Professor Listing


Lois Harder, PhD

Professor and Principal, Peter Lougheed Leadership College


Political Science

About Me

Primarily focusing on Canada, I research and teach in the areas of citizenship law, social policy and the regulation of intimate life. My abiding research question is “Why/how does sex matter to the state?” I have explored that question with regard to the legal recognition of non-conjugal relationships (eg. “The State and the Friendships of the Nation” Signs); parental standing and status (“Parentage Law in Canada” International Journal of Law, Policy and the Family), and most recently the relationship between the formal rules of citizenship and the legal determination of parentage (“Does sperm have a flag? Canadian Journal of Law and Society). I am currently working on a book examining Canada’s citizenship laws, the Lost Canadians and the complexities of birthright citizenship. For more, see 

I have held a number of administrative positions at the University of Alberta, including Associate Dean Research (Arts), Department Chair (Political Science) and I am currently serving as the Principal of the Peter Lougheed Leadership College.

I am happy to supervise students working on citizenship, national identity, intersectional subjectivity (gender, race, class, sexuality), critical social policy analysis, kinship and the family, feminist political economy and law and society. 


Recent Publications include:

Lois Harder and Steve Patten eds. Patriation and Its Aftermath: Politics, Law and the Constitution in Canada. Vancouver: UBC Press. 2015.

Lois Harder, "Does Sperm Have a Flag? On Biological Relationship and National Membership" Canadian Journal of Law and Society 30.1(2015): 109-125.

With Lyubov Zhyznomirska, “Claims of Belonging: Recent Tales of Trouble in Canadian Citizenship” Ethnicities 12.3(June 2012): 293-316.

With Michelle Thomarat, “Parentage Law in Canada: The Numbers Game of Standing and Status” International Journal of Law, Policy and the Family 26.1 (April 2012): 62-87.

“In Canada of All Places: National Belonging and the Lost Canadians” Citizenship Studies 14.2(March 2010): 203-220. 

“The State and the Friendships of the Nation: the Case of Non-Conjugal Relationships in Canada and the United States” Signs. 34.3(2009): 633-658.