ConversAction: race matters


ConversAction is a national conference, hosted by Renison University College (as part of our 60th Anniversary celebrations) and the University of Waterloo, focused on anti-racism in the context of Canadian universities. The aim of this conference is to maintain the momentum created by the (e)Race(r) conference hosted by Wilfrid Laurier University on March 21, 2016, in which over 150 delegates, representing 19 post-secondary institutions, participated. We will take as our starting point the report and recommendations arising from that conference.

We are honoured to announce the participation of Dr. Laura Mae Lindo, Dr. Malinda Smith (keynote speaker), and Patrick Case.

For information about each speaker, please visit our speaker page. More details and a complete itinerary will follow.


As with the original conference, our aim is to bring together senior university administrators, particularly Vice-Presidents: Academic and their teams, as well as faculty, staff, and student leaders in anti-racism work; in other words, those who have the ability and authority to return to their institutions and enact real changes based upon our discussions. This conference is action-oriented. While there will be opportunities for education, the goal is to have participants work collaboratively to develop solid plans to further anti-racism work on their campuses and across the wider Canadian university sector.

Duration and format

The conference will take place over two days. The first day will include separate events for students and administrators, and the second day will bring all participants together to cooperatively develop action plans for moving forward in this important work.

Task force and website

One of the most important calls to action to arise from the Laurier conference is for the creation of a sector-wide anti-racism task force. By the end of the conference we hope to have a strong plan for what such a task force would look like, and who might like to be involved in it. As well, we intend to create a dedicated web-page, to be managed by the task force, to keep us on track as we proceed with our anti-racism work.

If you have any questions, or need additional information, please contact Ally Vonk.

November 7, 2019

Inn of Waterloo and Conference Centre, 475 King St N, Waterloo