Monthly features to profile the next generation of rehab researchers

When Institute Director Dr. Milos R. Popovic introduced the KITE Research Institute to the world two years ago, he had one goal – to redefine and broaden the rehab-specific perception of our work. 

The I AM KITE campaign, launched in January, pays tribute to the diverse up-and-coming talent at KITE who are making a huge impact in the world of rehab science. 

Today we introduce Alisa Grigorovich, a member of our Optimize team. Her passion for researching the ethical, social and policy implications of new technologies sets her up for success with improving the quality of care and quality of life for older adults living with illness or disability.


NAME: Alisa Grigorovich
EDUCATION: PhD in Gender, Feminist and Women's Studies, York University
KITE TEAM: Optimize
RESEARCH FOCUS: Technology and aging 


Alisa Grigorovich is an Assistant Scientist at KITE. By training she is an interdisciplinary health services and policy researcher who studies the role of stigma and other social factors driving health inequity in institutional and home care settings. She is interested in the ethical, social and policy implications of new technologies and other innovations. She specifically researches technologies that are introduced to improve the quality of care and quality of life for marginalized older adults living with chronic illness or complex disabilities. Her research is funded by the Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR), AGE-WELL NCE, and the Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement. She was born in Minsk, Belarus and lived in several cities in Israel before she immigrated to Toronto.


In the future, Alisa plans to develop ethical and policy guidelines regarding the responsible implementation and use of new technologies. She will focus on technologies that continuously monitor older adults remotely. As these technologies are developed and commercialized, Alisa will research their implementation in care settings to determine whether they improve the lives of older adults and caregivers. She will also identify challenges and opportunities for further technological development. 

If Alisa’s work could change one thing in the world by tomorrow, it would be to improve access and equity to rehabilitation and continuing care services. She would ensure these services are entirely publicly funded and available across all settings and populations.  


“I wanted to work with my postdoctoral supervisor Dr. Pia Kontos to learn how to do critically oriented ethnographic research and focus on ethically complex problems in continuing care settings,” says Alisa.

In response to what she loves about her job, Alisa says, “I remember when I was first introduced to critical social science research. I thought how amazing it would be to be paid to think, read, and ask and answer complex questions about the world.  This is what I find to be the most exciting part of being a scientist.” 


The I AM KITE video shows researchers “working across disciplines and sectors to creatively problem-solve and develop innovations to improve the life and wellbeing of persons aging with and into disabilities across diverse settings,” says Alisa.

In her spare time, Alisa like to walk or run with her dog along nature trails.