Desre Kramer

Associate Director

Dr. Desre Kramer is the Associate Director and Staff Scientist at the Occupational Cancer Research Centre. She is an Adjunct Professor at the University of Waterloo, the School of Public and Occupational Health at Ryerson University, and an Adjunct Scientist at the Institute for Work & Health. Until the end of 2011, she was the Associate Director of the Centre of Research Expertise for the Prevention of Musculoskeletal Disorders (CRE-MSD) at the University of Waterloo. She holds an MES in Environmental Studies from York University, an MSc in Public Health Sciences from the University of Toronto, and a PhD from OISE/University of Toronto. Her research interests are in knowledge transfer, knowledge mobilization, social network analysis, qualitative research, diffusion of innovation, and workplace intervention research. At OCRC, she takes the lead on intervention and prevention research. Examples of her present research are exploring ways to have questions on occupational exposures included in electronic medical records, investigating the gap between awareness of occupational carcinogens and achieving change in workplaces and at the community level, increasing outside workers’ adoption of sun-exposure protection, and evaluating the engagement of intermediaries as conduits to policy changes. She has conducted research in the construction, transportation, electrical utilities and manufacturing sectors, including a seven-year research study in the diffusion of innovation to improve the health of construction workers. She was a journalist for many years and has over 550 articles published.

Key Appointments

  • Adjunct Professor, Department of Kinesiology, at the University of Waterloo
  • Adjunct Professor at the School of Public and Occupational Health at Ryerson University
  • Adjunct Scientist at the Institute for Work & Health


  • MES (Work and Health), York University (1997)
  • M.Sc (Sociology of Medicine), University of Toronto (1999)
  • Ph.D. (Adult Education), Ontario Institute for Studies in Education/University of Toronto (2002)

OCRC Projects