Stephanie 2_8888.jpg

I am a migration researcher and educator working at the intersections of law, society, ethics, and policy. I have experience working for and with governments, universities, front-line workers, and migrant community groups. I also have two young, curious children for whom I am striving to leave the world a better place than how I am finding it.


Countries worked in: Canada, United States, United Kingdom

  • The American Philosophical Association
  • The Canadian Association for Refugee and Forced Migration Studies
  • The Canadian Political Science Association
  • The Canadian Society for the Study of Practical Ethics
  • The European Group for the Study of Deviance and Social Control
  • The International Association for the Study of Forced Migration 
  • The International Detention Coalition

professional affiliations


Peer-reviewed Articles and Book Chapters

  • (Under review) The Dog-Whistle Politics of Immigration Detention, Social & Legal Studies
  • (Forthcoming) Under the Umbrella of Administrative Law: Immigration Detention and the Challenges of Producing Just Immigration Law, Ethics & International Affairs
  • (Forthcoming – September 2018) The Solitary Cell, Global Justice: Theory Practice Rhetoric, with Petra Molnar
  • (Forthcoming) Immigration Detention: Human Rights Denied, Routledge Handbook on Human Rights, Eds. Jean H Quataert and Lora Wildenthal.
  • (2017) Families in US Immigration Detention: What does it mean to do ‘the right thing’? Contemporary Readings in Law and Social Justice 9(02), with Ben Lewis
  • (2017) Alternatives to Detention. In the Interest of the Child. Edited by Nanette Neuwhal and Armin Boroumand. Montreal: Themis Edition.
  • (2017) Detention-as-Spectacle, International Political Sociology, Vol. 11, No.1, pp. 21 – 38, with Cetta Mainwaring
  • (2016) ‘Imposter-Children’ in the UK Refugee Status Determination Process, Refuge: Canada’s Journal on Refugees Vol. 34 No. 2, pp. 30 – 39
  • (2016) Cracks Where the Light Gets in: Recent Legal Breakthroughs in Detention and Crimmigration in Canada, Metropolitics, Special Issue: This Is Not Where It Ends, published 07 December, with Petra Molnar
  • (2016) Troubling the Fields: Choice, Consent, and Coercion in the Canadian Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program, International Migration Vol. 54 No. 5, pp. 91 – 104, with Amrita Hari
  • (2016) Everyday Injustices: Barriers to Access to Justice for Immigration Detainees in Canada, Refugee Survey Quarterly, Vol. 35, No. 1, pp. 109-127, with Petra Molnar
  • (2016) The Difference That Detention Makes: Reconceptualising the Boundaries of the Normative Debate on Immigration Control, in Emerging Trends in the Ethics of Immigration, edited by Alex Sager (London: Rowan and Littlefield)
  • (2016) Mothers Versus Texas: Ethical Problems With Local ‘Attrition Through Enforcement’ Ordinances In The United States, The Critique: Who is My Neighbour? published 15 January
  • (2015, 2017) Understanding Immigration Detention and Its Human Impact, with Amy Nethery, in Immigration Detention: The Migration of a Policy, in Immigration Detention: The Migration of a Policy and its Human Impact. (Abingdon: Routledge) Ed. Amy Nethery and Stephanie Silvermam
  • (2014) In the Wake of Irregular Arrivals: Changes to the Canadian Immigration Detention System, Refuge: Canada’s Journal on Refugees, Vol. 30, No. 2, pp. 27 – 34
  • (2014) Detaining Immigrants and Asylum Seekers: A Normative Introduction, The Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy, Vol. 17, No. 5, pp. 600 - 617
  • (2014) Internment in the United Kingdom During the Twentieth Century and Its Links to the Evolution of Immigration Detention, International Journal of Criminology and Sociology, Vol. 3, pp. 168 – 174
  • (2012) ‘Regrettable but Necessary’? The Rise of the UK Immigration Detention Estate and its Opposition, Politics & Policy Vol. 40, No. 6, pp. 1131 – 115
  • (2012) Why Immigration Detention is Unique, with Evelyne Massa, in Population, Space and Place, Vol. 18, No. 6, pp. 677 – 686

 Edited Book and Special Journal Issues

  • (2015; 2017 paperback edition) Immigration Detention: The Migration of a Policy and its Human Impact. (Abingdon: Routledge), co-edited with Amy Nethery. Reviewed in: Border Criminologies;; Global Justice: Theory, Practice, Rhetoric; Journal of Refugee Law; The London School of Economics Book Review; Refuge: Canada’s Journal on Refugees
  • (2012) Immigration Detention, Special Issue of Population, Space and Place Vol. 18, No. 6, co-edited with Evelyne Massa

Refereed Working Papers

  • (2016) Briefing: Immigration Detention in the UK, in Policy Briefings, edited by Madeleine Sumption (Oxford: Migration Observatory, also 2010, 2012)
  • (2016) Ending the Routine Use of Immigration Detention: The Moral Argument for Alternatives in the United States and Beyond, CARFMS/ACERMF Working Paper No 2016/1, pp. 1 - 30 (Ryerson University: The Canadian Association of Refugee and Forced Migration Studies), with Ben Lewis
  • (2015) Unshackled Discretion: Barriers to Procedural Justice in the Canadian Immigration Detention System, Detention and Asylum Research Cluster Working Paper No 1, pp. 1 - 28 (Toronto: Refugee Research Network), with Petra Molnar
  • (2013) Detention in Canada, in Detention and Asylum Research Cluster Papers, Edited by Jennifer Hyndman, Delphine Nakache (Toronto: Refugee Research Network)
  • (2013) Key Academic Research on Detention and Asylum Detention and Asylum Research Cluster Papers, Edited by Jennifer Hyndman, Delphine Nakache (Toronto: Refugee Research Network) 
  • (2012) Return to the Isle of Man: The Implications of Internment for Understanding Immigration Detention in the UK, COMPAS Working Paper No 12 – 102, edited by Ali Rogers (Oxford: COMPAS)
  • (2010) Immigration Detention in America: A History of its Expansion and a Study of its Significance, COMPAS Working Paper No 10 – 80, edited by Ali Rogers (Oxford: Centre on Migration, Policy, and Society)

Other Publications

  • (2017) Reforming Immigration Detention Now: Responding to the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA) Calls for Public Consultations, with Petra Molnar. CARFMS / ACERMF Blog, published online 01 September.
  • (2017) Toronto Can Easily Do More For Non-Status Children, The Huffington Post Canada, with Salina Abji and Petra Molnar, published online 22 June.
  • (2017) Written submissions on CBSA’s Immigration Detention Framework, with Petra Molnar. Submitted 22 May.
  • (2017) The Illegalization of Maribel Trujillo-Diaz, Parts I and II, CARFMS / ACERMF Blog, published online 27 April and 15 May.
  • (2016) Rejecting ‘Nationality Swapping’ and ‘Imposter-Children’ in Refugee Politics, The New West: The Western Political Science Association Blog, published online 19 November.
  • (2016) We Must Not Close the Doors to Spontaneously Arriving Asylum Seekers, Centre for International Policy Studies Blog, published online 08 November
  • (2016) The Difference that Immigration Detention Makes, Rowman & Littlefield International Blog, published online 12 October
  • (2016) Research Findings from Immigration Detention: Arguments for Increasing Access to Justice, CARFMS / ACERMF Blog, with Petra Molnar, published online 15 August
  • (2016) Excluded from Justice? Immigration Detainees in Canada, Canadian Lawyers for International Human Rights Blog, with Petra Molnar, published online 04 April
  • (2015) What Are ‘Hotspots’? The Inevitable Rise of Detention in the Quest for Asylum Solutions in the EU, Centre for International Policy Studies Blog, published online 16 October
  • (2015) The Charter Strikes Back: A Step Forward for Refugee Rights in Canada, Centre for International Policy Studies Blog, published online 30 July
  • (2015) UK immigration detention: What sort of reform, and when?, The London School of Economics and Political Science British Politics and Policy Blog, published online 15 April
  • (2013) Questions over alternatives to detention programmes, Forced Migration Review Vol. 44, September
  • (2013) Changes to the Canadian Immigration Detention System Border Criminologies, published online July
  • (2012) Why Is There No Refuge for Roma Refugees?, The Huffington Post, with Efrat Arbel and Julianna Beaudoin, published online 21 December
  • (2012) Refugees are People, Too, The Huffington Post, with Jennifer Hyndman, published online 11 May; republished as ‘Why Immigration Detention Harms People and Doesn’t Work’, Fahamu Refugee Legal Aid Newsletter June 2012
  • (2008) Redrawing The Lines of Control: What Political Action Undertaken by Refugees in Border Detention Centres Can Tell Us About International Politics, Proceedings of the Dead/Lines: Contemporary Issues in Legal and Politics Theory Conference (Edinburgh: University of Edinburgh)
  • (2008) How Long is Too Long? An Examination of the Practice of Long-term Immigration Detention in Canada, Proceedings of the Fourth Annual Ethnic and Pluralism Studies Graduate Research Conference (Toronto: Harney Program in Ethnic, Immigration, and Pluralism Studies)

teaching and professional services

Teaching Experience

  • (2017 – 2018) Major Research Paper Supervision: Marokh Yousifshahi, “Criminalizing and Detaining: Why Canada is Failing Immigrant Children”, Masters of Arts in Public and International Affairs, Graduate School of Public and International Affairs, University of Ottawa
  • (2014-15, 2015-16, 2017-18) TRN407YI: Community Research Partnerships in Ethics; Ethics, Society and Law Program, Trinity College. Designed research course for 8 or 10 4th-year undergraduate students conducting original qualitative research, plus office hours
  • (2015-16 - present) TRN303H1S: The Ethics of Borders, Asylum, and Immigration; Ethics, Society and Law Program, Trinity College. Designed, lectured, and graded core course for 20 - 30 undergraduate students, including weekly 2-hour classes plus office hours

Professional Service

  • (2017 - ongoing) International Advisor, International Detention Coalition International Advisory Committee (as an elected International Advisor, I provide guidance and counsel to the International Detention Coalition Secretariat across the four key areas of work, including input into the development and implementation of the IDC Strategic Plan.)
  • (2017 - ongoing) Committee Member, Women’s Caucus, Canadian Political Science Association
  • (2017 – ongoing) Committee Member, Canadian Young Researchers Network on Migration
  • (2016  – ongoing ) Editorial Committee Member, CARFMS Working Papers Series
  • (2015 – ongoing) Elected Secretary, Executive Committee, Canadian Association of Refugee and Forced Migration Studies (as elected Secretary, my responsibilities include scheduling meetings, assisting with planning the research agenda and annual conference, and writing the newsletter)
  • (2015 – 2016) Faculty Advisor, Ethics, Society, and Law Students Association, University of Toronto
  • (2016, 2017) Faculty Organizer, Ethics, Society and Law / Trinity One, Undergraduate Research Poster Day, Seeley Hall, University of Toronto (39 student participants presenting original research posters; this initiative has since been adopted into the academic calendar)
  • (2015) Coordinator, Centre for Ethics Reading Group: ‘The Price of Rights’ (After soliciting a renewed membership, I led and organized monthly meetings and special events, including an Author Meets Critics of postgraduate students)
  • (2012 – ongoing) Convener and Co-chair, Normative Theory of Immigration Control Working Group (25 political theorists; my responsibilities include organizing semi-monthly Skype workshops)
  • (2011 – ongoing) Convener and Chair, The Detention Workshop (250+ international members; semimonthly email updates, and collaborative work including conference panels, national and international court briefs, policy reports, and academic research)