Pia Kontos PhD, MA, BA
Associate Professor
Dalla Lana School of Public Health
Contact Info
T: (416) 597-3422 7609
Toronto Rehab - University Centre - UHN
550 University Avenue, Suite 11-171
Toronto, ON, M5G 2A2
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Research Interests
Social and Cognitive Rehabilitation Sciences

Pia Kontos is a Senior Scientist at Toronto Rehab - UHN and is an Associate Professor in the Dalla Lana School of Public Health. She is a critical scholar committed to the transformation of long-term dementia care so it is more humanistic and socially just. She draws on the arts (e.g. music, dance, improvisational play) to enrich the lives of people living with dementia. She also creates research-based dramas to challenge structural violence in dementia care settings and to foster relational caring. She has presented and published across multiple disciplines on embodiment, relationality, ethics, and dementia.


Research Synopsis

Pia’s research program represents a convergence of several key interests: 1) the use of critical social theory and qualitative research methods (participant observation, interviews, focus groups) to examine the norms and assumptions underpinning care practices in long-term residential, rehabilitation, and community care settings; 2) the development of a relational model of citizenship which integrates insights from the fields of embodiment and dementia, citizenship, and human rights to address issues of social justice and state responsibility regarding the recognition and entitlements of individuals living with dementia; and 3) the development, implementation, and evaluation of arts-based initiatives (e.g. research-based theatre, film) to bridge her research on relationality, embodiment, and selfhood with the practice and ethics of dementia care.

Publications and Awards

View PubMed search of this faculty member's recent publications.

Recent Publications

  1. Kontos, P., Grigorovich, A.  Integrating citizenship, embodiment, and relationality: Towards a reconceptualization of dance and dementia in long-term care. Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics (Accepted). 
  2. Grigorovich, A., Kontos, P., Kontos, A. P. The “violent resident”: A critical exploration of the ethics of resident-to-resident aggression. Journal of Bioethical Inquiry 2019; DOI: 10.1007/s11673-019-09898-1.
  3. Kontos, P., Grigorovich, A., Dupuis, S., Jonas-Simpson, C., Mitchell, G., Gray, J. Raising the curtain on stigma associated with dementia: Fostering a new cultural imaginary for a more inclusive society. Critical Public Health 2018, https://doi.org/10.1080/09581596.2018.1508822.
  4. Kontos, P., Grigorovich, A. ‘Sleight of hand’ or ‘selling our soul’? Surviving as critical qualitative health researchers in a positivist world. Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung / Forum: Qualitative Social Research 2018; 19(2), 1-15.
  5. Kontos, P., Grigorovich, A. Rethinking musicality in dementia as embodied and relational. Journal of Aging Studies (Special Issue: Ageing Body and Society – Critical Perspectives, Future Challenges) 2018; 45:39-48.