Saghar Birjandian

Founder and Consultant

Problem Analysis, Transitional Justice, and Atrocities Prevention

Saghar Sara Birjandian is the Founder of Collaborative Social Change and a scholar-practitioner with years of experience working on transitional justice and atrocity prevention initiatives in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Uganda. Her areas of specialization include decolonial and participatory approaches to problem analysis for policy development, qualitative research, and strategic advocacy to promote justice processes that individuals and communities affected by atrocity violence prioritize for sustainable peace.

She is currently a Charles E. Scheidt Postdoctoral Research and Teaching Fellow at the Institute for Genocide and Mass Atrocity Prevention, State University of New York at Binghamton. Her research and teaching focus on developing and applying decolonial and critical approaches to transitional justice policy development that evade mainstream and non-mainstream prescriptions. She is also a Consultant at the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation housed at the University of Manitoba, where she is helping to develop a comprehensive guide and facilitating training for statement gathering.

She previously worked with the Government of British Columbia on an institutional reform project that aims to reduce the number of Indigenous children in government care. Saghar also had the honour of serving as Statement Gatherer for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, where she documented mass atrocities committed against Indigenous children, youth, and families through Canada’s colonial Residential “School” system. She also served as Director of George Mason University’s (GMU) Genocide Prevention Network and Deputy Director of GMU’s Genocide Prevention Program.

Saghar holds a PhD in Politics and International Studies from the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies. She completed her Master of Science in Global Affairs with a concentration in International Law and Human Rights at New York University and her Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy with a concentration in Ethics and Legal Philosophy at the University of Victoria, Canada.

Collaborative publications

Conflict management

Facilitative mediation

Policy analysis

Program development

Strategic advocacy

Community dialogue

Course & Curriculum development and design (post-secondary level)

Fieldwork/Field research

Policy research

Qualitative research

Soft Systems Mapping

Community mobilization

Culturally sensitive mediation

Participatory Policy Development

Problem-mapping for Policy and Strategy Development

Shuttle diplomacy


Conflict analysis


Public lectures

Program analysis

Speech writing