Faculty A-Z

Desai Shan

Assistant Professor of Occupational Health Safety Post-doctoral Fellow (Dalhousie, uOttawa), PhD (Cardiff), LLB (Dalian Maritime University, Nottingham)

Community Health and Humanities



Faculty of Medicine, 4M134 Memorial University of Newfoundland St. John's, NL A1B 3V6

Research Interests

Occupational Health and Safety
Maritime Health (marine shipping, fishing, aquaculture, and offshore policies)
Health policy and systems
Workers’ compensation and return to work
Social determinants of health


MED6280: Community Health Research Methods
OHS 6003: Regulatory Approaches and Compensation Systems
MED6108: Directed Reading (Occupational Health and Safety: a Maritime Perspective)

Research Projects
  • Forgotten at sea: occupational health challenges for maritime workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Principal Investigator. Funded by Canadian Institutes of Health Research/COVID-19 Operating Grant (2022-2023)
  • Report on Fatigue in the Maritime Sector. Principal Investigator. Funded by Transport Canada (2022-2023)
  • Nunavut Search and Rescue (NSAR) Project: Supporting Inuit Health and Well-Being, Food Security, Economic Development, and Community Resilience by Strengthening Nunavut’s Whole-of-Society SAR Capabilities. Co-Investigator. Funded by Canada-Inuit Nunangat-United Kingdom Arctic Research Programme (2022 - 2025)
  • Future Ocean and Coastal Infrastructures (FOCI): Designing safe, sustainable and inclusive coastal communities and industries for Atlantic Canada. Co-investigator. Funded by Ocean Frontier Institute (2020-2024)
  • Maritime Occupational Health and Safety Governance: Regulating Occupational Health and Safety in the Canadian Arctic Gateway. Principal Investigator. Funded by Faculty of Medicine Special Award and Ocean Frontier Institute.
  • Policy and Practice in Return to Work after Work Injury: Challenging Circumstances and Innovative Solutions. Co-investigator. Funded by SSHRC/CIHR Healthy Productive Workforce Partnership Grant (2018-2023)
  • Canadian Maritime Governance System Mapping and Analysis: Ready for Future Challenges? Principal Investigator Funded by Ocean Frontier Institute Seed Fund (2018 – 2019)

Research grants and awards
  • Canadian Maritime Governance System Mapping and Analysis: Ready for Future Challenges? Principal Investigator Funded by Ocean Frontier Institute Seed Fund, $12,000 CAD (2018 – 2019)
  • Ron Rice Award for the Best Conference Paper at the 53rd Canada Transportation Research Forum Annual Conference. (($1,000 CAD)
Work-related Mobility and Fatigue on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River: Canadian seafarers’ experiences

Selected Journal Publications:
  1. Shan, D., (2022). Occupational health and safety challenges for maritime key workers in the global COVID-19 pandemic. International Labour Review. Vol. 161, No.2. https://doi.org/10.1111/ilr.12220.
  2. Yadav, OP., Sarkar, A., Shan, D., Rahman, A., & Moro, L., (2021) Occupational Noise Exposure and Health Impacts Among Fish Harvesters: A Systematic Review. International Maritime Health. 72(3): 199-205.
  3. Shan, D., & Zhang, P. (2021). Enforcing workers’ compensation rights for Chinese seafarers in human resource supply chains. The Economic and Labour Relations Review, 32(2), 247–265. https://doi.org/10.1177/1035304620962724
  4. Zhao, Z., Walters, D., & D Shan. (2020) Impediments to free movement of Chinese seafarers in the maritime labour market. The Economic and Labour Relations Review. 31(3):425-443. doi:10.1177/1035304620937881
  5. Shan, D. (2020). The Need to Enhance Marine Occupational Health and Safety in Canada. Ocean Yearbook. 34: 526–544.
  6. Desai Shan and Barbara Neis. (2020) "Employment-related mobility, regulatory weakness and potential fatigue-related safety concerns in short-sea seafaring on Canada’s Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway: Canadian seafarers’ experiences." Safety science 121 165-176.
  7. Desai Shan and Katherine Lippel (2019). "Occupational health and safety challenges from employment-related geographical mobility among Canadian seafarers on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway." NEW SOLUTIONS: A Journal of Environmental and Occupational Health Policy 29, no. 3: 371-396.
  8. Pengfei Zhang, Desai Shan, Minghua Zhao and Nicola Pryce-Roberts (2019). “Navigating Seafarers’ Rights to Life across the Shipping Industry.” Marine Policy 99 (2019) 80-86.
  9. Desai Shan (2018). "The Anti-Therapeutic Effects of Workers' Compensation in China: The Case of Seafarers." International Journal of Law and Psychiatry 58: 97-104.
  10. Desai Shan (2017) “Workplace Death at Sea: Chinese Surviving Families’ Experiences of Compensation Claims.” Relations Industrielles/Industrial Relations. 72 -1, 2017, 125-148.

More publications of Dr. Shan can be found here.