SARS researcher to deliver next Division of Social Science lecture

The next speaker scheduled in the Division of Social Science Fall 2005 Lecture Series will be Lesley Jacobs, director of the Graduate Program in Social and Political Thought and a professor of law and society in the Division of Social Science.

Jacobs’ lecture is titled “Rights at Work during the SARS Crisis: Legal Consciousness in Hong Kong, Toronto, and Shanghai”. Jacobs will discuss his research which found that more people were quarantined in Toronto during the 2003 SARS outbreak – and with less regard to their rights – than in either Hong Kong or Shanghai, the other two most affected cities. From 20,000 to 30,000 people were quarantined in Toronto, versus about 1,200 people in Hong Kong. For more on his reseach, see the July 6 issue of YFile.

The talk will take place on Thursday, Oct. 20, in S752 Ross Bldg., starting at 2:30pm.

In addition to his work in the classroom, Jacobs also leads the Canada team of researchers on a major collaborative research project with Japanese and Chinese law and society researchers. The group is comparing human rights and international trade disputes in Canada, China and Japan. The project is funded by SSHRC and based at the Institute of Asian Research at the University of British Columbia.

An accomplished author, Jacobs’ books include Rights and Deprivation (Oxford University Press, 1993); The Democratic Vision of Politics (Simon Schuster/Prentice-Hall, 1997); and Pursuing Equal Opportunities (Cambridge University Press, 2004). Both The Democratic Vision of Politics and Pursuing Equal Opportunities have been translated into Chinese.

Jacobs completed his PhD in politics at the University of Oxford and came to York in 1993, after holding full-time teaching positions at Oxford’s Magdalen College and the Department of Political Science, University of British Columbia.

He has held visiting fellowships at a range of universities including the University of California, Berkeley (1993), the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, Oxford University (1994), and the Harvard Law School (1997-1998).

For further information, contact Jane McMillan, professor, Division of Social Science, Faculty of Arts at ext. 33581 or e-mail