Picture of  Akram Mahani

Akram Mahani PhD, MSc, BSc JSGS Faculty, U of R

Assistant Professor, Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy, University of Regina

Areas of Interest

  • Healthy sustainable cities and communities for all (including urban planning and governance)
  • Multi-sectoral collaboration for improving population health outcomes
  • Integrated care with a focus on integrating public health and primary care
  • Healthy public policies
  • Health impact assessment
  • Population health
  • Health in all policies
  • Evaluation research
  • Community-based research and research co-design
  • Health policy
  • Health equity
  • Integrated knowledge translation
  • Policy analysis (problem co-framing, policy co-design, policy implementation, co-evaluation)


Akram Mahani is a qualitative researcher with wide-ranging empirical interests and background. Her research background spans across multiple population health, health policy, and health services research areas. She has more than 20 years of experience in research, teaching, administration, and leadership in multi-disciplinary and applied settings across seven universities in three countries: Iran, England, and Canada.

Prior to joining JSGS, Akram spent two years as the evaluation coordinator for the Saskatchewan Population Health & Evaluation Research Unit's (SPHERU) Dementia Supports in Rural Saskatchewan project. Before that, she was a researcher at the School of Public Policy at the University of Calgary, where she contributed to a number of different research projects, among others: primary care transformation in Alberta, funding models in support of integrated care, technology support for family caregivers caring for older adults in communities. Akram was also a researcher at the School of Epidemiology and Public Health at the University of Ottawa, where she learned a great deal about global health under the mentorship of Professor Ronald Labonte. Between February 2011 and September 2015, Akram held the position of Assistant Professor at the Department of Health Policy, Economics and Management at Kerman University of Medical Sciences in Iran. Her research during this time mainly focused on Health in All Policies and multi-sectoral collaboration for improving population health outcomes.

In 2013, Akram founded the International Journal of Health Policy and Management (Impact Factor 5.007) and served as its inaugural editor-in-chief until late August 2021.

She is currently co-designing, in collaboration with different stakeholders and knowledge users, a long-term research plan for the Healthy Sustainable Cities project, with a strong health equity focus.


  • PhD, Health Policy and Management, The University of Manchester, Manchester Business School (UK)
  • MSc, Health Management, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran (Iran)
  • BSc, Hospital Management, Kerman University of Medical Sciences, Kerman (Iran)

Supervisory Capacity

Akram Mahani is currently accepting applications from new PhD and MPP students for September 2023 in the following research areas: Healthy sustainable cities and communities for all; multi-sectoral collaboration for improving population health outcomes; healthy public policies; integrated care with a focus on integrating public health and primary care; and health impact assessment.

Recent Grants


  • CIHR Catalyst Grant: Policy Research for Health System Transformation (2023): “Cross-Sectoral Collaboration to Improve Outcomes for Children/Youth in Vulnerable Contexts”; Principal Investigator. Awarded $150,000. Start March 2023, End April 2024

  • SHRF (Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation) Establishment Grant (2023): “Understanding how municipalities work in partnership with local public health systems to enhance population health outcomes and reduce health inequalities”; Principal Investigator; Awarded $150,000. Start July 2023, End April 2026.

  • SHRF (Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation) Align Grant (2023): “Integration of Health into Urban Planning Policies”. Principal Investigator. Awarded $10,000. Start January 2023, End January 2024.
  • SHRF (Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation) Align Grant (2023): Development of an Evidence‐Informed Strategy for Primary Care Recruitment and Retention in Saskatchewan. Co-Applicant. Project Lead: Dr. Angela Baerwald (University of Saskatchewan). Awarded $9,998.

  • CIHR Operating Grant: Knowledge Synthesis (2018): “A Scoping Review of Literature on Different Models of Allocating Funds to Facilitate Integrated Care”; Co-applicant; awarded $62,500

  • AGE-WELL Network of Centres of Excellence (NCE) Catalyst Funding Program (2017): “Developing User-Centred Digital Supports for Informal Networks that Provide Care for Elders: A Co-Design Approach”; Co-applicant; awarded $49,000

Select Publications

Peer-Reviewed Journal Publications
  • Leslie, M., Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A., Birdsell, J., Forest, P.G., Henderson, R., Gray, R.P., Schraeder, K., Seidel, J., Zwicker, J. and Green, L.A., (2020). An implementation history of primary health care transformation: Alberta’s primary care networks and the people, time and culture of change. BMC Family Practice, 21(1), pp.1-20.
  • Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A. Wittevrongel, K. Petermann, L. Graham, I. Zwicker, J. (2020) Stakeholders’ engagement in co-producing policy-relevant knowledge to facilitate employment for persons with developmental disabilities. BMC Health Research Policy and Systems. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12961-020-00548-2
  • Leslie, M. Gray R.P. Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A. (2020). What is ‘Care Quality’ and Can it be Improved by Information and Communication Technology? A Typology of Family Caregivers’ Perspectives. Scandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences. https://doi.org/10.1111/scs.12837
  • Leslie, M. Eales, J. Fast, J. Gray, R.P. Magnaye, A. Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A. (2020). The care capacity goals of family carers and the role of technology in achieving them. BMC Geriatrics. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12877-020-1455-x
  • Khayatzadeh-Mahani, Wittevrongel, K., Nicholas, D., Zwicker, J. (2019). Prioritizing barriers and solutions to improve employment for persons with developmental disabilities, Disability and Rehabilitation. https://doi.org/10.1080/09638288.2019.1570356
  • Leslie, M. Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A. MacKean, G. (2019). Recruitment of caregivers into health services research: Lessons from a user-centred design study. BMC Research Involvement and Engagement. 5 (17). https://doi.org/10.1186/s40900-019-0150-6
  • Walsh, C.M. Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A. Leslie, M. (2019). Towards Social Services System Integration: A Report from Alberta’s Elder Care Support Provision Community. The School of Public Policy Publications. 12(16). https://doi.org/10.11575/sppp.v12i0.61837
  • Leslie, M. Eales, J. Fast, J. Mortenson, W. B. Atoyebi, O. Khayatzadeh-Mahani, (2019). Towards sustainable caregiving: Using goals to re-frame the user-centred design of technologies to support caregivers, International Journal of Care and Caring. 1-6. https://doi.org/10.1332/239788219X15597493546652
  • Masoud A, Khayatzadeh-Mahani A, Mehrolhasani M.H. (2019). Features of Effective Intersectoral Collaboration Structure in Health. Hakim Health Sys Res (In Persian), 21(3):191-199.
  • Khayatzadeh-Mahani, Nolte, E., Sutherland, J. Forest, P.G. (2018). International Experiments with Different Models of Allocating Funds to Facilitate Integrated Care: A Scoping Review Protocol, BMJ Open. http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2017-021374
  • Khayatzadeh-Mahani,, Leslie, M. (2018). Policies Supporting Informal Caregivers Across Canada: A Scoping Review Protocol, BMJ Open, 8(6). http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2017-019220
  • Leslie, M., Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A., Webb, C. Avery, G. (2018). Negotiating ‘Unnecessary’: Micro Clinical, Macro Political, and Co-Production Approaches to Defining Necessity in Care. Canadian Family Physician. 64 (8), 562-563. PMCID: PMC6189878
  • Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A., Ruckert, A., Labonte, R., Kenis, P., & Akbari Javar, M.R. (2018). Health in All Policies (HiAP) Governance: Lessons from Network Governance, Health Promotion International. 34(4), 779-791. https://doi.org/10.1093/heapro/day032
  • Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A., Ruckert, A., & Labonte, R. (2018). Obesity prevention: co-framing for intersectoral ‘buy-in’. Critical Public Health. 28(1), 4-11. https://doi.org/10.1080/09581596.2017.1282604
  • Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A., Labonte, R., Ruckert, A., & de Leeuw, E. (2017). Using sustainability as a collaboration magnet to encourage multi-sector collaborations for health. Global Health Promotion. 26(1). 100-104. https://doi.org/10.1177/1757975916683387
  • Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A., Breton, E. Ruckert, A., & Labonte, R. (2017). Banning shisha smoking in public places in Iran: an advocacy coalition framework perspective on policy process and change. Health Policy and Planning, 32(6), 835-846. https://doi.org/10.1093/heapol/czx015
  • Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A., Labonte, R., & Ruckert, A. (2017). Could the WHO’s Framework on Engagement with Non-State Actors (FENSA) be a threat to tackling childhood obesity? Global Public Health.13(9), 1337-1340. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17441692.2017.1342852

Book Chapters (Peer-Reviewed)

  • Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A., Labonte, R., and Ruckert, A. (2018). Global health diplomacy, in: Oxford Handbook of Global Health Politics, editors: Kelley Lee, Colin McInnes, Jeremy Youde, Publisher: Oxford University Press.
Non-Peer-Reviewed Publications
  •  Mahani, A. Petit, M. Stone, W. Dudar, L. (2023). Coordinating Human Service Systems for the Vulnerable: Lessons from The Regina intersectoral Partnership (TRiP). Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy. Available at: https://www.schoolofpublicpolicy.sk.ca/research-ideas/publications-and-policy-insight/policy-brief/trip-coordinating-human-service-systems.php.

  • McIntosh, T. Mahani, A. Jeffery, B. Novik, N. (2021). Enhancing Social Inclusion for Older Adults Living with Dementia: A Community-Based Collective Impact Approach in Rural Saskatchewan. Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy. Available at: schoolofpublicpolicy.sk.ca

  • Jeffery, B., Novik, N., McIntosh, T. Mahani, A. (2021). Dementia Knowledge Survey Report. Interventions to Enhance Social Inclusion of Older Adults with Dementia in Saskatchewan. Saskatchewan Population Health and Evaluation Research Unit. Available at spheru.ca

  • Leslie, M., Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A., Webb, C. (2017). Quantity or Quality of Life: Balancing moral priorities as the population ages. Swiss Medical Weekly, https://smw.ch/en/op-eds/post/quantity-or-quality-of-life/
  • Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A. Forest, PG. (2017). Methods of payment to hospitals: towards a typology. Discussion Paper. The School of Public Policy. University of Calgary.
Conference Papers
  • Leslie, M. Gray, R. P. Birdsell, J. Crowshoe, R. Forest, P.G. Green, L. MacDonald, T. Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A. Schraeder, K. Seidel, J. Zwicker, J. Henderson, R. (2019). Key Challenges for Alberta’s Primary Care Networks. CASHPR Conference, Halifax, Canada.
  • Leslie, M. and Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A. (2018). Evolving how we design gerontechnology software: User-centered design and the shift from ‘needs’ to ‘goals’ in symposium: Caregiver-centered design of gerontechnologies for supporting unpaid care in the community organized by International Society of Gerontechnology XI World Conference in St. Petersburg, Florida, USA.
  • Leslie, M. and Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A. (2018). Researcher Panelist presenting “Tracking Down Caregiver Goals: Co-Design in Action at Technology that Cares”. https://events.huddol.com/event/technology-that-cares/