CRS Seminar: ‘Achieving Uptake’: From Policy Practice Relevant Research to Real World Impact @ 519 Kaneff Tower
Jan 24 @ 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM

Guest Speaker: Dr. Joanna Anneke Rummens

How exactly can research help directly inform policy and practice?

In this presentation, the Centre for Refugee Studies’ Visiting Scholar of Practice in Residence, Dr. Joanna Anneke Rummens, shares practical how-to principles and strategies for undertaking policy practice relevant research to address pressing social issues and knowledge gaps.

Focus is placed on the trajectory from knowledge exchange, through translation and transfer, to actual uptake, implementation and impact evaluation, with reference to both implementation research per se and the newly emerging field of implementation science in health care research.  

Illustrative examples are drawn and key research findings shared from her own programme of integrated research & knowledge transfer on health status and access to care of diverse medically uninsured newcomer immigrant | refugee | migrant populations which culminated in the provision of scientific evidence as invited Expert Affiant in Canada’s Federal Court and Court of Appeal that contributed to changes in governmental policy and professional practice. 

The Centre for Refugee Studies’ Visiting Scholar of Practice in Residence, Dr. Joanna Anneke Rummens, is an applied researcher, knowledge mobilizer and consultant who works directly with diverse communities, front-line practitioners, professionals and key decision makers within the immigration, health and education sectors at the local, municipal, provincial, federal and international levels.  


Dr. Joanna Anneke Rummens

Visiting Scholar of Practice in Residence, Centre for Refugee Studies, York University

Senior Advisor, Strategic Initiatives and Partnerships

Ted Rogers School of Management’s Diversity Institute, Ryerson University

Associate Professor in Equity, Gender and Population | Child and Youth Mental Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto

CRS Seminar: Book Launch: “Running on Empty: Canada and the Indochinese Refugees, 1975-1980” @ 519 Kaneff Tower
Feb 5 @ 11:30 AM – 1:00 PM

Guest Speaker: Michael J. Molloy

The fall of Saigon in April 1975, resulted in the largest refugee resettlement effort in Canada’s history. Running on Empty describes the actions of a few dozen men and women who travelled to seventy remote refugee camps in order to resettle thousands displaced by war and oppression. This volume presents first-hand accounts of the officials tasked with selecting refugees, receiving and matching them with sponsors and helping integrate the newcomers in communities across Canada. Running on Empty offers lessons for governments, organizations, and individuals trying to come to grips with refugee crises in the twenty-first century.


Michael J. Molloy, Canada’s former Ambassador to Jordan, was involved in refugee affairs throughout his career. He led implementation of the refugee provisions of the 1976 Immigration Act including the private refugee sponsorship program. He coordinated the resettlement of 60,000 Indochinese refugees in 1979/80. He was involved in the Czechoslovakian and Ugandan Asian refugee movements. He is president of the Canadian Immigration Historical Society and Honorary Senior Fellow at the University of Ottawa’s Graduate School of Public and International Affairs.

Peter Duschinsky was a Hungarian refugee to Canada in 1957 and is a retired Canadian foreign service officer. He managed the Ethiopian refugee movement from Sudan to Canada in the early 1980s. As director of International Liaison in the late 1980s he coordinated Canada’s relations on migration and refugee issues with multilateral organisations, including the UNHCR and the EU.


CRS Seminar: Refugee resettlement in the UK: language learning, intergroup contact, and well-being @ 626 Kaneff Tower
Feb 7 @ 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM

Guest Speakers:

Linda Tip, Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Brighton (UK)

Linda Morrice, Senior Lecturer in Education at the University of Sussex (UK)

Learning the language of the country of resettlement is not only at the heart of refugee integration strategies, but in the highly charged political climate of immigration, English language has become a focal point for debates about migrants ‘failing to integrate’. This talk will draw on ESRC funded research with 280 refugees who were resettled to the UK prior to 2010. The research confirms English language proficiency as pivotal to tangible markers of integration, such as employment, health and access to education, and overall sense of well-being. However, it also shows that resettled refugees are a hyper-diverse group and that age, gender and inequalities of education experienced in the country of origin are reproduced in the transition to highly literate and literacy dependent contexts like the UK.

Out of 280 refugee participants, 180 were followed over the course of two years, allowing for longitudinal analyses which gave us insight in the temporal order of relationships between language, intergroup contact, and well-being. Cross-lagged path modelling confirmed that improving majority language proficiency might be the key to better well-being of refugees, with intergroup contact being the mediator between language and well-being. That is, earlier English language competence was positively associated with later intergroup contact; the reverse associations (from earlier contact to later language competence) were not reliable. In turn, intergroup contact at earlier time points was associated with increased well-being at later time points (but not the reverse). 

The findings highlight how conflicting policy goals, and the failure of policy to recognise the specific challenges facing refugees, undermine attempts to learn the language, and serve to perpetuate social disadvantage and marginalisation. In addition, the results show that policies assuming that once in employment, there is no longer a need to learn the language, are likely to be misplaced. Consequently, the promise of resettlement and the accompanying rights of participation are not fulfilled, and public fears over migrants’ abilities to speak English and demonstrate willingness to integrate will remain.


Linda Morrice is a Senior Lecturer in Education at the University of Sussex (UK). Her research interests sit at the intersection of education (informal and formal) with refugee and migration studies. She has a particular interest in everyday pedagogies and inter-cultural dimensions of learning, identities and social practices such as citizenship and cultural values.

Linda Tip is a Social Psychologist who explores issues surrounding integration and well-being of refugees and other minority groups from a multidisciplinary and policy-focused perspective. This includes investigating relationships between people of different ethnic or religious backgrounds, and the link between these relationships and well-being. She is currently a Research Fellow at the University of Sussex (UK), but will be a Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Brighton (UK) as of March 2017.

Both Lindas work together on a UK Research Council funded project – Optimising refugee resettlement in the UK: a comparative analysis (2014-2018).  The project is longitudinal and combines quantitative and qualitative methods to explore the experiences and outcomes for refugees who were resettled to the UK prior to 2010. The research is multidisciplinary with Mike Collyer (Geography) and Rupert Brown (Psychology). See:

CRS Film Screening: Ai Weiwei’s “Human Flow” @ Nick Mirkopolous Screening Room ACE 004
Feb 14 @ 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM

Join us for a screening of Chinese artist Ai Weiwei’s powerful documentary on the refugee crisis

Human Flow.png

Human Flow


You can view the trailer here:

CRS Seminar: Extractive Moralities?: The Impact of the Refugee Boom in the Republic of Nauru @ 626 Kaneff Tower
Mar 7 @ 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM

In the wake of more refugee flows and the political potency of economic migrant scares,  governments have brokered trade deals to extend the geographies of asylum to new sites far beyond their borders. Drawing on 15 months of fieldwork conducted between Geneva, Australia, Fiji, and the Republic of Nauru, this paper follows a supply chain in refugees through to its grounded operations, drawing attention to a new site of commodification: the human as refugee. 

Julia Morris is the Post-doctoral Fellow at the New School’s Zolberg Institute on Migration and Mobility. She is a political anthropologist whose research focuses on global migration governance. Her doctoral research at the University of Oxford examined the outsourcing of asylum processes to new localities, bringing resource extractive sectors into dialogue. She has published in Global Networks and with Routledge publication house on immigration and border control and global knowledge networks.

CRS Seminar: Humanitarian health research: Bridging academy and emergency @ 519 Kaneff Tower
Mar 21 @ 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM

Guest Speaker: Dr. Syed Imran Ali

In this seminar, Dr. Ali will talk about the breadth of technical and operational knowledge gaps in the humanitarian sector, their origins and why they persist, and the role of academic-humanitarian collaborations in improving the health and well-being of vulnerable populations.

Syed Imran Ali, Ph.D.
Fellow in Global Health and Humanitarianism,
Dahdaleh Institute for Global Health Research,
York University

Dr. Ali is an aid worker and academic focused on humanitarian challenges at the intersection of environment and public health. He has worked in multiple emergencies and led operational research with Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). Dr. Ali has taught at the University of California, Berkeley, where he held a Development Impact Lab postdoctoral fellowship. Dr. Ali received his doctorate in environmental engineering from the University of Guelph and his bachelors in engineering from Queen’s University.