Making Science Work for Social Justice

Making Science Work for Social Justice

A community workshop through the Sojourner Truth School for Social Change Leadership. The original plan was to hold the event at South Congregational Church in Springfield, Mass. COVID-19 forced us to radically reorganize to accommodate the need for physical distancing and social solidarity. We delivered the workshop via Zoom on Sunday, March 28, 2020, 3:00-5:15. A total of 54 people joined the workshop, with 41 completing the entire session.

In addition to making the full recording of the workshop (minus the breakout sessions) available, we are also pleased to share the schedule, slides, and handouts used for the workshop to encourage replication by other organizations. Please scroll to the bottom of the page for all these resources. If you do hold a similar workshop, please let us know! We are excited to learn from your experience.


Making Science Work for Social Justice will explore the principles of ‘solidarity science’ and what it means for our community. We will present a few examples that illustrate how solidarity science solves problems by recognizing the significance of social, political, economic, and cultural contexts and by inviting many people and types of knowledge to the table. Participants will workshop how we can use solidarity science to address the issues we identify in the community, and how we can make science a public good.

Our workshop is intended for a wide audience with diverse perspectives. At the core of solidarity science is ensuring that we are reaching multiple experiences and understandings to solve problems. Our audience is asking how to demand more from the scientific community, how to create coalition, how to listen to each other better, how to critique the role of science in our lives, and rather than asking, “how do we fix this?”, asking, “who do we need at the table to fix this?” Everyone is warmly welcome at this lively, exciting, and provocative workshop – join us!

Tatiana Cheeks, Andrew Cunningham, Stephen Fernandez, Mia Fuentes Deonate, Emma Harnisch, Liz MacFarland, Sigrid Schmalzer, Brian Schultz, Lyn Watts


Introductions (~10 min)
Solidarity Science: Overview of Concepts (~15 min)
Case Study: Mold, Health, and Justice (~20 min)
Breakout Groups (~30 min)
Reconvene: Reports Back (~40 min)
Closing: Solidarity Science and COVID-19 (~15 min)