2020 Faculty Fellows
Seed Grants $500-$2,500
Juhee Kang, Assistant Professor, Sociology
“Collaborative Digital Storytelling of Contemporary Bhutan”
The project provides a collaborative learning platform for a group of undergraduates from UCSC and Royal University of Bhutan to create a digital storytelling multimedia website which hosts diverse cultural information and everyday stories of contemporary Bhutanese. Using a participatory action research method, this research aims to explore an alternative pedagogic mode of international service-learning or community engagement based on hands-on collaboration, peer-to-peer learning and mutual growth. It also seeks out an innovative mode of capacity building of the youth in Global South with digital skills to produce tech contents as opposed to unsustainable, hierarchical, self-serving intervention practices of international development.
Patricia Pinho, Associate Professor, Latin American & Latino Studies
“Researching and Resisting Brazil’s Reactionary Wave“
Co-Applicant is Marina Segatti in Feminist Studies. This seed grant will strengthen the existing infrastructure of the research cluster Researching and Resisting Brazil’s Reactionary Wave, initiated in January 2019 and funded by the RCA. We expect this grant to serve as seed for: (1) The development of new theoretical approaches to the study of conservatism in Brazil and beyond, by producing scholarship on the local and global meanings and impacts of three forces currently shaping our world: a) the reactionary right; b) “gender ideology”; and c) whiteness. (2) The establishment of partnerships with Bay Area activists engaged with the defense of Brazilian democracy and social justice. (3) The strengthening of transnational solidarity with activists defending democracy and social justice in Brazil.
Sprout Grants $2,500 to $20,000
James Doucet-Battle, Assistant Professor, Sociology
“A Social History of the National Human Genome Center: Remapping Race and Research in the First Two Decades of the 21st Century”
This pilot project intends toward writing a social history of the National Genome Center (NHGC) at Howard University over the first two decades of the 21st century. It asks: How have the discursive politics of race shifted since the founding of the NHGC and start of the genomic revolution two decades ago? How has the NHGC negotiated the politics of race in formulating its research agenda during this period? I situate the history of the NHGC within a wider historical context of exchange relationships between Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), and Predominantly White Institutions (PWIs).
Jeffrey Erbig, Assistant Professor, Latin American & Latino Studies
“Deportation and Dispossession’s Shared Roots”
This project analyzes deportation in the Americas via its historical connections to Indigenous dispossession. It examines colonial efforts to forcibly transfer purported criminals to contested borderlands while simultaneously banishing Indigenous captives from those borderlands to penal colonies. I argue that these practices aimed to create spatial hierarchies of law and capital accumulation by rearranging racialized bodies and that similar logics undergird present-day deportation regimes. Building upon two years of secondary research and preliminary archival work, a Sprout Grant would enable me to conduct intensive archival research in Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, and Spain and to begin developing a public-facing digital mapping project.
David Gordon, Assistant Professor, Politics
“A Servant of Two Masters? How Cities are Responding to the Dilemma of Urban Decarbonization”
As cities attempt to generate a meaningful response to the threat of climate change they are rendering themselves accountable to global audiences in an effort to secure the capital required to effectively decarbonize. They also recognize that transformative change brings disruption and rests on the political support of a broad coalition of local constituents who perceive such efforts as legitimate. This project asks whether and under what conditions cities can be both transformative and responsive climate governors – what I refer to as the dilemma of urban decarbonization. Building on earlier work this project will leverage a novel dataset of city accountability practices to map the various ways in which cities around the world are responding to the need to be globally legible and responsive to local needs.
Sara Niedzwiecki, Assistant Professor, Politics
“Immigration and Social Policy in Latin America”
Much attention is paid to south-north migration, but almost half of all migration is between countries in the global south. To what extent do states protect immigrants from sickness, old age, poverty, and unemployment? This project provides the first systematic analysis of immigrants’ access to social services and transfers in South America. It combines qualitative coding of legislation, field-research, and surveys in Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay to provide a comparative assessment of social policies and their effect on immigrants. Sprout Grants would allow me to: 1) conduct qualitative field-research in Buenos Aires (Argentina), Santiago (Chile), and Montevideo (Uruguay), 2) hire two graduate student research assistants to complete the qualitative coding of legislation, and 3) apply for funding for conducting a survey in each of these three cities.
Katherine Seto, Assistant Professor, Environmental Studies
“Turning the Tide: Shifting Access, Equity, and Vulnerability in Coastal California”
Co-Applicant is Juan Pedroza, Sociology Department. In recent years, social (e.g. economic) and biophysical (e.g. climate change) forces have transformed the demographic composition of coastal California communities and their relationship to the landscape. While these two phenomena may appear unrelated, growing literatures emphasize profound disparities in the impacts of shocks between communities. Since community vulnerability is shaped by policies and political economic forces, it is largely a function of social rather than biophysical factors. With this research, we seek to understand: how coastal communities in California have changed over time; the drivers of those socioeconomic and demographic changes; and the potential consequences for resilience in climate change scenarios.
Harvest Grants $500 – $1,500
Hillary Angelo, Assistant Professor, Sociology
“Research Report Launch Event: The Challenge of Equity in California’s Municipal Climate Action Plans”
Co-Applicants are: Adam Millard-Ball (ENVS); James Sirigotis (SOCY PhD student); Key MacFarlane (Histcon PhD student).
This project will share practical lessons from the Peruvian movement of working children with non-profit organizations and government institutions working in the fields of children’s rights, youth civic engagement, and youth activism in the United States. Harvest funds will support the distribution of the The Kids are in Charge: Activism and Power in Peru’s Movement of Working Children (NYU Press, forthcoming) and the development and implementation of multiple half-day workshops on adult/child collaborations and intergenerational activism. By sharing knowledge and expertise developed in Latin America, the project will strengthen programs aimed at the political empowerment of children and youth in the United States, build transnational connections, and contribute to the more effective implementation of children’s participatory rights.
Camilla Hawthorne, Assistant Professor, Sociology
“Citizenship and Diasporic Ethics: Youth Politics in the Black Mediterranean” (tentative book title)
Citizenship and Diasporic Ethics: Youth Politics in the Black Mediterranean asks why and how Black Italian activists (specifically, the Italian-born children of African immigrants) have taken up national citizenship as a privileged terrain of struggle over race and membership in Italy. If, as Engin Isin (2005, 183) writes, citizenship represents “how relentlessly the idea of inclusion produces exclusion”—namely, through the distinction between “citizen” and “alien”—what new forms of differentiation and exclusion are emerging in these efforts to reformulate and expand Italian citizenship? The book argues that citizenship—and specifically, longstanding debates about the legal inclusion of Black subjects within European polities—is key to understanding the connection between subtler, late-twentieth century “colorblind” or “cultural racisms” and the increasingly overt racial nationalisms of the last decade. Citizenship and Diasporic Ethics explores the political possibilities and limits of national citizenship, as well as alternative practices of community that envision the “Black Mediterranean” as a capacious unit of diasporic solidarity capable of bringing together Black citizens-in-waiting and Black refugees.