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Kristi Kenyon


  • CIFAR Azrieli Global Scholar 2017-2019
  • Successful Societies


Kristi Kenyon’s research engages the interdisciplinary intersection of political science, public health, development, human rights and law.

Focusing on questions of social well-being and belonging, she examines how civil society actors mobilize around human rights, health and development goals in sub-Saharan Africa. Does knowledge of human rights change how people interact with the state? Can activism improve health? What is the relationship between social goods such as human rights, health and democracy? What is the practical, lived meaning of these important concepts in people’s daily lives? Kenyon’s academic interests are informed by her degrees in political science and human rights and inspired by her extensive experience working in, on and with civil society organizations.


  • Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Postdoctoral Fellowship, Department of Political Science, Dalhousie University
  • University of Pretoria Postdoctoral Fellowship, Centre for Human Rights, Faculty of Law
  • Trudeau Foundation Scholar
  • SSHRC Canada Graduate Scholar–Doctoral
  • Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar

Relevant Publications

  • Kenyon, K.H. “Bringing the Field into the Classroom: Methods and Experiential Learning in the ‘Politics of Development.’” Politics 37, no. 1 (2017): 97–112.
  • Kenyon, K.H., and R. Garcia. “Exploring Human Rights-Based Activism as a Social Determinant of Health: Insights from Brazil and South Africa.” Journal of Human Rights Practice 8, no. 2 (2016): 198–218.
  • Kenyon, K.H. “Localizing the Global/Globalizing the Local: Reconciling Botho and Human Rights in Botswana.” In Social Practice of Human Rights, edited by Joel Pruce, 101–20. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015.
  • Kenyon, K., H. Frohard-Dourlent, and W.D. Roth. “Falling between the Cracks: Ambiguities of International Student Status in Canada.” Canadian Journal of Higher Education 42, no. 1 (2012): 1–24.
  • Kenyon, K. “Reasons for Rights: A Qualitative Approach to Rights Use Among HIV Advocacy Groups.” In Beyond the law: Multidisciplinary Perspectives on Human Rights, edited by Frans Viljoen, 67–94. Pretoria, South Africa: Pretoria University Law Press, 2012.

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