I believe that ‘everybody should have dignity and access to resources which meet their requirements’ (Human Rights principles adopted by the United Nations). This becomes even more important when dealing with persons with disabilities and vulnerable conditions. I belong to critical realism school of thinking who believe that the reality exists at different analytical levels and there is a reality independent of our knowledge about it (i.e., we can get closer to reality by understanding different levels of analytical truth
and its interaction, but we may never get the complete truth). These principles form the foundations and philosophical base for all my research. Hence, I am interested in providing appropriate access to people with disabilities, particularly those with hearing disabilities, which may help improve their life experience and quality of life. In addition, I also believe that the research should be timely, futuristic, and proactive in order to meet the needs of both people with disabilities, and the society in general.
I have an interest in wide range of research topics in disability research, with a main emphasis on hearing healthcare. The following figure provides a summary of my research interests. I have publications in the majority of these areas although my interests are more developed in some.
In my view, the management of disabilities should be holistic and hence my interest in bio-psycho-social perspective and interdisciplinary research. Less than 5% of research comes from places where over 80% of hearing impaired population live. The result is an important gap in our knowledge and from this arises my interest in increasing the focus on developing countries. Moreover, most of the research in hearing healthcare is lab-based studying a small number of people in great depth. However, to deal one of the
most prevalent chronic conditions such as hearing loss, there is a need for a public health approach.
My main research areas include: psychosocial aspects of hearing loss; applications of World Health Organization’s International classification of Functioning, disability and Health; developing peer support program to deal with hearing and balance disorders; involvement of significant others in audiological rehabilitation; occupational and recreational hearing loss, and the professional and regulatory aspects of hearing healthcare. I also have some new projects I am working on developing an interest and expertise in the following areas: assessment and management of tinnitus; cross-cultural research in hearing healthcare; and hearing aid functionality and the dispensing process.
I have experience in using both qualitative and quantitative research methods with significant experience in a variety of research methods used in disability research. Theories from various disciplines including psychology, sociology and medicine form the backbone of the research studies I undertake. Moreover, my research portfolio comprises of a mixture of lab and field-based projects.
I have good publication record with over 40 publications in academic journals and professional magazines and 15 conference papers/posters.