market in Newfoundland and Labrador. Her research interest focus on the relationship between society and economics and combining economic theory with econometric analysis.


Sumaiya Akter

Sumaiya is an MA student in Economics at Memorial University of Newfoundland. She has accomplished the International Economic Policy course at George Mason University, USA. She is pursuing a Chartered Financial Analyst program. Sumaiya is an International Facilitator of the British Council, UK. She is passionate about conducting economic research using quantitative analytical techniques.


Qi Zhang

Qi is a researcher with an M.A. in Economics at Memorial University of Newfoundland. Qi has worked on a number of projects related to retirement age policy and working time policy on labor supply, savings, and consumption patterns as well as effects of workforce diversity on productivity, innovation, and entrepreneurship.


Jason Waters

Jason is an MA student in political science who has joined the team as a GA. Jason will provide qualitative policy research assistance as well as supporting the upcoming Immigration and Sustainable Development conference. His research interests focus on public policy and local governance.



Troy Osmond

Troy graduated from Memorial University with a Master of Arts in Economics in October 2018. Mr. Osmond currently works at the Newfoundland and Labrador branch of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) within the Policy, Economics and Communications department as an economic analyst. Mr. Osmond has conducted analysis on a vast range of topics including economic modeling, sectoral analysis, geographic performance, skills and educations shortages and fiscal conditions. Troy has presented his analysis to a range of groups in different provinces. These presentations and attending conferences have allowed him to grow his network of connections.


Alex Wells David

Alex is an undergraduate research assistant pursuing a joint Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Arts in Economics at Memorial University. He is assisting the Stephen Jarislowsky chair in various projects on immigration and labour research. His areas of interest include the economics of immigration and labour.


Shatabdi Paul

Shatabdi is currently doing her MA in Economics from Memorial University of Newfoundland. Her research interest lies in labor market economics and human resources. She has been working under the supervision of Dr. Tony Fang on different research areas including international student’s mobility and labor market immigration.


Daniel Godden Brown

Daniel is a senior undergraduate student pursuing a joint major in Computer Science and Economics. He is actively contributing to the development of a neural network architecture for applications to bio-informatics. Research interests include the aging workforce, immigration, machine learning, and software development. He is fascinated by the increasing impact of automation and artificial intelligence on the labour market. Daniel is a highly active personal equity investor. 


Fatemeh Naderi

Fatemeh is a third-year undergraduate student pursuing an Economics degree at Memorial University. She is currently working as a research volunteer for the Economic women’s council. Also, she will be assisting the research team under the supervision of Dr. Tony Fang in research areas including immigration integration and retention, human resource management, and labor economics.


Braden Dennis Smeaton


He is an undergraduate research assistant pursuing a joint Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Arts in Economics at Memorial University. His areas of interest include immigration, environmental economics, and investment.



Ramy–El Gharbawy   

He is an undergraduate research assistant majoring in Economics and minoring in Mathematics at Memorial University. His research interests include immigration, data collection, data analysis, economic trends, and investment.



Jarislowsky Chair in Cultural and Economic Transformation

230 Elizabeth Ave, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1B 3X9

Postal Address: P.O. Box 4200, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1C 5S7

Tel: (709) 864-8000