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Gordon Michael, PhD Student

Biography

Michael received his B.A. in Political Science from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario. During the time at McMaster, his focus was primarily in the field of International Relations, with particular interest in the areas of international migration, human rights, conflict studies and human trafficking. While at McMaster, Michael also took the opportunity to study at the University of Leeds in an effort to diversify his education and gain valuable knowledge from some of Europe’s leading scholars.

During Michael's time at the Balsillie School of International Affairs, University of Waterloo, his research was primarily focused in the area of international migration as it relates to human trafficking, particularly state border policy response. The research centred on understanding how governments construct the discourse of victimization and agency in order to develop a humanitarian response to the issue of human trafficking. Through this process, his work challenged how states respond through further restriction of mobility. Understanding the role of agency involved in the discourse of human trafficking is an integral part of encouraging more effective policy responses.

Michael has returned to McMaster to pursue his PhD in Political Science, with a specialization in International Relations. The focus of his research at McMaster is in furthering the knowledge and understanding of irregular migration through an investigation of migrant journeys into the European Union.

 

Education

M.A. Global Governance - Balsillie School of International Affairs, University of Waterloo

B.A. (Hons) Political Science - McMaster University

Teaching

Teaching Assistant

POL SCI 1AA3 - Government, Politics and Power - Dr. T. Alway (Fall 2016)

POL SCI 1AB3 - Politics & Power in a Globalizing World - Dr. T. Alway (Winter 2017)

Research

Tentative Dissertation Title: (De)Constructing ‘Illegality’: Migrant Journeys and the Humanitarian-Security Nexus

Supervisor: Dr. Peter Nyers

Area of Focus: Irregular Migration, Humanitarian Border Policy and Migrant Journeys

Abstract: Irregular migration has emerged as one of the prominent issues within an increasingly globalized system. The overarching objective of this study is to examine migrant journeys within the humanitarian-security nexus framework and explore the construction and evolution of the image and imaginary of ‘illegal’ migrants, while interrogating border crossing as a form of migrant resistance to state bordering practices. Observing migrant journeys, coupled with state responses to irregular migration is essential to understanding the greater trends of mobility, state security, border control and citizenship.

Research Contributions

Daniel, B & Gordon, M. (2015). Enhancing Migrant Women’s Workers Rights and Mainstreaming Gender in Global Migration Governance. CIGI Graduate Fellows Policy Brief Series No. 2. Equal Authorship. https://www.cigionline.org/publications/enhancing-women-migrant-workers-rights-and-mainstreaming-gender-global-migration-govern

Conference Presentations

Gordon, M (2017). Border Spectacle and the Construction of ‘Illegality’: Borders, Irregularity and the Humanitarian-Security Nexus. Presented at the Canadian Association of Refugee and Forced Migration Studies (CARFMS). University of Victoria, Victoria, BC

Gordon, M (2017). Border Spectacle and the Construction of ‘Illegality’: Borders, Irregularity and the Humanitarian-Security Nexus. Presented at the Migration/Representation/Stereotypes Conference. University of Ottawa, Ottawa, ON

Gordon, M (2017). Growing Global Apartheid: The Securitization of Borders and the Politics of Aid. Presented at the Migration and Ethnic Relations Graduate Student Conference. Western University, London, ON

Gordon, M (2017). Borders, Security and the Global Migration Industry. Presented at the Mapping the Global Dimensions of Policy 6 Conference. McMaster University, Hamilton, ON

Gordon, M. (2016). Enhancing Migrant Women’s Workers Rights and Mainstreaming Gender in Global Migration Governance. Presented at the Global Labour Research Centre Graduate Student Symposium, York University, Toronto, ON

Gordon, M. (2015). Constructing ‘Natasha’: Human Trafficking Discourse and ‘Humanitarian’ Border Policy Regimes. Paper presented at the Governing Migration from the Margins Workshop, Balsillie School of International Affairs, Waterloo, ON

Daniel, B. & Gordon, M. (2015). Enhancing Migrant Women’s Workers Rights and Mainstreaming Gender in Global Migration Governance. Presented at the CIGI Graduate Fellowship Symposium, Balsillie School of International Affairs, Waterloo, ON

Gordon, M. (2015). The Humanity of ‘Illegality’: An Auto-Ethnographic Account of Irregular Migration in Central America. Presented at the Engage 2015 Graduate Conference, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON