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How to Facilitate an Exploration of Epistemic Justice and Community Engagement Through the Power of Stories

Tuesday, May 12, 2020, 12:15 PM - 1:15 PM (PST)


John Loggins - University of San Diego (PBJN member)
Chris Nayve - University of San Diego (PBJN member)
Star Plaxton-Moore - University of San Francisco (PBJN member)


Epistemic justice foregrounds identity and power in an analysis of ethics and justice countering systems’ default processes that silence and delegitimize certain knowers and ways of knowing, creating epistemic exclusion. Attention to epistemic justice can shape institutional cultures, structures, and practices to identify and remove prejudicial exclusion of students and scholars from participation in the spread of knowledge, credibility discounting, and epistemic marginalization. It is a framework that examines and responds to the impact higher education systems have on privileging whose knowledge is valued, what research is legitimized, and who gets to participate in the creation and spread of knowledge. Story-telling contextualized within an epistemic justice framework validates the assets that each individual has and contributions that everyone can make, believing in their ability and worth, caring for them as individuals, honoring both their individual and group membership while challenging, confronting, and disrupting misconceptions, untruths, and stereotypes that lead to or exacerbate structural inequality and discrimination. A project website is available as a resource for session participants:


Learning from Seattle (and other cities): Place-Based Community Engagement for Justice and Equity

Wednesday, May 13, 2020, 9:30AM - 10:30 AM (PST)

Speakers (all leaders of the Place-Based Justice Network)

Molly Ayers - Gonzaga University
Jamie Ducar - University of Pittsburgh
Kent Koth - Seattle University
John Loggins - University of San Diego
Marie McSweeney Anderson - Loyola University Maryland
Nolizwe Nondabula - University of San Francisco
Erin O'Keefe - Loyola University Maryland
Jennifer Pigza - Saint Mary's College of California
Erica Yamamura - Consultant


Our current pandemic context teaches us that place and relationship are central to our communal flourishing. This session is an opportunity about place-based community engagement strategies designed on the principle that communities and higher education institutions should work in long-term partnerships to identify pathways to greater equity, justice, and sustainability. Participants will learn the core values of place-based justice and hear various institutional examples.


May 2020 Continuous Learning Zoom Call 

Eight campuses discussed how they are adapting place-based community engagement in the time of social distancing to slow the spread of coronavirus. 

PBJN Leadership 2019 Retreat Overview and Agenda 

We invite each member campus to send one representative to the Place-Based Justice Network Leadership Retreat, December 10-12th, 2019 in San Francisco.
Arrival: Please plan travel to arrive on the main campus of the University of San Francisco by 3pm on Tuesday, December 10th. Check-in will open at 2pm outside of our meeing space: The Faculty and Staff Dining Room and Lounge. 
End: We will end the retreat during lunch on Thursday, December 12th. The Retreat will formally close by 12:45pm. 

Questions? Contact Info:
If you have additional questions about how to check-in, please reach out to Alicia Marshall at 415-422-5060 (Alicia's desk) 

Erin Burrows,
View a larger version of the campus map here. 



PBJN Leadership Retreat Agenda

Day One: Tuesday, December 10th 

You'll arrive at the University of San Francisco's Faculty Lounge 
between 2-3pm to check-in and receive a welcome packet including a copy of the book by our keynote speaker, Rhonda Magee. 
PBJN Retreat Check-in
The Retreat check-in will open at 2pm on Tuesday, December 10th outside of the University of San Francisco (USF) Faculty and Staff Dining Room and Lounge located in the University Center (UC), Room 222.

All activities on Day 1, Tuesday Dec 10th, will be held in the Faculty/Staff Dining Room and Lounge including welcome at 3:30pm, keynote at 4:30pm, and dinner at 6pm. 
  • After a warm welcome with new and familiar faces, we'll set up context by sharing the history of the Network, our shared purpose and values and talk about how the work is going for us. 
  • Rhonda Magee, Professor of Law at the University of San Francisco and an internationally-recognized thought and practice leader focused on integrating mindfulness into higher education, law and social change work will discuss her new book, The Inner Work of Racial JusticeAn essential mindfulness and compassion-based approach to confront racial injustice and work towards healing from 4:30-6pm. 
  • We'll close Tuesday night with dinner in the Faculty Dining Room on campus from 6-7:30pm or so. 
Day Two: Wednesday, Dec 11th
  • We'll start with breakfast at 8:30am in Getty Study, LoSchiavo (LS 104)
  • The morning session will feature facilitation from the Next Generation Fellows (pictured above) from 9-10:30am 
    • AyeNay Abye, Seattle University (Lead)
    • John Loggins, University of San Diego (Lead)
    • Irene Cermeño, Santa Clara University
    • Roxanne De La Torre, Fordham University
    • Jonathan Delgago, Fairfield University
    • LaShaune Johnson, Creighton University
    • Anthony Medina, Gonzaga University
    • Demetri Morgan, Loyola University Chicago
  • After a break, we'll transition to Kalmanovitz Hall for racial caucusing: People of Color Healing Circle (facilitated by Julie Hurst and Nolizwe Nondabula) room KA 309) and White Affinity Group (facilitated by Erin O'Keefe and Erin Burrows, room KA 365) will be held for 90 minutes. 
  • At 12:30 pm we'll transition to lunch (available in boxes outside KA 309), and then travel to Alamo Square for a series of site visits coordinated by staff and partners of Engage San Francisco, led by Karin Cotterman and Nolizwe Nondabula.  Note, please wear comfortable shoes and bring layers; the sun will set before 5 pm
    •  Provide an overview of Engage San Francisco
    • Learn about the history of Fillmore/ Western Addition
    • Learn about how USF and the Western Addition are connected
    • Highlight the work of some of our community partners
    • Illuminate how oppressive practices & policies have impacted the Western Addition.
  • We'll close at 5:30pm in the neighborhood for dinner on your own or with a small group from the Retreat
Day Three: Thursday, December 12th 
  • We'll start with breakfast at 8:30am in the Faculty and Staff Dining Room (UC 222)
  • The morning session will be led by Kent Koth to explore the structure and future of the Network with questions such as:
    • What are the topics should we focus on in the next few years?
    • What’s our strategy to influence the field of place-based community engagement? 
    • How do we sustain the network?
  • We'll transition to lunch at noon, where boxes will be available for participants who need to head to the airport.
  • We will officially close at 12:45pm with plans to connect over Zoom and at the 2020 Summer Institute! 


Place-Based Justice Network 2018 Winter Leadership Retreat Recap 

The most recent network retreat was hosted by Saint Mary's College of California between December 12-14.

Participants contributed to facilitated communal conversation regarding the goals of the network and how to implement shared values through discussions of:

  • Co-creation of knowledge: What does it mean? What does it look like from the point of view of member partners? How does out anti-racist, anti-oppression lens affect how we co-create?
  • Finding a vocabulary of joy: How do you celebrate success and sustain your community during challenges in place-based work?
  • Humility vs. Fragility: What can polarities management tell us about ourselves as leaders from privileged institutions of place-based work?
  • What is Liberation? What can it look like in the context of place-based work? 

A college of photos from the Winter Retreat 2019

Photos from the 2018 Place-Based Justice Network winter leadership retreat - find more photos here

Place-Based Justice Network 2018 Summer Leadership Retreat Recap

The 2018 summer retreat for the network was hosted by Loyola University Maryland between August 8th-10th.

  • Participants heard a welcome address by Rev. Brian Linnane, S.J., President, Loyola University Maryland
  • Michael P. Scott, founder of Baltimore-based Equity Matters, and leader for the Baltimore Place Matters Team presented on promoting equity in all policies, particularly those related to racism, housing, and education.
  • Members attended break out sessions and site visits which challenged them to consider:
    • ​How do our multitude of intersecting identities impact our work with place-based community engagement? 
    • What lessons have we learned from starting a place-based initiative?
    • ​How do we reconcile scholarship and social change efforts?
    • How do we engage campus and community in an ethical and effective way while
      recognizing identities and power?
    • How do we attain the resources for success while remaining true to our purpose? ​How do we support
      the university’s mission and financial well-being?
    • ​How do we make timely and clear decisions while including as many voices as possible?
    • ​How do our multitude of intersecting identities impact our work with place-based community engagement?
    • How do we balance qualitative and quantitative information in how we talk about our work and make decisions?
    • ​How do we balance our emphasis and impact on our neighborhoods and on University participants?
    • How do we empower faculty and community to give of themselves, their time, their expertise--and also value time, labor, and expertise equitably?

View the full schedule from the 2018 summer leadership retreat here

Place-Based Justice Network Summer Institute 2018 - Loyola University Maryland

Find more photos from the 2018 Place-Based Justice Network summer leadership retreat here

Place-Based Justice Network 2017 Summer Leadership Retreat Recap

The 2017 Summer retreat for the network was hosted by Seattle University between June 6th-8th.

  • Panelists discussed different approaches to Place-Based community engagement
  • Members considered the differences between place-based and faith-based
  • Members participated in facilitated discussions which discussed
    • Place-Based community engagement when partner neighborhood is not campus-adjacent
    • Strategies for funding, planning, and engaging a place-based intuitive
    • Key differences between anchor institutes and place-based initiatives
    • Transforming university systems and structures to support place-based initiatives
    • Race and place-based engagement 
  • Members visited neighboring sites to see and discuss community partnerships in action
  • discussion closed for the weekend with a discussion on place-based initiatives gong forward, and a look at network values and goals.

View the full schedule from the 2017 summer leadership retreat here

A collection of photos from the 2017 leadership retreat

Photos from the 2017 Place-Based Justice Network summer leadership retreat - find more photos here

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