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Fall 2013 Seminar Series

CIDEC Seminar Series Schedule Fall 2013

Program includes: Vandra Masemann (OISE), Stephen Anderson (OISE), Liuxin Yang (Univerrsity of Beijing), Mario Uribe of Fundacion Chile, Mehmet Durmus, Bronwen Mcgrath,  and others.

Dates and times of seminars subject to change; please check back or confrim with CIDE administrator at cidec.oise@utoronto.ca.

Monday November 25, 2013, 4:30-6:00 pm (Room 7-105)

Speaker: Rakhat Zholdosieva, PhD Candidate, OISE

Topic: Rural youth in changing conditions of economy, learning and education in post-Soviet Kyrgyzstan

Abstract:  This doctoral research investigates how Kyrgyz rural youth and their families perceive and experience the changing conditions of formal secondary and higher education and employment opportunities in post-Soviet Kyrgyzstan. It is an ethnography-informed qualitative research that included six-month fieldwork with thirty-six (36) high school students in grades 9, 10 and 11 representing diverse social and individual backgrounds in a rural mono-ethnic Kyrgyz community in one of the southern regions of Kyrgyzstan. Employing the concepts of habitus, capital, and social fields in particular and influenced by Bourdieu’s approach to historical and social analysis of transformation and reproduction in general, this study provides further explanations of educational and economic opportunities in post-socialist conditions documenting specific post-Soviet changes as well as the Soviet continuities.

Bio: Rakhat Zholdoshalieva, EDD Candidate (HSSSJE) is also enrolled in OISE-CIDE program specializing in comparative, international and development education. Rakhat has been a research assistant to the five-year long Anti-Poverty Community Organizing and Learning (APCOL) Project coordinated by Dr. Peter Sawchuk of the LHAE Department at OISE. She has mainly worked with the APCOL team in designing, piloting, collecting and analyzing survey data from eight neighbourhoods in the GTA to examine (past/non)activist histories, learning and organizing around poverty issues.


Wednesday November 20, 2013, 11:30 am-1:00 pm (Room 7-105)

Speaker: Tasneem Saddiqui, MPA (Harvard), from Pakistan

Topic: Why the improvement of the public-sector system should be the main answer to Pakistan’s education needs

This talk will touch on the various other options such as privatized school system, ‘madrassa’ systems, other programs which have been tried such as "adopt a school programs" and then discuss why the improvements to the public sector system should be the main answer to education reform in Pakistan. These reasons include the State's ability to provide equal and non-profit driven access to quality education and limitations of the non-public sector alternatives in their ability to replace the state in providing for large scale social services such as education.

Bio: Mr. Tasneem Siddiqui joined the erstwhile Civil Service of Pakistan in 1965 and rose to become Chief Secretary Government of Sindh, before his retirement. Mr. Siddiqui received a Masters in Political Science from University of Sindh in 1964 and a Masters in Public Administration from Harvard University in 1984. Working as Director General, Hyderabad Development Authority, Mr. Siddiqui developed an interest in housing for low-income groups. More recently he has been involved with the Bookgroup NGO in a pilot-project focusing on modernizing 85 public schools in Punjab. He is a prolific writer, and has written on subjects which include: process of social change; imperatives for land reforms in Pakistan; reasons for hyper-urbanization in developing countries; dynamics of bureaucratic rule, and analyses of development strategies adopted by different countries.


November 13, 2013 4:30-6:00 pm (Room 7-105)

Topic: On Classical Confucian Philosophy of Education in “Xueji

Speaker: Liuxin Yang, University of Beijing, Visiting Scholar, CTL

Xueji” is the earliest Chinese classical text that makes special expounding on questions of education. This paper probes into the philosophy of education of classical Confucianism and explores its modern value. There is a holistic logic structure in the philosophy of education. “Xue”(学learning) and “jiao”(教teaching) are two central concepts of this structure. “Xue” (学) reflects the unity of “self-cultivation” and the “dao”(道) of “great learning”. The intention of “xue” (学) is not only for knowing “dao” (道) but also for creating kingdoms and governing people, and for improving society and cultivating the finer social customs. “Jiao”(教) covers the educational institutions of “liyue”( 礼乐ritual and music)culture, the pedagogy methodology of teaching-learning interaction, and a special educational ethics of teacher-respecting and the “dao” (道) belief. This paper holds that today’s and tomorrow’s education can find insights from the classical Confucian philosophy of education.

Bio: Yang Liuxin has been an associate Professor of the Institute of Moral Education in Peking University, China, since 2005. He took his PhD at Peking University in 2001.His principal research interest is in the Chinese classical ethics and moral education.His current main project is on global citizenship education. Currently, he is a visiting scholar in OISE.


Wednesday November 8, 2013, 12 noon -1:30 pm (Room 7-105)

Topic: Working to Improve Maternal and Child Health

Speakers: Umaira Ansari, IDRC and Sisawo Konteh, AKHS

AKFC started its University Seminar Series in 2001 by bringing international development practitioners from its partner projects in Asia and Africa to universities across Canada. The goal: to engage students from all fields of study in discussions and workshops on key development issues, providing them with an opportunity to gain a practical understanding of the challenges involved in designing and implementing projects in the field. By increasing their awareness of their role as “global citizens,” AKFC hopes to help bridge the divide between the developed and developing worlds.
Building on the success of this series, IDRC and AKFC are collaborating to expand its reach and impact across Canada. The focus this year is on maternal and child health.  According to United Nations’ estimates, in 2010, some 800 women died every day from complications of pregnancy or childbirth, 99% of them in developing countries. Some 7.6 million children died before the age of five. While these numbers are high, they are a considerable improvement since countries committed in 2000 to the Millennium Development Goals, a set of ambitious development targets for 2015.

Umaira Ansari is Research Associate and Communications Coordinator for the Nigerian Evidence-based Health System Initiative (NEHSI), under the Community Information Empowerment and Transparency (CIET) Trust. This project seeks to improve health information and planning systems by focusing on health outcomes rather than on service provision. Umaira grew up in Pakistan, and before joining CIET, worked for the disadvantaged in her country – especially in the field of women’s rights. Umaira holds a degree in law and legislature.

Sisawo Konteh is the Director of Outreach Services for Aga Khan Health Services, Tanzania (AKHST). He also serves as Project Director for a DFATD-funded project that focuses on community-based maternal, newborn, and child health services. Before joining AKHST, Sisawo spent many years in senior health-leadership positions in Afghanistan and The Gambia. Sisawo completed his undergraduate studies in nursing & midwifery from Gambia College and holds a master’s degree in hospital management from Leeds University in the UK.


Thursday October 31, 2013  11:30-1:00 pm (Room 7-105)

Topic: The Ecology of Transformation: A Relational Study of the Ecology of Leadership Program at the Regenerative Design Institute

Speaker: Katia Sol Madjidi is a PhD candidate in Leadership, Higher and Adult Education at OISE-University of Toronto. 

Abstract:  Humanity is passing through a time of great transition, an unprecedented convergence of immense global crisis and historic opportunity, or "Great Turning". Foundational to this shift and critical to our survival and prosperity as a global community will be the speed and depth with which humanity is able to transform our ways of relating with our selves, one another and the earth. In this presentation, CIDE PhD Candidate Katia Sol Madjidi will discuss her doctoral research on the Ecology of Leadership program at the Regenerative Design Institute as an example of a model of adult education that aims to cultivate both individual and collective transformative learning for the Great Turning.  She will also discuss her use of a "relational" methodology, which incorporates Indigenous and ecological principles to inform an engaged and collaborative research process.  Session will include experiential activities to illuminate the research.   

Katia Sol has PhD specializations in Comparative, International and Development Education and the Dynamics of Global Change.  Katia has spent the last 18 years facilitating leadership, community development, and transformative educational programs in more than 30 countries and with several First Nations around the world. An award-winning scholar and writer, she led the development of Ghost River Rediscovery’s International Youth Leadership Program and is a current co-facilitator of the Ecology of Leadership program at the Regenerative Design Institute. Read more about her here: www.katiasol.com


Wednesday October 2, 2013  12 noon- 1:30 pm (Room 7-105)

Topic: The role of principals as agents of school improvement in Chilean Schools

Speaker: Mario Uribe, History Teacher, Ed.M., Director of Leadership & School Management Program at Fundación Chile. Research Associate, Center for Research on Educational Policy and Practice (CEPPE) (translated by Stephen Anderson)

For the last 6 years, the Chileans students have made the problems of the education system more visible, making their claim for quality and equity worldwide news. The main result of this has been an effort of the society to improve the quality of the schools and the level of education (teaching and learning). In regard to challenges of the school system, one of the main problems identified was that the Chilean school principals spend a large part of their daily routine fulfilling administrative responsibilities, including frequent meetings with bureaucratic organization and planning school finances.

However, this situation is changing. Over the last five year, some modifications in recent laws have defined the role of schools principals, for example in 2008 the new General Education Law emphasized the role of the principal as a pedagogical leader instead of an administrator. Additionally, in 2011 a Quality Law was created. This law defines the new framework and responsibilities for the school principal. There have been many changes as a result of the student pressures and recent regulations and I briefly discuss principals development.

Firstly, there is an increased interest in research on schools principals, their role, attributes, formation, career development and responsibilities. In 2008, Fundacion Chile in alliance with OISE, began to investigate the practices of school Principals. The result showed that teacher instructional support and collaborative work were the least seen practices. The second area is related to school directors’ formation. The challenge has been to design and implement new courses that focus on pedagogical leadership.This theme and others in the Chilean education system, will be discussed at the seminar.


Wednesday September 25, 2013  4:00-5:00 pm (Room 7-105)

Topic: All you need to know about applying for and attending conferences - CIES in particular

Speaker: Vandra Masemann, Adjunct Associate Professor, CIDE

Conferences are an indispensable part of every CIDE student’s professional development. This seminar will give an introduction to students who may never have thought about attending professional conferences before. It will also provide encouragement for those who want to improve their abstracts and presentations. Through every phase of the process – submission of the abstract, preparing the paper, negotiating the networking process, presenting the paper- the student is given tips for improving the experience.

All those who attend will be given an opportunity to choose one book to keep from the late Professor Joe Farrell’s professional library as his family’s way of saying thanks to the CIDE community and encouraging the upcoming generation of CIDE graduates.

VANDRA LEA MASEMANN is an anthropologist who has worked in the fields of comparative education, multicultural and anti-racist education, and international and global education. Her Ph.D. thesis was an ethnography of a girls’ boarding school in West Africa, and she has devoted a considerable portion of her career to advocating the uses of ethnographic and other qualitative methods in research in comparative education. She has taught at the Faculty of Education, University of Toronto, the University of Wisconsin-Madison, the University of Pittsburgh, the State University of New York at Buffalo, and the Florida State University, and is presently Adjunct Associate Professor at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto. She was President of the World Council of Comparative Education Societies (1987-1991) and its Secretary General (1996-2000), the Comparative and International Education Society (1990-1991), and the Comparative and International Education Society of Canada (1985-1987).


Thursday September 19, 2013  12 noon- 1:30 pm (Room 7-105)

Topic: Education Policy Change From Below: Advocating for Social Justice and Redefining Knowledge through Social Movements

Speaker: Carol Anne Spreen, Associate Professor, Department of Leadership, Foundations and Policy, University of Virginia

This presentation will identify the role of social movements and community struggles as possibilities for democratic processes of educational change in an unequal education system. It builds an argument around class, political economy, and community participation situated in critical education policy analysis and identifies participatory action research as the primary methodological tool,  underscoring the implications of the neglect of poor and marginalised ‘voices’ in educational policymaking.  Specifically, I trace and analyse the dynamics of policy formulation and implementation in South Africa over the past seventeen years through a compilation of research conducted with the Education Rights Project (ERP).

Through this presentation I suggest that what has been missing from most analysis of transitional policymaking in South Africa is a careful examination of social class and participation, particularly how and why social movements and other actors on the ground who were initially central to policy formulation and critique, were largely marginalised once policies were institutionalized. Policy texts cannot be read separately from their implementation, nor can they be delinked from political and financial commitments to support them. Most importantly, policies cannot exclude those who are most affected by them. By meaningfully and respectfully ensuring that the perspectives, life experiences and ideas of communities of the marginalised are incorporated in policy related research, policymakers can take local challenges into account and better deliver on what is needed. 

Carol Anne Spreen is an associate professor of education in the Department of Leadership, Foundations and Policy at the University of Virginia. Her scholarship and policy work focus on issues of education rights, school reform, and educational equity. Her current research addresses teacher’s lives and work in rural South African schools, and using participatory/action research to study the long term impact poverty and inequality on educational access and outcomes. Dr. Spreen received her Ph.D. in Comparative and International Education from Teachers College, Columbia University.


September 24, 2013, 1:00 am-1:00 pm (Room 7-105)

CIDE Mini Symposium  - Chair: Sarfaroz Niyozov

Advocacy as Political Strategy: The emergence of an “Education for All” campaign at ActionAid International and the Asia South Pacific Association for Basic and Adult Education

Bronwen Magrath is a Doctoral Candidate at OISE in the Comparative, International & Development Education Centre and the Dynamics of Global Change Program at the Munk School of Global Affairs.


Experiences of Rural Students with Community Schooling in Egypt

Lucy El Sherif, MA Cand, OISE, in the Comparative, International & Development Education Centre


Educational developments in Turkey and educational institutions inspired by Turkish Scholar Mr Fethullah Gülen

Mehmet Durmus, PhD Cand, OISE, in the Comparative, International & Development Education Centre


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