A rheumatologist and clinical epidemiologist, Dr. Hawker has two decades experience conducting observational and health services research in the area of two common musculoskeletal conditions, osteoarthritis, OA, and osteoporosis. Her research has focused mainly on the determinants, consequences and quality of care for people with these conditions. In particular, examining appropriateness of use of total joint replacement surgery (TJR) for the hip and knee, and the determinants and outcomes of receipt of TJR, including the role of pain, physical functioning, sociodemographic characteristics, and psychosocial factors. Dr. Hawker has been the primary supervisor of 15 master's, PhD and post-doctoral trainees, in addition to serving on the thesis committees of many others, and is the past director of the University of Toronto Clinical Epidemiology training program (2000-2006).
Dr. Hawker is currently the chair of the Department of Medicine at the University of Toronto.