Spring 2021 Speakers Series

POLI SPEAKERS SERIES SPRING 2021

Tuesday, January 26, 2:30 pm
Matt James, University of Victoria
"The Historical Justice Dilemma and Assigning Responsibility in the TRC Report"
Online via Zoom. Register here

Although critical memory is an indispensable tool of accountability, efforts to use it are often hampered by the unjust relations and systems that caused the wrongs that historical justice needs to address. In the case at hand, colonial power relations shaped the mandate and fettered the work of the Canadian TRC, leaving key deficiencies. For example, this article exposes and analyzes the unfortunate fact that relatively benign depictions of the agency of Canadian public officials in relation to residential schooling outweigh more negative ones in the report’s key postwar history volume. But criticism is not this article’s major focus. Instead, it works with the postwar history volume, reading closely its different instances, modes, topics, and levels of individual agency, and showing thereby how we can work with the volume to enhance its potential as a resource of social accountability.



Tuesday, February 2, 2:30 pm
Arjen Boin, Leiden University,
"Learning from COVID-19: The Dutch experience"
Online via Zoom. Register here

Like many other countries, the Dutch were utterly surprised when the first wave washed over the Netherlands. The state of preparation, the capacity to effectively improvise, the working relation with experts - all aspects of the national crisis response proved very challenging. Yet, like most other countries, the crisis was brought under control within two months. Then the second wave came. Political authorities and experts were surprised, once again. The Netherlands is living through its second lockdown, which is more stringent and longer lasting than the first one. The Dutch experience prompts questions that are relevant for every western country. How to motivate citizens to make sacrifices for a long period of time? How to ramp up the national crisis management structure, while bringing lower levels of governance along? How to make sense of a creeping crisis such as COVID-19? How can governments learn from these epochal events?



Tuesday, March 2, 2:30 pm
Stefan Dolgert, Brock University,
"Afrofuturist Plato: Sun Ra, Janelle Monáe and the Odyssey of an Alien Soul on a Carceral Planet"



Tuesday, March 30, 2:30 pm

Dennis Zagermann, University of Victoria,
"Economic and Political Reform in the European Union: How and Why the European Stability Mechanism Matters for Euro Member States in Crisis"

Abstract: The European Stability Mechanism (ESM), as a permanent institutional choice, was a key response to the crisis of the euro area. On an intergovernmental basis, it provides financial support to member states in severe fiscal stress. However, financial assistance comes with strict policy conditionality. While there are strong social and economic differences between the programme countries, their financial assistance programmes focused on very similar reform objective. Hence, what long-term implications does the ESM entail for socio-economic diversity in the euro area?

Dennis Zagermann is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Victoria’s (UVic) EUROSEM Jean Monnet network. Dennis Zagermann has defended his PhD project on "Economic and Political Reform in the European Union: How and Why the European Stability Mechanism Matters for Euro Member States in Crisis" at the University of Bremen in 2020. His research focuses on European integration and comparative political economy, with a specific focus on labour markets and industrial relations. Dennis Zagermann holds a BA in Political Science and Comparative Literature from the University of Bielefeld and an MA in Political Science from the University of Bremen.


Tuesday, April 20, 2:30 pm
Celina Caesar-Chavannes
Speaking on her book, Can You Hear Me Now?

In Can You Hear Me Now?, Celina Caesar-Chavannes digs deep into her childhood and her life as a young Black woman entrepreneur and politician, and shows us that effective and humane leaders grow as much from their mistakes and vulnerabilities as from their strengths. More info: Can You Hear Me Now? by Celina Caesar-Chavannes | Penguin Random House Canada

Celina Caesar-Chavannes is a business consultant, coach and international speaker. She currently serves as the Sr. Advisor, EDI Initiatives and Adjunct Lecturer at Queen’s University and her forthcoming book, Can You Hear Me Now? published by Penguin Random House Canada, will be available on February 02, 2021. She was the former Member of Parliament for Whitby, Parliamentary Secretary to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Parliamentary Secretary for International Development. During her term as an MP, Celina was awarded several distinctions including a feature in the April 2018 edition of O (Oprah Winfrey) Magazine entitled, "What would you stand up for?" and named Chatelaine Magazine’s Woman of the Year (2019). She has a Bachelor of Science, an MBA in Healthcare Management and an Executive MBA from the Rotman School of Management. She can be followed on all social media platforms @iamcelinacc.