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Steering Committee

Carrie Sanders (Director)

Carrie SandersDr. Carrie B. Sanders is Director of Centre for Research on Security Practices (CRSP) and Associate Professor of Criminology at Wilfrid Laurier University. Her research focuses on policing technologies, police intelligence practices, plural policing, gender in policing, and technologically mediated interactions in criminal justice. Using qualitative methods, her research empirically studies how political, economic, organizational, situational and cultural contexts shape and influence policing practices and the use of police technologies. Her research has been published in high impact, international journals such as: Gender & Society; British Journal of Criminology; and Policing & Society and has received national funding by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. She is a fellow of the Balsillie School of International Affairs. Her new book (with Stacey Hannem, Christopher Schneider, Aaron Doyle and Antony Christensen) is Security and Risk Technologies in Criminal Justice: Critical Perspective (2019) Canadian Scholars Press.

Bree Akesson (Associate Director)

Bree AkessonDr. Bree Akesson is Associate Director of CRSP and an Associate Professor, Faculty of Social Work at Wilfrid Laurier University. Dr. Akesson has a PhD in Social Work from McGill University, as well as Master’s degrees in Public Health and Social Work from Columbia University. Her research focuses broadly on the relationship between human security and international social issues, with projects ranging from micro-level understandings of the everyday experiences of war-affected families to macro-level initiatives to strengthen the global social service workforce. With over 15 years of international experience, she has worked in a variety of settings including Afghanistan, Kenya, Chechnya, Ghana, Lebanon, Nigeria, Palestine, and Uganda with organizations such as Bernard van Leer Foundation, International Rescue Committee, Terre des Hommes, and UNICEF. Her research utilizes mixed methods integrating creative place-based approaches with geographic positioning systems (GPS). She is a faculty affiliate with the CPC Learning Network at Columbia University, the Centre for Research on Children and Families at McGill University, and the International Migration Research Centre at Balsillie School of International Affairs. Dr. Akesson is the recipient of several awards including the 2018 Early Career Researcher Award from Wilfrid Laurier University and the 2019 Early Researcher Award from the Ontario Ministry of Research and Innovation and Science. She is the co-author (with Andrew Basso) of the forthcoming book From bullets to bureaucracy: Extreme domicide and the right to home to be published in 2020 by Rutgers University Press. She has guest edited the journals Children and Society and Intervention: Journal of Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Emergencies.

James Popham

James PophamJames F. Popham, PhD, is an Assistant Professor, Department of Criminology at Wilfrid Laurier University, and Strategic Community Research Liaison at CRSP. Dr. Popham has a PhD in Sociology that focuses on Criminology from the University of Saskatchewan (2016). His research focusses on two distinct areas: community-based knowledge development and digital criminology. During his career, he has worked as a community scholar with notable organizations such as the Community-University Institute for Social Research and the Centre for Community Based Research to conduct program evaluation and strategic development for a number of agencies across Canada. This has included partnerships with Provincial and Regional Governments, First Nations and Tribal Authorities, and NGOs including local United Ways and Community Foundations. He has also recently acted as an expert advisor to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime’s Education for Justice (E4J) cybercrime module, presenting his work in Vienna (Austria) and Tbilisi (Georgia). Dr. Popham is an Affiliate Member to the Laurier Institute for the Study of Popular Opinion and Policy, Research Co-ordinator for the Brant Community Foundation, and a Program Developer with the Centre for Public Safety and Well-Being. He is the co-editor of a volume on social control, available through Fernwood press in 2020, and a forthcoming textbook that focuses on Cybercrime in Canada, under development with the Oxford University Press. Dr. Popham is also author or co-author on more than 30 publications.

Kate Rossiter

Dr. Kate Rossiter is an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Studies at Wilfrid Laurier University’s Brantford campus. Her background combines the critical social scientific study of public health and embodiment with theatre and performance studies, and her award-winning research work is cross-disciplinary, combining critical health and disability studies with participatory and arts-based methodologies. For the past five years, Dr, Rossiter has been the PI of “Recounting Huronia,” a SSHRC-funded research project which aims to explore developmental disability and experiences of institutionalization and institutional violence, with particular focus on the Huronia Regional Centre. She is interested in the structural conditions of violence engendered by and within putative care organizations, and specifically the ways in which discourses of security are engenders as a means to dehumanize institutionalized populations. Emerging from this work, Dr. Rossiter has recently co-authored “Punishing Conditions: Institutional Violence and Disability” with Jen Rinaldi.

Sara Matthews

Sara MatthewsDr. Sara Matthews is Associate Professor of Culture and Conflict in the Department of Global Studies at Wilfrid Laurier University. Working primarily in the field of research-creation, her projects explore the relations between violence, nation building, colonialism and martial politics. Along with Dr. Dina Georgis (University of Toronto) she currently directs the SSHRC funded research-creation project Surveillant Subjectivities: Youth Cultures, Art and Affect, which explores the ways in which marginalized youth in the Toronto region experience surveillance as an embodied affect. Her contributions to the field of critical security studies include a forthcoming project on Canadian civil defense and its relation to settler colonialism and nation building, and The Cultural Life of Drones – an art installation that engages a conversation with the logistics of the drone industry as practiced in the community of Kitchener-Waterloo. Her research extends to curatorial projects that archive visual encounters with legacies of war and social trauma, and her critical art writing on these topics has been published in PUBLIC, FUSE Magazine and in exhibition essays for the Robert Langen Gallery, Circuit Gallery, the Ottawa Art Gallery, and the Doris McCarthy Gallery.

Stacey Wilson-Forsberg

Stacey Wilson ForsbergDr. Stacey Wilson-Forsberg is an Associate Professor in the Human Rights Human Diversity Program at Wilfrid Laurier University. Dr. Wilson-Forsberg has a PhD in Interdisciplinary Social Science from the University of New Brunswick and a Masters degree in International Development from Dalhousie University. Her research examines migration and multiculturalism, with a specific focus on immigrant and refugee youth, migrants with precarious immigration status, and the securitization of the international refugee determination process. Dr. Wilson-Forsberg is currently leading a SSHRC-funded study of the postsecondary transition of African Refugee youth across Canada. The study involves African scholars and education specialists at six Canadian universities along with several community organizations. She is also works with colleagues at el Colegio de la Frontera Sur (ECOSUR) in Chiapas on a study of migrants who are “stuck in mobility” and applying for asylum in Mexico. Dr. Wilson-Forsberg is a qualitative researcher who loves to listen to people’s stories. She believes in George Marcus’s (1995) exhortation to “follow the people, not just the places that they are going, but also to the places they happen to go along the way.” She is a member of several research institutes and networks including the Tshepo Institute for the Study of Contemporary Africa, the Centre for Refugee esearch, and Pathways to Prosperity. She has published two books including “Getting Used to the Quiet: Immigrant Adolescents’ Journey to Belonging in New Brunswick, Canada” (McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2012), which made a valuable contribution to the academic literature on immigration to small cities and rural communities, and “Immigrant Youth in Canada: Theoretical Approaches, Practical Issues, and Professional Perspectives” (Oxford University Press, 2018), the first university-level textbook on immigrant youth in Canada. She has also published several articles in national and international peer-reviewed journals and frequently contributes short articles and opinion pieces to newspapers. Dr. Wilson-Forsberg is the recipient of the 2018 Donald F. Morgenson Faculty Award for Teaching Excellence in Internationalization.


  • Shane Dixon-Senior Research Associate
  • Alicia Schiassi-Coordinator Research Projects and Programming