The paper reflects on a changing public service project regarding women and intersectional analysis in Halifax, Canada. The project sought to facilitate collective mobilizations to challenge austerity and to imagine public services that meet the needs of the citizens who use them, and the workers that provide them. We provide an overview of the project, and then explore our attempt at adapting “multistrand” intersectional policy analysis (Hankivsky & Cormier, 2011) to a community-based context. In considering the challenges and opportunities associated with this work, the paper concludes that the changing public service project created space for an innovative approach to community-based research that can guide both participatory policy analysis and collective action.
Within the context of an increasing interest in forms of work-integrated learning (WIL) among governments and institutions of higher education, this essay explores the relation between WIL and community-engaged learning (CEL) in order to argue that the structural and self-critique apparent in much CEL scholarship can serve as a model to WIL scholars and practitioners. CEL has undergone a rigorous process of self-examination in recent years, a process that has encouraged its advocates to think carefully about their core assumptions, appropriate learning objectives, and best practices in the field. In this way, we argue, whether or not CEL is classified as a form of WIL, it can serve to defamiliarize many of WIL’s assumptions and to invite self-reflection in the field as a whole. In the first half of the essay, we provide background for the conversation, first in the Canadian context, and then in the broader scholarship of CEL. In the second half, we offer three case studies that illustrate both the distinctive characteristics of CEL and, in the last case, how these characteristics might strengthen the practice of traditional WIL.
This essay reviews challenges posed to community-engaged scholars regarding tenure/promotion processes in Canadian universities, with a note to characteristics of community-engaged scholarship that were developed by Catherine Jordan (2007) to address gaps in academic assessment of engaged scholarship. These characteristics are: clear goals, adequate preparation, appropriate methods: scientific rigor and community engagement, significant results/impact, effective presentation/dissemination, reflective critique, leadership and personal contribution, and consistently ethical behavior. These are then applied to a non-peer reviewed work that describes the cumulative effects of environmental change for people in the Slave River Delta Region of the North West Territories, Canada. The reader is asked to view Delta Ways Remembered, a 13-minute video employing an enhanced e-storytelling technique to share and disseminate traditional knowledge about the delta from a compendium of people as a single-voiced narrative. The purpose is to highlight the scholarship underlying non-traditional academic expositions not readily assessed under current paradigms of academic evaluation. This essay strives to illustrate how Jordan’s characteristics can be applied to evaluate non-peer reviewed scholarly work, and also to share rewards and challenges associated with the harmonious blending of Indigenous and western knowledge addressing societal/environmental issues identified by the Indigenous community.
In the Exchanges, we present conversations with scholars and practitioners of community engagement, responses to previously published material, and other reflections on various aspects of community-engaged scholarship meant to provoke further dialogue and discussion. In this section, we invite our readers to offer their thoughts and ideas on the meanings and understandings of engaged scholarship, as practiced in local or faraway communities, diverse cultural settings, and in various disciplinary contexts. We especially welcome community-based scholars’ views and opinions on their collaborations with university-based partners in particular and engaged scholarship in general.
In this issue, we profile the perspectives of young scholars. Here we feature a conversation between Penelope Sanz, who recently obtained her Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Studies from the University of Saskatchewan and who serves as the Journal’s pioneering managing assistant, and Jayne Malenfant, a 2018 Pierre Elliott Trudeau Scholar, Vanier Scholar, and Ph.D. Candidate at McGill University in the Department of Integrated Studies in Education. A young engaged scholar working with the homeless in Montreal, Jayne talks about her on-going study on how homelessness impacts young people’s education. She looks at the challenges of accessing educational institutional support, an issue, she says, close to her heart as she was once a homeless youth herself. She reflects on the need for academia to open more spaces for young researchers undertaking engaged scholarship to involve the homeless youths themselves in the search for solutions.
In her book, Rebecca K. Jager compares and contrasts the lives and legends of three Indigenous North American women: Malinche, Pocahontas, and Sacagawea. Jager’s research answers an earlier call by Native-American historian and feminist scholar Clara Sue Kidwell in her 1992 Ethnohistory article, “Indian Women as Cultural Intermediaries,” to revisit these stories from a non-Eurocentric perspective.