Social Justice Research Institute appoints first director

Mary Breunig

Mary Breunig

The Social Justice Research Institute (SJRI) at Brock University has announced the appointment of Mary Breunig as its first director. An associate professor in the Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies and President of the Association of Experiential Education, Breunig brings to the Institute a wealth of research and leadership experience and a passion for social justice issues.

Breunig will be assisted in her new role by the SJRI’s Faculty Steering Committee.

Current members (2012-14) are: David Butz (Geography), Janet Conway (Sociology), June Corman (Sociology), Keri Cronin (Visual Arts), Andrea Doucet (Sociology/Women’s Studies), Rebecca Raby (Child and Youth Studies) and Larry Savage (Labour Studies).

The Social Justice Research Institute Faculty Steering Committee (May 2013)

The Social Justice Research Institute Faculty Steering Committee (May 2013)

For the past academic year, Janet Conway has served as chair of the Faculty Steering Committee, and Jodie Harrison has worked as a research assistant to the committee. Mary-Beth Raddon, the new director of Social Justice and Equity Studies grad program, has also recently joined the Faculty Steering Committee. SJRI is also made up of more than 40 faculty members and will be announcing a call for new members in the fall.

The Social Justice Research Institute brings together researchers and students from a wide variety of disciplines to produce socially relevant and community-based scholarship on social justice issues and to create connections with community organizations. SJRI builds on a strong tradition of social justice research and teaching at Brock University. It aims to establish the university as a Canadian and international leader in transdisciplinary social justice scholarship and community-university partnerships for the betterment of society in Niagara and beyond.

Read more stories in: Briefs
Tagged with: ,

2 comments on “Social Justice Research Institute appoints first director”

  1. The BUG says:

    What’s the difference between “Social Justice” and “Justice” ?

  2. Richard Mitchell says:

    Good question – here’s one point of view.

    To achieve what the term ‘justice’ implies in a social democratic system such as ours often costs money – and often more than average people can afford.

    ‘Social Justice’ has to do with being treated fairly in systems that serve people – in child welfare, schools, public spaces, hospitals, banks, stores, for example as well as in all other public services and our courts. In the preface for ‘Principles of Social Justice’ author David Miller (1999, Harvard University Press) tells us ‘social justice is an idea that is central to the politics of contemporary democracies’. However critical pedagogues argue that the issue of how power is distributed and wielded within and beyond institutions can tell us more about the dimensions of social justice, and how those being discriminated against may be treated differently. This approach towards critical pedagogy…

    …signals how questions of audience, voice, power, and evaluation
    actively work to construct particular relations between teachers and
    students, institutions and society, and classrooms and
    communities…. Pedagogy in the critical sense illuminates the
    relationship among knowledge, authority, and power (Giroux, 1994: 30,
    Disturbing pleasures: Learning popular culture. New York/Routledge).

    At risk of over-simplifying the answer in a word, ‘fairness’ is central to social justice. That would be for all people regardless of gender, age, ability, sexual identities, ethnicity or cultural affiliation[s].

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *