2023-24 Speakers Series

Title: Drugs, Crime, and Social Disorder: Making sense of recent changes in Edmonton’s inner-city

Speakers: Katharina Maier (University of Winnipeg), Carolyn Greene (University of Athabasca), Marta-Marika Urbanik (University of Alberta)

October 16, 2023, 1:00 - 2:00 pm MDT

Abstract: Like other Canadian municipalities, Edmonton’s downtown has been incresingly challenged by concerns over public drug use, crime, socio-economic decline, and social disorder. These concerns are not without warrant; over the past 18 months, Edmonton—in particular, its downtown—has experienced notable increases in crime, visible drug use, encampments, and social disorder. How can we explain these developments? And how should law enforcement, public health agencies, and society at large respond to them? Drawing upon data from a multi-year, multi-site, comparative study on homelessness and drug use, this talk will explore the complexities of making sense of and responding to these challenges, focused on the situation in downtown Edmonton, while drawing comparisons and connections to other Canadian cities.

Title: Settler Research in Indigenous Country

Speaker: Dr. Vicki Chartrand (Bishop's University)

Date: October 27, 2023
Time: 1:00 - 2:00  pm MDT
Abstract: Community-engaged research is an increasingly popular approach to scholarship in the wake of the Black Lives Matter movement and the era of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI). Within modern research paradigms, however, settler research in Indigenous country remains fraught with invasive and exploitive knowledge extraction. In this talk, Dr. Vicki Chartrand thinks through a different approach to settler research to attend to its more extractive features by using collaborative methods and relationality accountability. Drawing on the Unearthing Justices Project (UJP), Dr. Chartand shares ontological insights into community-engaged scholarship and doing research in a “good way.”

Bio: Dr. Vicki Chartrand is a Mama and Associate Professor in the Sociology Department at Bishop’s University, Québec, the traditional and unceded territory of the Abenaki people, and an Adjunct Professor at the University of Ottawa, Criminology Department. She is the founder and director of the Centre for Justice Exchange (https://justiceexchange.ca/) – a research centre for collaborative and community approaches to justice. She has over 25 years of community-engaged research, collaborating with women and children, Indigenous communities, and people in prison. Pm8wzowinnoak Bishop’s kchi adalagakidimek aoak kzalziwiw8banakii aln8baïkik.

Title: Indictment: The Criminal Justice System on Trial

Speaker: Benjamin Perrin & Petra Schulz (UBC Law)

Date: November 27, 2023
Time: Refreshments from Noon - 12:15 pm, Talk 12:15 pm to 1:30 pm MST
#MeToo. Black Lives Matter. Decriminalize Drugs. No More Stolen Sisters. Stop Stranger Attacks. 
Do we need more cops or something else? Harm reduction or treatment? Tougher sentences or prison abolition? The debate about Canada’s criminal justice system has rarely been so polarized – or so in need of fresh ideas.

Join Benjamin Perrin, a UBC law professor, as he shares the latest research on the challenges facing the criminal justice system and fresh ideas for a new transformative justice vision from his upcoming book Indictment: The Criminal Justice System on Trial (University of Toronto Press, October 2023). Indictment has been hailed as “revolutionary” and named one of Indigo’s Most Anticipated Books of Fall 2023.

Title: What happens on the digital street, stays on the digital street? An examination of provocations, threats, and beefs in the online drill culture in Rotterdam

Speaker: Dr. R.A. (Robert) Roks (Associate Professor of Criminology at the Erasmus School of Law, Erasmus University of Rotterdam)

Date: December 1, 2023
Time: 1:00 pm MST
This is a virtual event.
Since 2019, there have been public concerns in the Netherlands about the growing popularity of drill rap, a subgenre of gangsta rap known for its hyperbolic communication of violence in music videos and other social media uploads. Drawing on a netnographic study on Dutch drill in the Dutch city of Rotterdam, we illustrate how the drillers in our study use social media and rap music videos on YouTube and Instagram to insult, challenge, threaten and try to expose their rivals (or ‘opps’). Moreover, we provide an overview of the different types of beefs and provocations we came across in our research, with a focus on the online-offline dynamics in these conflicts. Our results show that the communication of violence is especially visible in a broader online drill rap culture. However, despite the frequent violent posts and provocative online content, the number of actual offline violent incidents as a result of these online expressions was limited. Much of the violence expressed by the Rotterdam drillers on social media can be seen as performative and geared more towards the communication of a violent and dangerous image, rather than an actual willingness to commit physical violence.

Title: The Maravillas: Gangs, Aging, and Mattering in East Los Angeles

Speaker: Dr. Randol Contreras (UC Riverside)

Date: January 26, 2024
Time: 12:30 pm MST

This is a virtual event.
Abstract: Most gang research focuses on young gang members who use violence and style to attain meaning in the world. Researchers, though, have paid little attention to the plight of aging gang members, who increasingly feel irrelevant and forgotten. Thus, this paper will discuss how old-timer Mexican gang members in East Los Angeles try to matter in relationship to both young gang members and what they consider their territorial space. Their attempts often lead to clashes between themselves and youngsters, and to political stances against newcomers, such as immigrants, in their community.

Title: TBA

Speaker: Dr. Beatrice Jauregui (University of Toronto)

Date: February 23, 2024
Time: 12:30 pm MST

This is a virtual event.

Title: School Violence in America: A Statewide Study on Sources, Consequences, and Policy Responses

Speaker: Dr. Jillian Turanovic (University of Colourado Boulder)

Date: March 28, 2024
Time: 11:00 a.m. - Noon, followed by lunch Noon - 1:00 p.m. MDT

This is a hybrid event
Abstract: School violence has become a defining feature of life in America. Despite increased research and discourse, it remains unclear how to best prevent school violence and mitigate its impacts. In this talk, I will showcase preliminary findings from a large mixed-methods research project, funded by the National Institute of Justice, that seeks to better understand the sources, consequences, and policy responses to violence in American schools. Drawing from over a decade’s worth of data on arrestees, schools, and neighborhoods in Florida, and qualitative interviews with school staff, school resource officers, juvenile justice personnel, and policymakers throughout the state, this study seeks to shed light on: (1) the extent to which the sources of school violence are unique from community violence, (2) the differential impacts of violence on school learning environments, and (3) the effectiveness of policies that have been implemented to address violence in Florida schools.

Title: TBA

Speaker: Dr. Amanda Butler (SFU)

Date: April 26, 2024
Time: 1:00 pm MDT

This is a hybrid event.

Title: TBA

Speaker: Dr. Ojmarrh Mitchell (Irvine)

Date: May 24, 2024
Time: TBD

This is a virtual event.