Shay Cannedy





PhD Southern Methodist University 2016

PhD, Anthropology, Southern Methodist University, 2016
MA, Anthropology, Southern Methodist University
MA, Anthropology, San Francisco State University
BA, Religious Studies and Anthropology, Antioch College

Title of Dissertation: "Our Motherland is Dying": Claiming Refugee Deservingness in the Congolese Diaspora

Region of Study:

North America
African Diaspora


Shay Cannedy's research and teaching focus on globalization and human mobility, with specific interest in forced migration, border securitization, and migrant social movements. Her work with diasporic refugee populations spans over ten years, encompassing both academic and applied projects with multiple immigrant and refugee communities located in the United States and Europe. Her current project considers the implicit logics undergirding state and public perceptions of refugee deservingness in Ireland and how African migrants strategize for refugee recognition in an era of tightened borders.

Entered program in 2009

Honors and Awards:

Extramural Research Grants
National Science Foundation Dissertation Improvement Grant, 2013

The Reed Foundation Ruth Landes Memorial Research Fund for Dissertation Research, 2013

Other Grants and Fellowships
SMU Dissertation Writing Fellowship, 2015-2016

Student Development Grant, Office of Research and Graduate Studies, SMU, 2012 and 2015

Steed Travel Award, Department of Anthropology, SMU, 2012

Kemper Endowment Fund for Research in Social and Cultural Anthropology, Pre-dissertation Research Grant, 2011

Dedman College Graduate Student Assembly Award, SMU, 2010, 2012, and 2015

Maguire and Irby Family Public Service Award, SMU, 2010

Associated Students Award, San Francisco State University, 2003

Bonner Scholar Award, Antioch College, 1997

Research Awards
SMU Research Day first place prize for poster presentation "Burmese Refugees and Healthcare in Dallas" (with Carina Heckert and Laura Jarvis), 2011


Academic Publications
Forthcoming "Debating Refugee Deservingness in Post-Celtic Tiger Ireland." In Messy Europe: Whiteness and Crisis in a Postcolonial World. Eds. Kristín Loftsdóttir, Andrea Smith, and Brigitte Hipfl (Berghahn Books).

2011 Crafting Citizens: Resettlement Agencies and Refugee Incorporation in the United States." Practicing Anthropology 33(4):29-34.

Book and Film Reviews
Winter 2017. "Refugee Reception in Flucht und Heimat." Cosmologics Magazine, Harvard Divinity School.

Technical Reports
2009 "Refugee Families in Transition: Needs Assessment and Evaluation of Healthy Families Curricula," report for Refugee Services of Texas.

2010 "Burmese Refugees in Dallas: A Pilot Study on Family and Health Issues," report for Texas Health Resources (with Dr. Caroline Brettell, Lisa Haayen, Carina Heckert, Laura Jarvis, Beibei Yang, and Amber Zabka).