Crystal Tremblay

Crystal T

Crystal Tremblay is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability. Crystal researches community development, resource management and participatory governance drawing largely from Social Economy, Political Ecology and Feminist theories. Her work is multi-disciplinary and covers such areas as waste and resource governance, environmental and social justice, informal economy, and livelihood enhancement. Crystal’s doctoral work (University of Victoria) unraveled the complex socio-economic, political and environmental facets of the informal waste sector in Brazil, pointing towards inclusive and integrative waste management strategies using action-oriented methodologies, such as video, photo and mapping. From a methodological perspective, she is particularly interested in the critical theory and practice of Participatory Action Research, and other approaches to research that value and strengthen community knowledge and interrogate traditional structures of power in decision-making. She is currently working as a Postdoctoral Fellow with IRES, exploring the impacts and implications of shifting water governance structures in Accra, Ghana and Cape Town, South Africa, simultaneously providing a powerful narrative portraying the lived experiences of the individuals affected by limited or (in)access to water. She uses Participatory Video to engage with communities, broaden participation in decision-making processes, and provide a valuable strategy to challenge entrenched power imbalances through practices of reflexivity, facilitating new levels of self-perception, and identity. Crystal is particularly keen on strengthening structures where communities can gain access to creative communication avenues, promoting enhanced dialogue with government and the wider community, and ultimately leading to increased quality of life. For more information and a full list of publications, please visit Crystal’s website:

Crystal also co-facilitates the Arts of Engagement emerging scholars training seminar (CUVic 2014/2016) This interdisciplinary workshop, sponsored by Community-Based Research Canada, brings together emerging scholars and experienced practitioners in community-university engagement to present and share the promises and challenges of this approach to scholarship. The next workshop will be offered at the CUVIc pre-conference in June 2016. Crystal is also the Research Director for the UNESCO Chair in Community-baed Research and Social Responsibility in Higher Education and co-editor of a recent open source e-book on community university research partnerships, available ONLINE

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