Tenure-Track Associate/Assistant Professor - Indigenous Studies and Law & Society

Date: Nov 23, 2022

Location: Brantford, CA

Company: Wilfrid Laurier University

Faculty/Academic Area: Faculty of Liberal Arts 

Department: Indigenous Studies 

Campus: Brantford 

Employee Group: WLUFA 

Requisition ID: 5137 


Seeking Indigenous Scholar in Indigenous Studies with a focus on Law and Society (Subject to budgetary approval)


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Faculty and Department/Area: Faculty of Liberal Arts, Indigenous Studies Program, Law & Society Program

Position Location: Brantford

Rank/s of the Position: Assistant or Associate Professor 

Type of Position: Tenure-Track/Tenured

Area of Specializations: Candidates should have the ability to teach in one or more of the following areas: 

  • Indigenous law and justice
  • Indigenous politics, activism, and governance
  • Indigenous history 


Position Summary:

We seek Indigenous (First Nations, Métis, Inuit, Afro Indigenous, Black Indigenous) scholars in the area of Indigenous Governance, Justice and or Law who are committed to excellence in academic research, teaching and service that contributes to the aspirations of self-governance by Indigenous Peoples and communities locally and globally and/or to the field of Indigenous Studies. The successful candidate will bring knowledge, training, and lived experiences in the fields of Indigenous governance, Indigenous law, and justice, and/or Indigenous public policy.  They will understand the complex Indigenous rights and governance issues that continue to plague Indigenous-State relations around the globe from a frame of Indigenous thought and philosophy and with an emphasis on practical guidance for learners exploring Indigenous Nationhood. Experience in student advising and mentorship is an asset. Candidates should have a demonstrated commitment to working in partnership with Indigenous communities.
This position is housed in the Indigenous Studies Program but will be cross-appointed with Law & Society in the Faculty of Liberal Arts (FLA); as such, the successful candidate’s teaching responsibilities would be divided between Indigenous Studies and Law & Society.


Although the areas specified above represent broad areas of need within the programs, other areas of teaching expertise will also be considered. The successful candidate will teach undergraduate students in the Indigenous Studies and Law and Society majors and minors across multiple years, as well as non-majors in other programs. The successful candidate will also contribute to program development and innovation.  



The successful candidate will demonstrate an active research program in the area of Indigenous Governance, Justice and/or Law. Candidates must provide evidence of the ability to work collaboratively in an interdisciplinary and student-centered environment. The main criteria for selection are potential contribution to research, teaching and program development; lived experience of Indigeneity; and substantial community work and/or scholarship in the posted areas. 
Applicants must have completed, or be close to completing, a doctoral degree (PhD) in Indigenous studies, law, or a related discipline, or have equivalent qualifications (either law degree or masters with a substantial record of professional and community experience or experience as a community-recognized Indigenous Knowledge Keeper for at least 10 years). Candidates should demonstrate the ability to teach from Indigenous ways of knowing and being. 


Faculty/Department/Program Description: 

Indigenous Studies is a growing, interdisciplinary program whose goal is to help students understand and critique the ways in which colonial narratives shape and control contemporary discourses about Indigenous peoples. Indigenous Studies courses require an examination of the ways in which both historical and ongoing acts of colonization galvanize Indigenous communities’ resistance, worldviews, and ways of knowing. The program provides an understanding of contemporary issues as they relate to Indigenous peoples. Employing a holistic approach, the program fosters a greater understanding of Indigenous peoples, their histories, and their place in the world. The program can be completed in combination with several Brantford-based programs and an Indigenous Studies minor is also available.  


Law and Society is an interdisciplinary undergraduate program rooted in social scientific, interpretive, critical and historical analyses of law across multiple social contexts. A sociolegal approach to law looks beyond authorized texts and formal institutions; it recognizes that legality exists in the consciousness and practices of people(s) touched by law, in the process of making claims for justice, and in the coercive power embedded in social ordering.  Law and society also highlights resistance and defiance in the face of law, and alternatives to formal law in the structure of social relations.
In addition to situating Indigenous knowledge within the Liberal Arts curriculum, the Indigenous Studies program supports Indigenous students attending Wilfrid Laurier University and encourages non-Indigenous students to commit to reconciliation and decolonization. More information about Laurier’s Office of Indigenous Initiatives can be found on the website. 
Wilfrid Laurier University’s Strategic Academic Plan prioritizes building capacity in Indigenous education and commits to the Indigenization of our campuses through Indigenous programming, which it seeks to expand under the leadership of Indigenous students, faculty, and staff. 


The Faculty of Liberal Arts, located at the Brantford campus, offers a wide range of programs, from traditional arts disciplines such as English and History to innovative and cutting-edge fields of study such as User Experience Design and Digital Media and Journalism. In all the programs students get both knowledge and know-how; all programs offer experiential learning opportunities. Through several unique partnerships with Conestoga College and the University of Sussex, students have opportunities to include postgraduate certificates or an additional degree. The Master of Arts program in Social Justice and Community Engagement offered by the faculty is unique in Canada. The Faculty currently has nearly 800 students and 33 full-time faculty, as well as many part-time instructors.


Wilfrid Laurier University (Laurier) is a multi-campus university renowned for its extraordinary learning environment and highly personalized educational experience. As a comprehensive university with more than 19,000 students, Laurier has grown rapidly in research intensity while at the same time preserving our well-earned reputation for excellent undergraduate teaching and learning. With a multi-campus and multi-community culture, Laurier offers students an exceptional range of more than 100 academic programs. As a leader in higher education for more than a century, Laurier has offered students a transformative experience, an ethos that is offered in Laurier’s intention to inspire lives of leadership and purpose. 


Laurier’s campuses and locations are on the Haldimand Tract, within the traditional territories of the Neutral, Anishnaabe and Haudenosaunee peoples. A short 2.5-hour drive of 18 First Nations communities, including the Six Nations of the Grand River— the most populous First Nation in Canada — and the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation. Kitchener-Waterloo and Brantford both have large urban Indigenous populations. There are 12 Métis councils within a 3-hour radius. We recognize the unique heritages of Indigenous peoples and support their right to preserve and express their distinctive Indigenous cultures, histories, and knowledge through academic programming, research, and co-curricular activities. Laurier honours Indigenous knowledge through diverse ongoing initiatives, programs, funding events, and positions, including the university’s Indigenous Student Centres, its Centre for Indigegogy, the Indigenous Knowledge Fund, Indigenous Education Week and the annual Indigenous Research Symposium. Laurier welcomes a regular stream of Visiting Elders and has an Indigenous Curriculum Specialist, not to mention a growing number of Indigenous faculty, students, and staff.


The Brantford Campus is interwoven into Brantford’s downtown core with more than 3000 undergraduate and graduate students, over 80 full-time faculty, and 18 different programs across four different faculties. Neighbouring Laurier's Brantford campus are the Woodland Cultural Centre and Six Nations Polytechnic. The City of Brantford is approximately a one-hour drive along the QEW and Hwy. 403 from Toronto and the Niagara region and boasts a healthy arts and culture scene, world-class trails system for walking and biking, and a strong slate of festivals and events.


Deciding to Become a Candidate:

The following is a list of the steps we anticipate in the recruitment process for this position. We would also like to bring to your attention several key issues we would recommend you consider as you navigate the search process.


How to apply:


Candidates who identify as Indigenous (First Nations, Métis, Inuit, Afro Indigenous, Black Indigenous) are encouraged to apply by including the following in their application. (Please note that additional materials may be requested through the review process.)

  • a letter of intent including the candidate’s research and teaching interest and where this best aligns with Laurier’s areas of priority.
  • a curriculum vitae.
  • a statement on teaching philosophy, and any evidence of teaching effectiveness (such as a peer teaching review and student/participant feedback). 
  • sample publication, scholarly output or URL link to public presentations.
  • the names and contact information of three referees and one from a community referee.
  • Indigenous Identity Fraud/Theft has been a significant issue highlighted in the media, and we will be taking steps to confirm Indigenous Identity as part of the recruitment and selection process. The Indigenous Identity Verification process used to confirm identity is being developed in consultation with the Office of Indigenous Initiatives.


Applications can be addressed to Dr. Percy Lezard, Chair, Indigenous Studies and Dr. Kelly Gallagher-Mackay, Chair, Law and Society c/o Celine Taillefer-Travers, Academic Program Assistant and submitted electronically to ctravers@wlu.ca. Applications will be accepted until January 2, 2023.


Wilfrid Laurier University is committed to employment equity and values diversity. Laurier welcomes applications from qualified members of the equity-deserving groups.  Indigenous candidates who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programming at Laurier are welcome to contact the Office of Indigenous Initiatives at indigenous@wlu.ca. Candidates from other equity deserving-groups who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programming at Laurier are welcome to contact Equity and Accessibility at equity@wlu.ca.


All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, as per Canadian immigration laws, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority. To comply with the Government of Canada’s reporting requirements, the University is obligated to gather information about applicants’ status as either Permanent Residents of Canada or Canadian citizens. Applicants need not identify their country of origin or current citizenships; however, all applicants must include one of the following statements in their cover letter:


Yes, I am a current citizen or permanent resident of Canada;
No, I am not a current citizen or permanent resident of Canada


Applicants are encouraged to address any career interruptions or special circumstances that may have affected their record of research and teaching, in accordance with Tri-Council definitions and guidelines.


Laurier strives to make our application process accessible and provides accommodations for both applicants and employees as outlined in Policy 8.7. If you require assistance applying for this position, to obtain a copy of this job description in an accessible format, or would like to discuss accessibility and accommodations during the recruitment process please email equity@wlu.ca.


Laurier's mandatory vaccination policy paused May 1. Should public health recommendations change, vaccination requirements can be brought back on short notice. While proof of vaccination requirements paused May 1, Laurier community members should remain up to date with their COVID-19 vaccinations, including booster doses, as recommended by public health. The university reserves the right to re-implement the vaccination requirement at any time in response to public health conditions. Wilfrid Laurier University will keep its mandatory face-covering policy in effect until further notice. 


Wilfrid Laurier University endeavors to fill positions with qualified candidates who have a combination of education, experience, skills and abilities to successfully perform the duties of the position while demonstrating Laurier's Employee Success Factors.

Equity, diversity and creating a culture of inclusion are part of Laurier’s core values and central to the Laurier Strategy. Laurier is committed to increasing the diversity of faculty and staff and welcomes applications from candidates who identify as Indigenous, racialized, having disabilities, and from persons of any minority sexual and gender identities. Indigenous candidates who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programing at Laurier are welcomed to contact the Office of Indigenous Initiatives. Candidates from other equity deserving groups who would like to learn more about equity and inclusive programing at Laurier are welcomed to contact Equity & Accessibility. We have strived to make our application process accessible, however if you require any assistance applying for a position or would like this job posting in an alternative format, please contact Human Resources. Contact information can be found at careers.wlu.ca/content/How-to-apply/


Should you be interested in learning more about this opportunity, please visit www.wlu.ca/careers for additional information and the online application system. All applications must be submitted online. Please note, a CV and letter of introduction will be required in electronic form.

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