Dr. Chris Lalonde

Dr. Chris Lalonde

Dr. Christopher (Chris) Lalonde is a Professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Victoria. Prior to joining the department in 1998, Dr. Lalonde received his PhD from the University of British Columbia. He has been a research fellow with the Centre for Youth & Society since 2007. Dr. Lalonde's research focuses on cultural influences on identity formation and social-cognitive development, with a recent emphasis on research projects that examine the role of culture in the health and well-being of Indigenous youth. 

At UVic, Dr. Lalonde has helped to direct the LE,NONET Project that aimed to enhance the success of Aboriginal undergraduate students. He has also worked with the 29 First Nations communities in BC represented by the Inter-Tribal Health Authority to further understand the influence of cultural practices on youth health trajectories. 

I'm particularly interested in how young people create a sense of their own identity and what happens if they somehow stumble, fall, or fail in doing so. My research has looked at the relationship between identity formation and youth suicide, particularly among First Nations youth. 

— Dr. Chris Lalonde

In partnership with the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs and the Centre for Aboriginal Health Research, Dr. Lalonde has recently been leading a research project examining relations between cultural continuity and health status across all 64 First Nations in Manitoba. Informed by previous research in BC which showed lower rates of youth suicide within First Nations communities that better preserved and promoted cultural heritage and self-governance, the research team is replicating the model in Manitoba. This project explores the unique culture of Manitoba Indigenous populations and the impacts on youth health, well-being, and identity formation, a key aspect of youth development, depending on what is passed down through the education system and in less formal manners. 

If you're a young person, you have to create a sense of identity and you build it out of whatever your cultural community makes available to you. We want to identify what is unique about Manitoba First Nations and the ways in which they pass along their history, their culture, their sense of collective destiny. 

— Dr. Chris Lalonde

In addition to his own research, Dr. Lalonde is involved in a variety of research networks, including the Network for Aboriginal Mental Health Research in Canada, and with researchers in Australia examining ways to improve the mental health and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students in remote schools.

Recent publications

Allen, J. & Lalonde, C.E. (2020). Representations of natural environments, recurring characters and ways of living with the land in children’s retellings of First Nations oral narratives. Early Childhood Research Quarterly 53: 50-63. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecresq.2020.01.005

Lalonde, C.E. & Chandler, M.J. (2020). Cultural Continuity and Indigenous Youth Suicide. In M. Button & I Marsh (Eds.) Suicide and Social Justice: New Perspectives on the Politics of Suicide and Suicide Prevention. New York: Taylor & Francis/Routledge, 53-70.

Brussoni, M., George, A., Jin, A., Amram, O., McCormick, R., & Lalonde. C.E. (2018). Hospitalizations due to unintentional transport injuries among Aboriginal population of British Columbia, Canada: Incidence, changes over time and ecological analysis of risk markers. PLoS ONE 13(1): 1-18. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0191384  

More publications