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Researcher / Research team

Ethel Tungohan


Winner – 2014 National Women’s Studies Association/University of Illinois Press First Book Prize

Ethel Tungohan is the Grant Notley Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Alberta’s Department of Political Science. She received her doctoral degree in Political Science and Women and Gender Studies from the University of Toronto. Her current research looks at national and transnational activist pursuits of migrant domestic workers. She is also engaged in a SSHRC funded research project, in partnership with Gabriela Ontario, York University, and Ryerson University, examining women’s experiences transitioning beyond the Live-In Caregiver Program in Canada. Her research interests include: Labour Migration, Migration and Global Diaspora Studies, Public Policy, Canadian Politics, and Race, Class, Sex and Gender Analysis.

Major Research Grants
2014-2015 Worldwide Universities Network Value: CAD $16,000 Research Fund (Co-applicant)

Caregivers Transitioning out of the Live-In Caregiver Program.”
Project: “Addressing Multiple Forms of Migrant Precarity – Beyond ‘Management’ of Migration to an Integrated Rights-Based Approach.”

Grant Notley Postdoctoral Research Fellowship Value: CAD $92,000 Project: “The Temporary Foreign Worker Program: A Critical Analysis of Temporary Foreign
Work from the Perspectives of Migrant Workers, Civil Society, and Policymakers.” Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Value: CAD $144,900
Insight Development Grant (Co-applicant)

Project: “From Migrant to Citizen: Learning from the Experiences of Former Filipina Live-in
Migrant Care Worker Activism in Canada: From the Politics of Everyday Resistance to the Politics from Below. Champaign, IL: University of Illinois Press (under contract).

Authored Books

Containing Diversity: Canada and the Politics of Immigration in the 21st Century. Toronto, ON: University of Toronto Press (under contract), with Yasmeen Abu-Laban & Christina Gabriel.

Journal Publications

“After the Live-in Caregiver Program: Filipina Caregivers’ Experiences of Uneven and Graduated Citizenship.” Canadian Ethnic Studies (forthcoming).
“Reconceptualizing Motherhood, Reconceptualizing Resistance: Migrant Domestic Workers, Transnational Hyper-Maternalism, and Activism.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 15 (1): 39-57 (2013).
“Is Global Sisterhood Elusive? A Critical Assessment of the Transnational Women’s Rights Movement.” Atlantis: Canadian Journal of Women’s Studies 34 (2): 104-114 (2010).
“Intersectionality and Social Justice: Assessing Activists’ Use of Intersectionality through Grassroots Migrants’ Organizations in Canada.” (Revise and Resubmit).

Edited Book
Disturbing Invisibility: Filipinos in Canada. Toronto, ON: University of Toronto Press (2012), with Roland Coloma, Bonnie McElhinny, JP Catungal, & Lisa Davidson.

Book Chapters

“Debunking Notions of Migrant ‘Victimhood’: A Critical Assessment of Temporary Labour
Migration Programs and Filipina Migrant Activism in Canada,” in Roland Coloma, Bonnie McElhinny, Ethel Tungohan, JP Catungal & Lisa Davidson (eds.), Disturbing Invisibility: Filipinos in Canada. Toronto, ON: University of Toronto Press,
pp. 161-180 (2012).

“Protecting Temporary Labour Migrants: An Emerging Role for Global Cities,” in Harald Bauder (ed.), Immigration and Settlement: Challenges, Experiences, and Opportunities in Global and Local Contexts. Toronto, ON: Canadian Scholars Press, pp. 75-93. (2012).
“Spectres of (In)visibility: Filipina/o Labour, Culture, and Youth in Canada,” in Roland Coloma, Bonnie McElhinny, Ethel Tungohan, JP Catungal & Lisa Davidson (editors), Disturbing Invisibility: Filipinos in Canada. Toronto, ON: University of Toronto Press, pp. 5-45 (2012). With Bonnie McElhinny, Lisa Davidson, JP Catungal, & Roland Coloma.
“International Approaches to Governing Temporary Labour Migrants: A Critical Assessment of the UN Committee on Migrant Workers, the ILO Conventions on Labour Migration, and the International Migrants Alliance,” in Will Kymlicka & Jane Boulden (editors), International Approaches to Governing Ethnic Diversity. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press (In Press).

Working Papers
“Global Migration and Development: Is Co-Development the Answer?” Global Tensions, Global Possibilities: Everyday Forces of Conformity and Contestation. Hamilton, ON: Institute of Globalization and the Human Condition (2008).
“Gender, Migration, and Co-Development: Making the Case for Gender-Responsive Co- Development.” United Nations INSTRAW Working Paper: Gender, Remittances, and Migration. Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic: UN-INSTRAW (2008).
“Special Procedures of the United Nations Commission of Human Rights.” Transparency International Report on Follow-Up Process on United Nations Convention on Corruption. Geneva, Switzerland: Transparency International (2007).

Book Reviews
“Strangers at the Gates: Movements and States in Contentious Politics by Sydney Tarrow.” Social Movements (2014).
“Producing and Negotiating Non-Citizenship: Precarious Legal Status in Canada by Luin Goldring and Patricia Landolt.” Law and Politics Book Review (2013).
“Emigration: Economic Implications by T. Ramachandra Shastri.” Atlantis (2009).
“Feminist Social and Political Theory by Janice McLaughlin.” Women’s Studies Network (2004).

Select Conference Presentations
“The Migrant Domestic Workers’ Movement in Canada: Transgressive Rebellions and Strategic Compromises.” National Women’s Studies Association Annual Conference. San Juan,
“Migrant Domestic Worker Activism in Canada and the Use of Intersectionality.” American Political Science Association Annual Conference. Washington, DC. August 2014.
“Migrant Women in the Global South.” Berkshire Women’s History Conference. Toronto, ON. May 2014.
“Organizing Migrant Care Workers’ Interests in Canada.” Canadian Political Science Association Conference. St. Catherine’s, ON. May 2014.
“Evaluating What’s Next When Thinking About Intersectionality: Can Intersectionality Bridge the Gap Between Research and Activism?” International Intersectionality Conference. Vancouver, BC. April 2014.
“Migrant Care Workers’ Resistance to Neoliberalism through the Politics of the Everyday and the Politics from Below.” Western Political Science Association. Seattle, Washington.
April 2014.
“Migrant Workers’ Strike Back: Migrant Workers’ Search for Alternative Political and Economic Organizing through Civil Society Action.” Western Political Science Association Conference. Los Angeles, California. April 2013.
Caring across Borders: Examining the Relationships of Migrant Mothers and Migrant Children During and After Temporary Labour Migration.” British Sociological Association. Leeds, United Kingdom. April 2012.
“Political Inclusion, Social Change, and ‘Being Filipino’: A Critical Assessment of Filipina Live-in Caregivers’ Activism.” Association for Canadian Studies and Canadian Ethnic Studies Association Joint Annual Conference. Toronto, Ontario. November 2010.
“Protecting Temporary Labour Migrants: An Emerging Role for Global Cities.” Migration and the Global City. Toronto, Ontario. October 2010.
“International Approaches to Governing International Migrants, Ethnicity, and Gender: An Intersectional Analysis of Migrants’ Rights.” Ethnicity and Democratic Governance Roundtable: International Approaches to Governing Ethnic Diversity – Security, Democracy, and Minority Rights. Kingston, Ontario. September 2010.
“(Un)Coordinated Chaos?: A Critical Assessment of Federalism and Canadian Temporary Labour Migration Programs.” Canadian Political Science Association Conference. Montreal, Quebec. June 2010.

Invited Presentations
“Labour Migration and the Transnational Demand for Domestic Labour.” Justice in the Home: Domestic Work Past, Present, and Future, Barnard Centre for Research for Women and National Domestic Workers Alliance Conference. New York, NY. October 2014.
“Working with Migrant Activist Groups Using Participatory Action Research and Feminist Interpretive Methodologies.” Methods, Data, and the Study of Migration and Citizenship
in Political Science, American Political Science Association Short Course. Washington, DC. August 2014.

Media Coverage of Research
“Foreign Caregivers Backlog Grows as Families Wait for Residency.” CBC News. October 19, 2014. < http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/foreign-caregivers-backlog-grows-as-families- wait-for-residency-1.2778317?cmp=rss>
“Changes to the Live-in Caregiver Program Help No One.” With Petronila Cleto and Conely de Leon. Rabble.ca. September 1, 2014. <>
“Leave Nannies Alone.” With Petronila Cleto and Conely de Leon. National Post, p. A10. August 20, 2014.
“Is the Live-in Caregiver Program the Filipino-Canadian community's version of the Chinese head tax?” Rabble.ca. July 30 2014.
“Filipino Canadians fear end of immigrant dreams for nannies.” The Toronto Star, pp. A9. July 22, 2014.
“Changes leave foreign workers more vulnerable.” The Edmonton Journal, pp. A15. July 16, 2014.

2014 National Women’s Studies Association First Book Prize Winner 2011 University of Toronto Doctoral Completion Award
2011 Ethnicity and Democratic Governance Graduate Research Grant 2011 Janka Seydegart Scholarship for Feminist Research
2007–2010 Ontario Graduate Scholarship
2007–2011 University of Toronto Doctoral Fellowship
2009 Frank Peers Political Science Scholarship
2008 Jill Vickers Prize for Best Paper in Gender and Politics at the Canadian Political Science
Association Annual Conference
2007 Students for Development Grant, Canadian International Development Agency
2004 Young Professionals International Internship Program, Department of Foreign Affairs and
International Trade
2003 Graduate Entrance Scholarship, London School of Economics

Teaching Experience
2012 Lecturer, Department of Political Science University of Toronto
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Delivered fourth-year course entitled, “Gender and Public Policy – Canadian and Comparative Approaches.” Course taught students how public policies have divergent impacts on women, men, and other social groups. Students also examine the different ways in which public policies can be made more responsive to gender and diversity concerns. Facilitated weekly seminars that address themes discussed in the lecture.
Teaching Assistant, Political Science Toronto, Ontario, Canada University of Toronto
Responsible for evaluating students by marking their papers, exams, presentations and seminar participation. Provided student support through weekly office hours and email contact.

Work Experience

Co-Investigator / Research Manager Toronto, Ontario, Canada Gabriela Transitions
Experiences Survey
Currently supervising the Gabriela Transition Experiences Survey, a SSHRC Insight Development Grant funded, community-based research project on former live-in caregivers’ settlement and integration issues. This involves supervising and facilitating the collection of 631 completed quantitative surveys across Canada and 50 focus groups with former live-in caregivers as well as acting as the team leader of a group of community researchers across Canada. Delivered courses on research methods to build professional capacity among participating community researchers.
Consultant, Women’s Economic Empowerment Toronto, Ontario, Canada UN Women
Project involved writing a literature review on the issue of women’s economic empowerment in support of Progress of the World’s Women, a biennial report published by UN Women.
Researcher, Filipino Newcomers’ Integration Toronto, Ontario, Canada Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters
Interviewed recent Filipino newcomers on their experiences with workplace integration in Canada. I also wrote a pilot report documenting the workplace experiences of new immigrants and provided a set of policy recommendations for the integration of new immigrants in Canadian workplaces.
Research Assistant, Political Science Toronto, Ontario, Canada University of Toronto
Wrote summary reports and literature reviews for Professor Sylvia Bashevkin.
Consultant, Migration & Development Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic / Toronto, Canada
United Nations INSTRAW
Reviewed the viability of a gendered approach to co-development, piloted initiatives to make co- development responsive to needs of migrant women, wrote policy briefs.
Researcher, Women’s Health Vancouver, British Colombia Canada BC Centre of Excellence for Women’s Health
Produced various gender and public policy research projects, such as projects that assessed the gendered impacts of tobacco control and substance abuse cessation policies. I also authored peer-reviewed journal articles, World Health Organization papers, press releases.
Intern, Human Rights Education Geneva, Switzerland International Service for Human Rights
Organized the 2006 Advanced Training Course on Human Rights and wrote reports for United Nations Committee meetings.
Human Rights Fellow New Delhi, India South Asian Human Rights Documentation Center
Head researcher for project assessing the situation of Burmese refugees in Delhi using a gendered perspective and team leader for project on National Human Rights Institutions

Administrative and Service Activities

Founder, Canadians for an Inclusive Canada
Reviewer, Canadian Journal of Political Science
Reviewer, Politics, Groups, and Identities
Reviewer, Political Research Quarterly
Reviewer, Women’s Studies International Forum
Reviewer, Ethnic and Racial Studies journal
Member, BRIDGE Gender and Social Movements Discussion Group Member, University of Toronto Gender and Human Rights Working Group Director of Research, Gabriela Ontario
Organizing Committee, Community Alliance for Social Justice
Member, Canadian Politics University of Toronto-Mississauga Search Committee Founding Member, ‘Kritical Kolektibo’, Filipino-Canadian Research Group Chair, Graduate Association for Students in Political Science
Executive Officer, Graduate Association for Students in Political Science





Economic sectors

General relevance - all sectors

Content types

Policy analysis

Target groups

(Im)migrants workers, Policymakers, Public awareness, Researchers, and NGOs/community groups/solidarity networks

Geographical focuses

Ontario and Alberta


English and Tagalog