Political Science

Faculty and staff

Back to Faculty and staff

Fiona MacDonald

Fiona MacDonald

Department Head, Associate Professor

Political Science

Abbotsford campus, D3093

Phone: 604.504.7441, local 4173

email Fiona


Dr. Fiona MacDonald (PhD UBC) is an Associate Professor specializing in Political Theory at the University of the Fraser Valley. Prior to her current appointment she was an Assistant Professor in Canadian Politics at the University of Manitoba. Dr. MacDonald co-edited the Finding Feminisms special issue of the Canadian Journal of Political Science (June 2017) which includes her article, “Knocking Down Walls in Political Science: In Defense of an Expansionist Feminist Agenda.” Her other publications can be found in the journals Hypatia, Citizenship Studies, Constellations, and Canadian Public Administration. Her article “Indigenous Peoples and Neoliberal ‘Privatization’ in Canada: Opportunities, Cautions and Constraints” won the 2012 John McMenemy Prize for the best article published in volume 44 of the Canadian Journal of Political Science.

Current Projects: 

Turbulent Times, Transformational Opportunities? Gender and Politics Today and Tomorrow. Forthcoming with University of Toronto Press, Spring 2020.

Co-editor (with Professor Alexandra Dobrowolsky, Saint Mary’s University).

This edited collection features state-of-the art scholarship by diverse contributors examining gender politics from a variety of intersections including: Indigenous standpoints, race, disability, environmental feminisms, transfeminisms, political parties and institutions, multiculturalism, body size and fat politics, and queer social movements.


The Alt-Right, Toxic Masculinity, and Violence

Co-author (with Associate Professor, John Grant, King’s University College, Western University).

This chapter for the forthcoming Turbulent Times, Transformative Opportunities collection with University of Toronto Press explores the politics of masculinity by considering and reflecting on the complex interplay between dominant notions of "being a man" and far right political movements. We regard these movements as deeply populist. Our depiction of populism reveals it to be the predominant political vehicle for masculinity, while masculinity stands as a quotidian expression of populism. It follows that masculinity is central to understanding how men become involved in far right or "alternative" right movements and it is equally central in understanding how they might get out.


More than Words? Patient Insights on the Impact of Medical Apology

Co-researcher (with Associate Professor Karine Levasseur, University of Manitoba).

While apology legislation is now well established legally in Canada, very little is known about the ramifications of apologies on various stakeholders, or the impact that apology legislation has on health care. Moreover, it is unknown whether these impacts are differentiated for specific patient groups, most notably Indigenous populations whom, research consistently shows, often experience highly differentiated processes and outcomes in healthcare generally. This project will fill the current knowledge gap on apology legislation by collecting data through trauma informed qualitative interviews with various stakeholders (Indigenous and non-Indigenous) on the impact of medical apologies.


“Mea Culpa: Apology Legislation, Accountability and CareCanadian Journal of Political Science Canadian Journal of Political Science1-21. June 2018. Co-authored with Dr. Karine Levasseur.  https://doi.org/10.1017/S0008423918000227https://doi.org/10.1017/S0008423918000227

“Knocking Down Walls in Political Science: In Defense of an Expansionist Feminist Agenda” Canadian Journal of Political Science 50:02 (Special Issue on Finding Feminisms). June 2017.  https://doi.org/10.1017/S0008423916001190https://doi.org/10.1017/S0008423916001190

“Finding Feminism(s) in Canadian Political Science Scholarship: Diversity and Resistance in an Era of Global Uncertainty” (Introduction by guest editorial team) Canadian Journal of Political Science 50:02 (Special Issue on Finding Feminisms). June 2017. Co-authored with Alexandra Dobrowolsky, Tracey Raney, Cheryl Collier, and Pascale Dufour. 

“Potential through Paradox: Indigenous Rights as Human Rights” Citizenship Studies 20: 6-7 February 2016. Co-authored with Ben Wood.  https://doi.org/10.1080/13621025.2016.1139056

“Democratic Multinationalism: a Political Approach To Indigenous –State Relations” Constellations 21:4 December 2014.  https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-8675.12095

“Accountability Insights from the Devolution of Indigenous Child Welfare in Manitoba" Canadian Public Administration 57: 1 March 2014. Co-authored with Dr. Karine Levasseur.

“Indigenous Peoples and Neoliberal ‘Privatization’ in Canada: Opportunities, Cautions and Constraints” Canadian Journal of Political Science 44:2 June 2011.  https://doi.org/10.1017/S000842391100014X

“Relational Group Autonomy: Ethics of Care and the Multiculturalism Paradigm” Hypatia 25:1 January 2010. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1527-2001.2010.01091.x

“The Manitoba Government’s Shift to ‘Autonomous’ First Nations Child Welfare: Empowerment or Privatization?” in First Nations, First Thoughts (edited volume), UBC Press 2009.



“Why is it so hard for your doctor to apologize?”, The Conversation, October 2, 2019  https://theconversation.com/why-is-it-so-hard-for-your-doctor-to-apologize-123337#comment_2034850

“Hate in Canada and What’s Being Done About It” Panelist, Breakfast Television, Citytv, June 24, 2019  https://www.btvancouver.ca/videos/hate-in-canada-whats-being-done-about-it/

“MacDonald and Ashe: Wilson-Raybould and Philpott are Showing us What Feminist Governance Looks Like”. Ottawa Citizen, March 5 2019.  https://ottawacitizen.com/opinion/columnists/macdonald-and-ashe-wilson-raybould-and-philpott-are-showing-us-what-feminist-governance-looks-like?fbclid=IwAR3r2GX96ZtszwRRF-UgVyh3yc5Z8NfQgqUF0yrmueTQvfw_tXYpE1EyI30

“Worried About The Alt-Right? Be The Anti-Right”. Vancouver Sun, The Province, The Montreal Gazette, August 15, 2018.  https://vancouversun.com/opinion/op-ed/john-grant-and-fiona-macdonald-worried-about-the-alt-right-be-the-anti-right

“Medical Errors Are Way Too Common But Patients Are Paving The Way For Change”. CBC News, June 22 2018.   https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manitoba/opinion-levasseur-macdonald-patient-safety-1.4718545.   Reprinted as: “Les Erreurs Médicales Sont Chose Courante.” Options Politiques, 23 Juillet, 2018 

CBC Radio Interview “The Current” on Child Welfare Agencies and Indian Residential schools June 16 2010 Available at:  http://www.cbc.ca/thecurrent/2010/06/june-16-2010.html

“Invisible Patients: Caregivers need support too in Canada's health-care system” CBC News, November 2, 2019 https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manitoba/opinion-caregivers-health-system-stress-1.5343669?__vfz=medium%3Dsharebar&fbclid=IwAR0BvXYDVjj-Sf_TGyU8Z-HXdd9tbKd_lo5ZDy-vPGEIRfMONeiwNdBXzdU

 “How Justin Trudeau’s Apology Suggests Potential for Change.” CBC News, September 25, 2019 https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manitoba/karine-levasseur-and-fiona-macdonald-1.5296414


Back to Faculty and staff

Contact Us