A transdisciplinary space for social justice at Congress 2014

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Rachel Hirsch, Projects Facilitator, Social Justice Research Institute, Brock University
Jeffrey Sinibaldi, Media Relations Manager, Marketing and Communications, Brock University

At Congress 2014, Brock’s Social Justice Research Institute (SJRI) will be creating a transdisciplinary space to foster dialogue and galvanize colleagues from the social sciences and humanities around themes of social justice.

A key priority for the newly created institute is to break down boundaries and connect the threads of social justice scholarship taking place across various disciplines. To do this at Congress, SJRI is helping to promote the social justice events of 21 academic and community organizations, including co-sponsoring 11 high profile events.

SJRI was established Fall 2013 as a leader in advanced transdisciplinary social justice scholarship, innovative knowledge mobilization strategies, and community-university partnerships. SJRI is a vibrant collective of 47 faculty members from 15 Departments and Centres at Brock University brought together by a shared concern for pressing social justice issues.

The institute represents a new organizational model for thematic and transdisciplinary research in social justice in an academic setting. It aims to connect the dots between disciplines without having one true “home” association.

The creation of transdisciplinary knowledge in social justice is driven by a collective recognition of local and global injustices, and a desire to understand and respond to these injustices. This work is provoked by social problems rather than research questions arising from disciplinary debates.

A key event at Congress 2014 that Brock’s Social Justice Research Institute had a hand in helping to organize and promote, includes:

Documentary film-making meets social justice: A feminist journey
Thursday, May 29, 2014, 3:30 p.m., Thistle 325, Brock University

In this public keynote lecture, Kum-Kum Bhavnani from the University of California discusses the making of her two award-winning films (The Shape of Water and Nothing like Chocolate), how they work to dissolve boundaries between scholarly and public understandings, as well as how they attempt to “speed up processes of social justice.”


For more information about SJRI’s Congress activities and events, please visit:


Congress of the Humanities and Social SciencesCongress 2014