2017-2018 Executive

President: Michaela Hynie, York University

Michaela HynieDr. Hynie is a cultural psychologist who is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology at York University, and the founder and Director of the York Institute of Health Research’s Program Evaluation Unit. Dr. Hynie is interested in engaged scholarship; working in partnership with students, communities and organizations, both locally and internationally, on research addressing complex social issues. Her work centres on the relationship between different kinds of social connections  (interpersonal relationships, social networks) and resilience in situations of social conflict and displacement, and interventions that can strengthen these relationships in different cultural, political and physical environments. This includes work on culture, migration and health inequities; climate change adaptation and environmental displacement; and social integration of refugees. Dr. Hynie’s work has been funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, Grand Challenges Canada, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Lupina Foundation, and a range of health and human services agencies.

Vice President: Bruno Dupeyron, University of Regina

Bruno DupeyronBruno Dupeyron is an Associate Professor at the Johnson-Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy, University of Regina Campus. His major research interests are border and immigration issues, using political sociology and comparative perspectives. Bruno’s research focuses on two streams: (1) the transformations of cross-border governance in North America and Europe, and (2) the regulation of mobility and security in North America. He is currently working on an international research project, funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC). 

Past President: Idil Atak, Ryerson University, Toronto,Ontario, Canada 

Idil AtakIdil Atak is an Associate Professor and Graduate Program Director in the Department of Criminology, Ryerson University, Toronto. She is a member of the International Association for the Study of Forced Migration’s (IASFM) Executive Committee and a research associate at Hans & Tamar Oppenheimer Chair in Public International Law (McGill University). Her research interests include irregular migration, refugee protection, and international and European human rights law. She is currently conducting a SSHRC-funded research on the intersection of security, irregular migration and asylum. Idil served as a legal expert for the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Ankara, then as deputy to the Permanent Representative of Turkey to the Council of Europe in Strasbourg.

Secretary: Stephanie J. Silverman, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario

StephanieJSilvermanDr. Stephanie J. Silverman holds a Social Sciences and Humanities Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Graduate School of Public and International Affairs, University of Ottawa, and teaches in the Ethics, Society, and Law Program at Trinity College, University of Toronto.  She completed her DPhil in Politics and International Relations at the University of Oxford in 2013, and has previously held a postdoctoral fellowship at Osgoode Hall Law School and a research fellowship at the Refugee Research Network, York University.  She is the co-editor of Immigration Detention: The Migration of a Policy and Its Human Impact (Routledge) as well as the author of book chapters, working papers, policy briefs, and peer-reviewed articles inCRISPP, Forced Migration Review, Politics & Policy, Population, Space and Place, and Refuge.

Treasurer: Graham Hudson, Ryerson University

graham hudsonGraham is an Associate Professor in  the Department of Criminology at Ryerson University. He holds a B.A. (Hons) in History and Philosophy from York University, a J.D. from the University of Toronto, an LL.M. from Queen’s University, and a Ph.D. from Osgoode Hall Law School. Current research includes the sanctuary city movement in Canada, the criminalization of (irregular) migration, and the (quasi-)judicial administration of secret trials in Canada and the UK.

Communications Officer: Petra Molnar

Petra MolnarPetra Molnar is a refugee lawyer and researcher based in Toronto, Canada. She is a former refugee settlement worker who has researched forced migration issues in Canada and internationally, including immigration detention, health and human rights, and gender-based violence. Petra holds a Master of Arts in Social Anthropology from York University and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Toronto Faculty of Law. Petra writes about the discourses that shape the relationship between law, society, and culture and the politics of refugee, immigration, and international human rights law. She is currently working on a book on the Syrian conflict. 

Policy Partnership Officer: Armin Boroumand, University of Montreal

armin-bArmin Boroumand is conducting a Postdoctoral research at Centre de recherche en droit public (CRDP) at University of Montreal. He obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Law from Tehran University and a Master’s degree in International Law from Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran. He holds a Ph.D. degree in Comparative Law from University of Strasbourg, France. He is a member of the Executive Committee of Canadian Association for Refugee and Forced Migration Studies. Mr. Boroumand’s research centers on Children’s rights, European Fundamental Rights (within the framework of European Union and the Council of Europe) and protection of Refugees and Immigrants.

Student Director: 

Jona Zyfi, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario

Jona Zyfi

Jona Zyfi is a doctoral student at the Centre for Criminology & Sociolegal Studies at the University of Toronto working under the supervision of Professor Audrey Macklin. She holds an Honours BA in Criminology with Minors in Ethics and Psychology from Ryerson University and an MA in Criminology from the University of Toronto. Jona’s MA thesis explored the Safe Country of Origin provisions in the EU, and the counterpart Designated Countries of Origin regime in Canada. Her research interests include forced and irregular migration, the criminalization and securitization of asylum seekers, refugee protection and status determination, and the intersections of citizenship, belonging, state sovereignty/power and human rights. She is currently a research assistant for a project examining private refugee sponsorship from sponsor’s perspectives.


Student Affairs Officers:

Alizee BodsonAlizee Bodson, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario

Alizee is a recent graduate from the Diaspora and Transnational Studies and Near Middle-Eastern Civilizations program at the University of Toronto. She is currently living in Istanbul where she is interning at the Association for Solidarity with Asylum Seekers (ASAM), a multi-service centre offering legal advising and psycho-social services for Syrians in Istanbul. In addition to this, she is also interning at the Migration Research Centre at Koc University (MiReKoc) where she is working on a project looking at temporary transnational migration and mobility in the Turkish context. Her own research interests include Turkish asylum policy, international refugee law, transit migration, smuggling and human trafficking. In the fall she will begin studies in the Forced Migration and Refugee Studies program at Oxford. 

Mohammad Azizur Rahman, University of Manitoba

Mohammad Azizur RahmanAzizur Rahman is a PhD student in the Department of Peace and Conflict Studies (PACS) at the University of Manitoba. Mr. Rahman has completed (in four countries – i.e., Bangladesh, Germany, the Philippines, and Canada) an honors degree and three masters degrees in sociology, regional development planning, and criminology. His professional background includes research, consulting and community work. Mr. Rahman’s interests are deepening to view violence against refugees (VAR) from both the human rights and multiculturalism frameworks. These frameworks include the context of rising anti-immigrant rhetoric, as well as negative attitudes toward refugees within immigrant-hosting countries. Mr. Rahman’s multidisciplinary background impels him to examine the refugee integration from the PACS lens. His dissertation thesis intends to explore refugees’ labor market outcomes and the factors associated with the economic integration of refugees in Canada.

Practitioner and Advocacy Officer: Ashley Korn, Manager, Student Refugee Program

Ashley KornAshley Korn is currently the Manager, Student Refugee Program at World University Service of Canada.  Ashley has held several roles since 2007 at the YMCA of Greater Toronto in various new immigrant and refugee settlement programs; most recently as National Manager of the Client Support Services Program, a provincial program that provides case management to Government Assisted Refugees; and the Refugee Youth Program, a youth pre-arrival support program in partnership with the Canadian Orientation Abroad.  Ashley has also been an active contributor to the World University Service of Canada, Student Refugee Program since 2009, providing orientations and integration assistance to refugee students in both Malawi and Canada.  She has assisted International Organization for Migration in Kenya, helping develop the Canadian Orientation Abroad, Refugee Youth Curriculum. Ashley holds a Masters degree in Immigration and Settlement studies from Ryerson University in Toronto, Canada and has contributed to a number of publications related to understanding factors that contribute to effective resettlement and integration of refugee populations, with a focus on youth, and the role of information and the impact on the resettlement experience.

Annual Conference Coordinators:

James Milner

james milnerJames Milner has been a researcher, practitioner and policy advisor on issues relating to refugees, peacebuilding, African politics and the United Nations system. In recent years, he has undertaken field research in Burundi, Guinea, Kenya, India, Tanzania and Thailand, and has presented research findings to stakeholders in New York, Geneva, London, Ottawa, Bangkok, Nairobi, Dar es Salaam and elsewhere. He has worked as a Consultant for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in India, Cameroon, Guinea and its Geneva Headquarters. He is author of Refugees, the State and the Politics of Asylum in Africa (Palgrave Macmillan, 2009), co-author (with Alexander Betts and Gil Loescher) of UNHCR: The Politics and Practice of Refugee Protection (Routledge, 2012), and co-editor of Protracted Refugee Situations: Political, Human Rights and Security Implications (UN University Press, 2008). Before joining Carleton, he was a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellow at the Munk Centre for International Studies, University of Toronto (2006-08) and a Trudeau Scholar at the University of Oxford (2003-06).

Jay Ramasubramanyam

Jay RamasubramanyamJay Ramasubramanyam is a doctoral candidate in Carleton University’s Department of Law and Legal Studies, with a specialization in Political Economy. His doctoral work identifies the gaps in capacity in the current frameworks of refugee protection by exploring emerging crises and drivers that have led to increasing displacement in the Global South, more specifically in South Asia. His research will explore factors such as environmental change, resource shortages, economic deprivation, state fragility, and other humanitarian crises in his research. He is a recent recipient of the Humanitarian Response Network’s research grant that supports graduate research.

Jay earned a BA in Criminology from New Zealand and an LLM in International Human Rights Law from the United Kingdom, prior to being employed by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in New Delhi as a Refugee Status Determination Associate and in the New Delhi mission of the International Committee of the Red Cross as a Protection Field Officer. In 2010, he had a brief stint as a Law Clerk at the American Bar Association in Washington D.C. working with the Death Penalty Moratorium Implementation Project. His areas of interest encompass forced migration, refugee policy, statelessness, human rights and environmental justice.

Directors at Large:

James C. Simeon, York University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

James C. SimeonDr. James C. Simeon is an Associate Professor in the School of Public Policy and Administration (SPPA), Faculty of Liberal Arts and Professional Studies, York University, Toronto, Canada. He is a past-President of CARFMS and currently serves as a  Member-at-Large on the Executive of the Canadian Association for Refugee and Forced Migration Studies (CARFMS), with the lead for the Online Research and Teaching Tool & Practitioners Forum (ORTT&PF) —  see . He is an Associate Member of the International Association of Refugee Law Judges’ (IARLJ) and serves as the Coordinator of its Inter-Conference Working Party Process. His primary areas of research are international refugee law, international humanitarian law, international criminal law, and public policy and public administration. He has published widely in these areas of research and he has organized and led many highly successful academic and professional conferences, symposia, and workshops. Before joining the faculty at York University he served as the IARLJ’s first Executive Director and prior to that he was a Member and Coordinating Member of the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB). For further information, please see his personal website.

Morgan PoteetMorgan Poteet, Mount Allison University, Sackville, New Brunswick

Dr. Poteet’s current research includes: settlement for male youth of Central American background in Toronto; integration of international students in the Atlantic region of Canada; and representations of Canadian immigration and national identity at Pier 21. Poteet has taught courses on immigration, settlement, refugees, racialization, population, and globalization and transnationalism since 2005, and presently holds a position of Assistant Professor in the Sociology Department at Mt. Allison University in Sackville, New Brunswick, Canada.

Stephanie Stobbe, University of Winnipeg, Winnipeg, Manitoba

Stephanie StobbeStephanie Stobbe, an Associate Professor in Conflict Resolution Studies, is a leading expert on Southeast Asian processes of dispute resolution. As an active educator, trainer, and ADR practitioner with a Ph.D. in Peace and Conflict Studies, she has worked and conducted research in Canada, United States, South America, Lithuania, India, and Southeast Asia. In 2006, she was invited to work with local citizens in the development of the first peace program in Laos. Between 2007 and 2009 she completed research on traditional mediation and conflict resolution rituals in three provinces in Laos. In 2013, she co-facilitated a series of seminars and workshops for political leaders in Myanmar (Burma) on institutional designs in conflict resolution, peacebuilding, and reconciliation as the country transitions to democratic governance.

In 2011 Stephanie co-edited a book, Critical Aspects of Gender in Conflict Resolution, Peacebuilding, and Social Movements (2011) for Emerald Publishing’s series on Research in Social Movements, Conflicts and Change. Her work on the subject of Gender and Conflict Resolution was recognized in 2012 when she was invited to join the American Bar Association team of experts to discuss “Gender-Responsive Peacebuilding: Implementing the Secretary-General’s Report on Women’s Participation in Peacebuilding,” and provide recommendations to the United Nations Development Programme, Peacebuilding Support Office as they address UN Security Council Resolutions 1325 and 1889. In that same year, she also served as a Visiting Professor/Researcher at the Matsunaga Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution at the University of Hawaii. Her current research projects include Experiences of Professional Immigrants in Canada’s Labour Market: A Study of the Past 25 Years; and Transnational Histories of Homeland, Violence, and Migration: Intergenerational and Digital Storytelling Among Refugees in the Diaspora, 1945 to the Present. Her new book, Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding in Laos: Perspective for Today’s World, was released in 2015.

Helen Lansdowne, University of Victoria

Helen LansdowneHelen Lansdowne (BA, MA Asian Studies Uvic)  has been with the Centre for Asia-Pacific Initiatives since 1998.  She bring expertise in rural China state-society relations and the gendered development of Southeast Asia.  Most recently Helen has expanded her academic pursuits to include migration within and out from the Asia Pacific region.


CRS Coordinator: Michele Millard
Centre for Refugee Studies, York University
8th Floor, Kaneff Tower
4700 Keele Street
Toronto, Ontario  M3J 2P3