University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign School of Social Work Hosts Series on Harnessing Technology for Social Good

The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign School of Social Work is continuing its lecture series designed to meet the profession’s Grand Challenge to Harness Technology for Social Good.


This lecture series is designed to present innovative applications of technology powered by science in order to expand new opportunities and collaborations for reaching more people with greater impact on society’s most vexing social problems. This year we are holding this lecture series on Zoom. These events are free and open to the public. Registration is required.

Upcoming Event:

Can Marginalized Groups Use Social Media to Effect Political Change?
February 10, 2022 – 12-1 p.m. CST
Dr. Emmanuelle Richez, University of Windsor, Ontario, Canada


Over the last decade, more and more marginalized groups have used social media to call attention to issues that matter to them, to gain popular support, and to establish a dialogue with political elites. Although many studies focus on how online mobilisation impacts marginalized groups, little scholarship exists that tries to measure the political change brought about by their cyber engagement. Using the Indigenous-led Idle No More movement at the federal level in Canada as a case-study, the presentation will examine whether marginalized groups can use social media to effect political change. It will show that, ultimately, the Idle No More online protests increased the national salience of Indigenous issues temporarily, but without significantly influencing policy outcomes in that area.

Dr. Emmanuelle Richez is an Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Windsor in Ontario, Canada. Her research focuses on the different avenues through which ethno-cultural minorities can have their rights recognized and enforced. As such, she studies the potential of social media and judicial review for rights expansion. Her articles have appeared, among others, in Social Media+ SocietyInformation, Communication & Society, and the Canadian Journal of Political Science. She is a research affiliate of the Centre d’analyse politique – Constitution Fédéralisme at the Université du Québec à Montréal as well as of the Courts & Politics Research Group of South-Western Ontario. She serves as a federally-appointed member of the Official Languages Rights Expert Panel of the Court Challenges Program of Canada. She holds a PhD in political science from McGill University.

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