Research Chair


Dr. Arlene Astell

Dr. Arlene Astell

Dr. Arlene Astell joined Ontario Shores as the Inaugural Research Chair in Community Management of Dementia and an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto in 2013.

She is also Professor of Health Services Research in the Centre for Assistive Technology and Connected Healthcare (CATCH) at the University of Sheffield and an Honorary Professor in Psychology and Neuroscience at the University of St. Andrews in the United Kingdom.

A psychologist by training, Dr. Astell earned her PhD on the impact of dementia on communication from the University of Warwick. She qualified as a Clinical Psychologist in 2006 and has worked with older adults in both health and research settings for over 20 years.

Currently, Dr. Astell is working on developing creative interventions to support people to live and age as well as possible with dementia and other conditions of ageing. This includes using touch screen technology to support communication and provide stimulating and engaging activities for people with dementia.

Dr. Astell is also Principal Investigator of Novel Assessment of Nutrition and Ageing, developing a touch screen toolkit to improve assessment and detection of early signs of malnutrition, frailty and cognitive decline in older adults. She also is a leader in several initiatives which work with older adults and health and social care staff to engage with and educate the assisted living technology industry to develop products people want to use.

Dr. Astell is also the UK lead for AAL-WELL, an organization dedicated to investigating novel technologies to support people with mild cognitive impairment to live well at home.