Janet Fast, BHE; MsC (Consumer Studies); PhD (Family & Consumer Economics)

Phased Post Retirement-Faculty, Faculty of Agricultural, Life and Environmental Sci - Human Ecology Dept


Phased Post Retirement-Faculty, Faculty of Agricultural, Life and Environmental Sci - Human Ecology Dept
316 Human Ecology Building
8905 - 116 St NW
Edmonton AB
T6G 2N1


Area of Study / Keywords

Economics of aging; Family/friend care; Public policy;; Technology and aging


Job/Research Area: Economics of aging and family/friend care; Family economic issues; Public policy (health and continuing care, labour, income security); Technologies to support family carers and older workers 


Co-author of two of the five most read articles published in the International Journal of Care and Caring in 2019 (Towards sustainable family care: using goals to reframe the user-centred design of technologies to support carers; and Critical thinking and reasoning abilities: Assistive Technologies);

Visiting Professor, Centre for International Research on Care, Labour and Economy, Leeds University, 2014.

Mirabelli-Glossop Award for Distinguished Contribution to the Vanier Institute on the Family, 2012


Major Responsibilities/Research Interests: Dr. Fast holds a doctorate in Family and Consumer Economics from Cornell University. Throughout her career, Janet has engaged in research, policy and practice with a focus on the economics of aging and the paid work and unpaid care work of family members. Her research addresses family, labour, health and continuing care policy issues, and she is often called on to consult with or advise government policy-makers and NGOs on policy related to caregiving and workplace supports. She currently co-leads an international and multidisciplinary research team investigating the intersection of work and care across the life course. She is a member of the leadership teams of two large, transdisciplinary and international research programs: the AGE-WELL National Centres of Excellence, Canada’s aging and technology network; and the UK-based Sustainable Care: Connecting People and Systems program.

Current Research Grants

As Co-investigator:

AGE-WELL (Aging gracefully across environments using technology to support wellness, engagement, and long life). National Centres of Excellence. Lead, Challenge Area on Financial Well-being and Employment; and Core Research Project Enhancing employability of older workers and family carers

Sustainable Care: Connecting people and systems. UK Economic and Social Research Council. 

 Health, Wealth, and Happiness: Families and a Good Old Age?. Kule Institute for Advanced Studies. $99,723.

 Health, Wealth, and Happiness: Families and a Good Old Age?. Kule Institute for Advanced Studies. $99,723.


Graduate students currently supervised and their research topics/areas 

Tori Bleeks (PhD, Aging). Dissertation title: The arts and aging.

Andrew Magnaye (MSc/PhD, Aging). 

Choong Kim (PhD, Aging). Dissertation title: Health outcomes for family caregivers.

Jonathan Lai (MSc, Aging).

Shanika Donalds (MSc/PhD, Aging). Thesis title: Older caregivers' Financial Well-being.

Jamie MacDonald (MSc, Aging)


Dr. Fast in the News

An end to the old ways of banking: New initiative to help older clients use digital and online services aimed at helping them stay safe during pandemic

'Not limited to adults': Many Canadian youth are caregivers, says U of A researcher.

More than a quarter of young Canadians aged 15 to 19 are caregivers, research showsal

Featured Publications

Trajectories of family care over the life course: Evidence from Canada

Fast, J., Eales, J., Keating, N., Lee, Y. & Kim, C..

Aging and Society, DOI: 10.1017/S0144686X19001806. 2020 January;

Seeking resilience: The care capacity goals of family carers and the role of technology in achieving them.

Leslie, M., Gray, R.., Eales, J., Fast, J., Magnaye, A., & Khayatzadeh-Mahani, A..

BMC Geriatrics, 20(1), DOI: https://bmcgeriatr.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12877-020-1455-x. 2020 January;

Caregivers’ “failure to thrive”: A case for health and continuing care systems transformation

Magnaye, A., Eales, J., Fast, J., Stolow, M. & Leslie, M.

Special joint issue of the Healthcare Management Forum and the International Journal of Care Coordination on system transformation. DOI: https://journals.sagepub.com/eprint/3S6K5HFRMDWTRD8BDBGN/full . 2020 January;

The cost of caring: Out‐of‐pocket expenditures and financial hardship among Canadian carers

Duncan, K., Fast, J., Shooshtari, S., Roger, K., & Han, J.

International Journal of Care and Caring DOI: 10.1332/239788220X15845551975572 . 2020 January;

The availability and use of flexible work arrangements and caregiving leaves: Lessons learned about policies and practice

Lero, D., & Fast, J. E.

Journal of Law and Equity. 2020 January; 14

Life course trajectories of family care

Keating, N. C., Eales, J. Funk, L., Fast, J. & Min, J.

International Journal of Care and Caring, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1332/239788219X15473079319309. 2019 January;

Shooshtari, S., Duncan, K.A., Roger, K., Fast, J., Han, J.

Journal of Family and Economic Issues. 2017 January;

Pei, X., Luo, H., Lin, Z., Keating, N., & Fast, J.

Journal of Cross-Cultural Gerontology. 2017 January; 28 (2):1-16

Duncan, K. A., Shooshtari, S., Roger, K., Fast, J., & Han, J.

Journal of Financial Counseling and Planning. 2016 January; 27 (2):277-296

De Jong Gierveld, J., Keating, N. & Fast, J.

Canadian Journal on Aging,. 2015 January; 34 (2):125-136

Keating, N., Fast, J., Lero, D., Lucas, S., & Eales, J.

Journal of the Economics of Aging. 2014 January; 3