Research affiliates

Faculty of Arts

• Joyce Chadya is an associate professor of African history whose research deals with social justice and the rights of women and children in post-colonial contexts. She is a member of CHRR’s advisory board

• Dr. Annette Desmarais (PhD in geography) is Canada Research Chair in human rights, social justice and food sovereignty. Her research focuses on food sovereignty, agrarian change, international development theory and practice, and rural social movementsShe is conducting research on the theory, practice and politics of food sovereignty in Canada, Spain and Mexico. Desmarais also helped design the new Master of Human Rights program.

• Dr. Shawna Ferris is an assistant professor in Women’s and Gender Studies. She researches and teaches in feminist cultural studies and critical race theory. Her research interests include cultural representations of and responses to sex work/ers, as well as cultural marginalization, and the raced, classed and gendered violence resulting from that. Her current research examines anti-violence, anti-racism and decolonization-oriented commemorative activism stemming from the growing number of missing and murdered women—many of whom are Aboriginal people—in urban centres across the Canadian West.

• Dr. Stephan Jaeger is head of German and Slavic Studies. He researches on narratives, representations, and memory of war (especially World War One and World War Two) in German and European literature, film, historiography, and museums. He asks how moral/legal definitions of war and human rights relate to war’s representation and remembrance, and how war’s representation links past, present, and future. His teaching also includes other human rights-related topics such as German colonialism and genocide, as well as German identity and refugees.

• Political scientist Dr. Kiera Ladner holds the Canada Research Chair in Indigenous politics and governance. Her research project on constitutional reconciliation examines the potential for political reconciliation between Indigenous nations and the settler state, given the long history of injustice, discrimination, oppression, domination, regime replacement and the (attempted) destruction of nations. Dr. Ladner has also developed Mamawipawin – a space for community-based research with Indigenous Peoples.

• Dr. Adam Muller is preoccupied with rights issues arising from the sometime violent collisions of moral, aesthetic, political, and strategic discourses in works of art, especially works of narrative fiction and film. His work seeks to generate insights into the moral and other indignities accompanying suffering, spectatorial ethics (i.e. with the moral dimension of witnessing atrocity), historical truth claims, and representations of the defence and diminishment of human freedom. His scholarship is deeply implicated in a wider set of juridical, historical, moral-philosophical, and popular conversations about the universality of human rights. Muller is playing a lead role in development of a Master of Human Rights program.

• Economist Dr. Umut Oguzoglu‘s research interests are in labour economics, health economics, Aboriginal economic development, economic growth, panel data econometrics and applied econometrics. He is currently working on a research project that examines income determinants in First Nations Reserves. He has published papers on the financial protection of health insurance, disability, income support stigma and retirement incentives.

• Dr. Adele Perry is professor of history and a senior fellow with St. John’s College.  She is interested in histories of gender, colonialism, and migration, especially in the 19th century.  She has published On the Edge of Empire: Gender, Race, and the Making of British Columbia, 1849-1871 and Colonial Relations: The Douglas-Connolly Family and the Nineteenth-Century Imperial World. Perry is working on fur-trade governance and the 19th-century imperial world and on histories of drinking water and colonialism in Winnipeg, and has recently published Aqueduct: Colonialism, Resources and the Histories We Remember.

• Dr. Janice Ristock is provost and professor of women’s and gender studies. Her scholarly work reflects an overarching focus on community mental health and social justice. Her research is in three intersecting areas: gender and sexuality; interpersonal violence; and HIV/AIDS and stigma. She has gained international recognition for her research on violence in same-sex relationships and on communitybased research methodologies.

Dr. Lara Rosenoff Gauvin is an assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a scholar, artist, activist, and curator whose work centres the knowledge and practices of survivors of conflict and forced displacement, particularly in Northern Uganda, where she has worked since 2004. Her research interests include: Indigenous knowledge, land tenure and rights, inter-generational relations, social repair, witnessing, museology, and responsive multimodal methodologies. Her current work examines Acoli Indigenous governance and law as it pertains to community-based land protection initiatives in post-conflict and post-displacement contexts.

•  Dr. Myroslav Shkandrij is a Slavic studies professor who researches cultural politics in the former Soviet Union, and the history of Ukrainian-Russian and Ukrainian-Jewish relations. His focus is on nationalism, government policies toward Ukrainians and Jews, and the depiction in literature and the arts. He has also worked on issues raised by the Famine of 1932-33 (the Holodomor) and on the role of public intellectuals in Russia and Ukraine.

• Psychologist Dr. Katherine Starzyk focuses on determining the factors that lead people to support reparations for historical intergroup harms. She is involved in a multidisciplinary project on water as a human right administered by the Centre for Human Rights Research.

• Dr. Jocelyn Thorpe is an associate professor in Women’s and Gender Studies. Her research examines the history and legacies of colonialism in the Canadian context, seeking to understand how past discourses and relationships of power lead to and naturalize present-day social and environmental inequities. Drawing from critical race, feminist and environmental studies scholarship, her work aims to open up possibilities for just relationships to emerge among humans and between humans and the non-human world in which we live.

• Sociologist Dr. Jane Ursel was the founding director of RESOLVE, a tri-provincial research network on interpersonal violence with centres at the Universities of Manitoba, Regina and Calgary.  She has led two longitudinal studies: an 18-year analysis of the first family violence criminal court in Canada and a six-year study of women who have experienced violence in their intimate partner relationships.

• Psychology professor Dr. Jacquie Vorauer‘s research centres on “metaperceptions,” that is, people’s beliefs about how they are viewed by others. In particular, she examines communication breakdowns that pose obstacles to positive relationships between individuals and groups. Her long-term goal is to identify ways in which such obstacles can be overcome. Vorauer is applying her expertise to First Nations water rights research co-ordinated by the Centre for Human Rights Research.

• Sociologist Dr. Lori Wilkinson focuses on the migration and resettlement experiences of refugees, particularly children, youth and their families. She is editor of the Journal of International Migration and Integration and the director of Immigration Research West. Wilkinson is working on a nationally funded study on the arrival experiences of Syrian refugees to Western Canada and is involved with the Canadian Child and Youth Refugee Research Coalition.

• Sociologist Dr. Andrew Woolford has an ongoing interest in genocide studies, including in relation to Canadian Aboriginal Peoples. He also works on restorative justice and conflict resolution. Woolford has studied the extent to which the neoliberal policy shift has affected the rights and social justice opportunities of marginalized inner-city residents.

Faculty of Law

Dr. Jonathan Black-Branch is dean of the Faculty of Law, where he teaches human rights law. He is also chair of the International Law Association committee on nuclear weapons, non-proliferation and contemporary international law. Black-Branch has worked in the United Kingdom, Denmark and Switzerland.

• Adjunct Prof. Aimée Craft has expertise in Anishinaabe and Canadian Aboriginal law. Her award-winning 2013 book Breathing Life Into the Stone Fort Treaty focuses on understanding and interpreting treaties from an Anishinaabe inaakonigewin (legal) perspective. Craft is a key member of the Centre for Human Rights Research water rights research consortium and was named one of Canada’s most influential lawyers.

• Associate Law dean Lisa Fainstein is past president of the Women’s Legal Education and Action Fund (Manitoba) and chaired the children’s rights committee of the Manitoba Association of Rights and Liberties. She teaches family law and property law and has published on equality issues in family law. She has also served on the boards of organizations devoted to environmental issues and women’s safety.

• Dr. Gerald Heckman’s research interests include administrative and constitutional law, human rights law and refugee law. His recent publications have focused on the influence of international human rights norms on states’ domestic legal systems. His dissertation focused on the gap between procedural rights guaranteed to refugee claimants by international human rights treaties and the domestic procedural protections provided claimants under the Canadian, American and Australian systems for refugee protection decision making.

Prof. David Ireland practiced criminal law as both Crown and defence counsel before joining the Faculty of Law. His research interests include the effect of social class on justice system outcomes.

• Prof. Darcy MacPherson’s research is diverse, covering areas such as corporate law, corporate criminality and disability rights. His service work is largely in the area of human rights, particularly as they relate to disability issues. He is both the president and chair of the board of the Canadian Centre on Disability Studies and chair of the steering committee of Inclusive Education for Children with Disabilities in Ukraine, a five-year, $4.7-million project whose major funder is the Canadian International Development Agency.

• Dr. Mary Shariff is associate dean of research and also teaches at the University of Manitoba’s Natural Resources Institute. Her diverse research interests include bioethics and law; law of contracts; natural resources law; biogerontology, aging and the law; and assisted death and palliative care.

• Dr. Donn Short’s primary research interest is safe schools, with a focus on homophobic and transphobic bullying. He is the recipient of a research fellowship from the Law Foundation of British Columbia, as well as a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council standard research grant. Dr. Short is committed to the rights of artists and is a member of PEN Canada and the Playwrights Guild of Canada. At Robson Hall, he founded the group Outlaws and he is the founding editor of the Canadian Journal of Human Rights.

• Dr. Lorna Turnbull‘s primary areas of research include women’s equality as shaped by laws related to economic rights and obligations, and workplace regulation and social inclusion as these impact upon care for dependents. Her teaching interests include international and domestic human rights law, taxation law and policy, gender and equality and women’s rights in a global context. Dr. Turnbull holds a cross appointment with the Arthur V. Mauro Centre for Peace and Justice at St. Paul’s College.

Faculty of Education

• Dr. Marlene Atleo co-ordinates the University of Manitoba’s adult and post-secondary education program and teaches Aboriginal and cross-cultural education to teacher candidates. Her current focus is on understanding the development and delivery of diverse and non-traditional community programs for credentials in post-secondary education. She also works on human rights to socio-historical integrity in education, on capacity development and on heritage language rights for educational success of Aboriginal people.

• Dr. Nadine Bartlett is as assistant professor with 22 years of experience in the public school system as a classroom teacher, resource teacher and student-services administrator. Her career as an educator has included teaching in urban, rural and northern Indigenous communities. Her research focuses on inclusive, person-centered and strength-based models of support for marginalized children, youth and families.

• Dr. Michelle Honeyford‘s research focuses on literacy, identity and citizenship, particularly around issues related to rights and representation. Her work involves building partnerships with teachers, schools, and communities to design more equitable, advocative and activist pedagogies for youth – including undocumented immigrant youth, youth in alternative education, and youth in afterschool programs – largely through writing, digital photography and multimodal literacies. She co-leads the Manitoba Writing Project with colleague Wayne Serebrin.

• Dr. Melanie Janzen is an assistant professor in the Department of Curriculum, Teaching and Learning at the University of Manitoba. Her research is informed by critical and feminist theories, with a central focus on exploring the inter-related workings of power and discourses, particularly as they relate to the identities of teachers and children. Her current research projects include two SSHRC-funded projects on exploring the emotional toll of obligation in teaching and on improving educational experiences for children in care. In addition, she is interested in critical analyses of children’s rights and the implications of rights-based discourses for children and schooling.

• Dr. Robert Mizzi is an assistant professor in the Department of Educational Administration, Foundations, and Psychology. His research examines the politics and practices of equity and diversity in community and school contexts. He specifically focuses on sexual and gender minority educators (i.e., lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer) but also examines the experiences of educators who cross borders to teach in international contexts.

• Dr. Nathalie Piquemal‘s research and teaching examine education from a human rights perspective. Her specialty is intercultural and international education, with a focus on issues of cultural discontinuities as experienced by minority students. Dr. Piquemal’s areas of interest also include research ethics; immigration, language and culture; cultural and linguistic discontinuities; and Aboriginal education.

• Dr. Wayne Serebrin is an associate professor in language and literacy. He and colleague Michelle Honeyford lead the Manitoba Writing Project, which organized a forum for teachers on writing for social justice and human rights and a summer institute for educators who want to become better writers. Serebrin is working with teachers from 17 schools to create spaces that value children’s and youths’ everyday, local writing discourses and connect them with global discourses.

Faculty of Social Work

Dr. Marlyn Bennett is director of the Masters of Social Work Based in Indigenous Knowledges. She specializes in Indigenous child welfare policy, qualitative research methods using Photovoice and digital storytelling and cultural safety for Indigenous women who have experienced sexual violence.

• Prof. Colin Bonnycastle is director of the northern social work program in Thompson. His work addresses criminal and restoration justice; social policy and poverty. He has done or is involved in research in areas of homelessness, gendered violence, childcare, and women and economic restructuring in the North. He has also written in the areas of social work ethics, charity, religion and social welfare, and social justice.

• Dr. Maria Cheung is an associate professor whose research focuses on human rights and spiritual minorities. She received a $3-million grant from the Canadian International Development Agency and was co-principal investigator for 10 years of a project on the human rights of rural women in China. Her recent research explores discrimination against and marginalization of the spiritual minority group Falun Gong in Canada, evidence on forced organ harvesting in China, and the social capital of Chinese immigrants.

• Dr. Judy Hughes researches how professional service providers understand and respond to intimate partner violence. She recently studied the ways women indirectly disclose abuse to community health nurses and how the nurses recognize these verbal cues as indicators of intimate partner violence. In another project, Hughes studies the experiences of women who are negotiating child custody arrangements and/or being investigated within the child welfare system.

• Dr. Hai Luo’s work addresses social and health issues of older adults of diverse cultural backgrounds and the implications to social work theory and practice. Her research and publications includes cross-cultural aging, end-of-life issues from cultural perspectives, barriers for older immigrants to access healthcare, gambling and addictions among older immigrants, elder abuse in culturally minoritized groups, and social capital for older adults. She is involved in local and international projects to study active aging and cultural minority older adults.

• Dr. Eveline Milliken works in the inner-city Social Work ACCESS Program and the Aboriginal Child Welfare Initiative. Prof. Milliken’s areas of interest include women’s issues/feminist perspectives; cross -cultural communication; and cultural safety.

• Dr. Cathy Rocke is an assistant professor whose current research program is focused on addressing and evaluating how we reconcile the relationships between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal peoples in Canada, both on campus and in the community, through intergroup dialogue.

Faculty of Medicine

• Dr. Brenda Elias is an associate professor in Community Health Sciences at the University of Manitoba, and former co-director and founding member of the Manitoba First Nations Centre for Aboriginal Health Research. Her research interests include gender health, mental health, social determinants, health info-structures, Indigenous and inter-transdisciplinary health research, and research ethics. She conducts multilevel quantitative and mixed-method studies into the social, cultural, biological, economic, political and historical determinants of health. Dr. Elias has partnered with the Centre for Human Rights Research to demonstrate the power of collaborations in advancing health rights of populations.

• Dr. Linda Larcombe’s research is focused on the study of genetic, socio-cultural and environmental factors contributing to infectious disease susceptibility and resistance in Canadian Aboriginal populations. Trained in anthropology, her approach to infectious disease research is multidisciplinary and draws from medical anthropology, immunogenetics, immunology, ancient DNA, geographic information systems, land use studies, history and archaeology to gain new perspectives regarding disease susceptibility and resistance.

• Dr. Pamela Orr is a physician, teacher, administrator and researcher with an interest in circumpolar and Indigenous health. Her current research focuses on the biologic and social determinants of health, and on health-care systems. Orr is a consultant with the J.A. Hildes Northern Medical Unit and associate editor of the International Journal of Circumpolar Health. She is vice-president of the Circumpolar Health Research Network, and on the board of the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease.

• Dr. Marcelo Urquia is an associate professor and research scientist at the Manitoba Centre for Health Policy, Department of Community Health Sciences. He holds a Canada Research Chair in Applied Population Health. Urquia conducts epidemiological studies using large linked administrative databases. One major focus of his research is on immigrant health, particularly surrounding health issues that intersect with the rights of immigrant women, girls, minors and families, such as prenatal sex selection and child marriage.

Faculty of Environment, Earth and Resources

• Dr. Shirley Thompson is an associate professor at the Natural Resources Institute. Her research interests lie with food, housing and water security in northern Manitoba Aboriginal communities, where the sustainability and health disadvantage is most evident. She has specialized in applied research, which included government, industry and Indigenous organizations. Recently, she and her students have produced participatory video documentaries, including Harvesting Hope, about food sovereignty in northern Manitoba.

• Dr. Bruce Erickson is an assistant professor of geography whose research focuses on the cultural and political dimensions of outdoor leisure, paying attention to how colonialism and nationalism in Canada impact our recreational use of space. His work also documents the impact of gender, race and sexuality on our understandings of nature and space. His current projects address ecotourism in northern Canada, environmental activist campaigns throughout Canada and the United States, and the production of heritage sites in Ontario.

Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences

• Dr. Annemieke Farenhorst is the Prairie region NSERC Chair for Women in Science and Engineering, and is creating new opportunities for women to grow, develop, and provide leadership in the fields of science and engineering. Among these opportunities are outreach programs for Aboriginal Peoples created in collaboration with the leaders of northern communities, including a research training program on water and sanitation security. Her research expertise includes strengthening policies, community-based programs and performance measures that help protect land and water resources in Canada. She has also worked in Central America.

Faculty of Architecture

• Dr. Susan Close is an associate professor whose book Framing Identity: Social Practice of Photography in Canada (1880-1920) addresses how Canadian women at the turn of the 20th century used photography as a social practice to establish identity. She used issues related to identity, gender, post-colonialism, tourism and travel as a way to analyze her subject matter.

Faculty of Engineering

• Civil engineering assistant professor Dr. Qiuyan Yuan aims to develop sustainable technologies for water and waste treatment processes that will reduce the environmental burden, carbon footprint, and greenhouse gas emissions. She is also interested in community outreach to promote environmental awareness. Yuan is involved with research on First Nations water issues.

Faculty of Graduate Studies

• Dr. Nancy Hansen is director of the interdisciplinary master’s program in disability studies. Her University of Glasgow PhD thesis examined the impact of education and social policy on the employment experiences of women with physical disabilities and her post-doctoral research examined the access of women with disabilities to primary health care. Dr. Hansen’s research interests include disability history (eugenics and bioethics), geography of disability, disabled women’s issues, disabled people’s access to primary health care and disability and the media.

Faculty of Kinesiology and Recreation Management

• Dr. Sarah Teetzel is an assistant professor whose research examines equity, justice, and fairness in sport. Her projects include an analysis of the gendered nature of doping research and anti-doping education campaigns and an examination of whether drug testing in sport is a justifiable violation of an athlete’s right to privacy and autonomy.

Faculty of Nursing

• Dr. Benita Cohen‘s research program is focused on building public health capacity to address and reduce inequities in health using a social justice lens. Current research activities include developing indicators for public health organizational capacity for social justice and equity work.

School of Art

• Dr. Shepherd Steiner is assistant professor of contemporary art and theory at the School of Art. He is in dialogue with a wide range of contemporary photographic practices and actively researches the ways in which the interpretative dynamics encountered on the micro level of photography are mediated by larger issues in the political crucible. This research is inclusive of the theoretical notion of teleopoiesis and opens onto the horizon of ethics.


• Dr. Melanie O’Gorman  is a development economist at the University of Winnipeg with experience with fieldwork and policy analysis in a number of developing countries. She is involved in economic analysis for the Centre for Human Rights Research First Nations drinking water project.

OTHER INSTITUTIONS (professional affiliates)

• Dr. Karlee Sapoznik Evans is the Manager of Research, Special Reports, and Youth Engagement for the Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth. Her research, teaching, activism and advocacy have focused on the prevention of human trafficking, forced marriage, sexual exploitation, and slavery; the history and legacies of residential schools; social justice and human rights; the Holocaust, genocide, and memory; the best interests of children and youth; and women’s, gender, and oral history. Evans has worked in Sierra Leone, Mali, Peru, Italy, England, Spain, Ukraine, Israel, and the U.S.

Interested in becoming a research affiliate? Read the members section of our constitution and then email with a bio of less than 100 words that is suitable for posting on this page if you are approved.

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