Henry Parada’s experience includes working in the Caribbean and Central America on issues of child protection, human rights, and youth participation. He teaches both undergraduate and graduate courses at Ryerson University, and is also a regular guest lecturer at universities in the Dominican Republic.
His research interests include: analysis of institutional practices, social work epistemology and institutional ethnography methodology. He has published in the area of child protection and governance of workers and clients, institutional ethnography, the construction of subject locations, and community social work and education in Latin American.
His projects have received funds from Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), Global Affairs Canada (formerly the Canadian International Development Agency), Latin American and Caribbean Exchange Grant (LACREG), UNICEF-Santo Domingo, Italy International Cooperation, Ryerson International Initiative Funds and Network of European Foundations.
Henry Parada’s program of research – focused on child protection, family violence, and children’s rights – has been directly shaped by his theoretical training in sociology, his on-the-ground social work experiences, and his personal ties to the Caribbean region and Latin American culture. In particular, his combined research expertise includes the areas of social development, children’s and women’s social welfare and violence prevention.
Informed by his career as a social worker in Toronto during the 1990s when the Ontario government implemented significant child welfare reforms, his doctoral thesis was an institutional ethnography of the Ontario child welfare system. Useful for understanding the ways that people function within and across institutions, his utilization of institutional ethnography yielded valuable insights about how these policy reforms limited both the professional autonomy of social workers and their ability to respond to their client needs.
The substance of his research program since the completion of his doctorate has focused on using similar methodologies for understanding the limitations of the child and family protection systems in the Dominican Republic and working collaboratively with various levels of government, and community based and international non-profit organizations to increase the country’s capacity (through policy, social work practice and personal empowerment) to protect the rights of women and children. Specifically, his main area of concern is developing the capacity of Dominican civil society to deal with the problem of trafficking children for the purposes of sexual and labour exploitation.
He is currently involved in a large scale SSHRC funded Partnership Grant aimed at increasing knowledge of factors which support or hinder the protection of children and youth rights in the Caribbean, Central America, as well as the diaspora populations in Canada, which are disproportionately represented in the Canadian child protection system.
Analysis of institutional practices
Social work epistemology
Teaching responsibilities (Canada):
Teaching responsibilities (International):
Barrett-Herman, A., Littlechild, B., Parada, H., Leung, P., Wairire, G. (2014). Social Work Education: Process, Findings and Implications of the IASSW 2010 Census Project. International Social Work.
Wehbi, S., Parada.H., George, P., Lessa, I. (2014). Going home(?): Social Work Across and About Borders. International Social Work.
Carranza, M., Lopez, L., Parada, H., Jiménez, I. (2013). Granada, a City Under Siege: Dynamics of the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children as a Human Rights Issue In Nicaragua. Journal of Global citizenship and Equity Education Vol. 3 No 1.
Parada, H., Saracostti, M., Reininger, T. (2012) Guest Editors, Social Work in Latin America. International Social Work. 53(3).