Plenary Speakers

The International Conference on Interdisciplinary Social Sciences will feature plenary sessions by some of the world’s leading thinkers and innovators in the field, as well as numerous parallel presentations by researchers and practitioners.

Nghana Lewis
Luis Mirón
Peter Stone

Garden Conversations

Plenary Speakers will make formal 30-minute presentations. They will also participate in 60-minute Garden Conversations – unstructured sessions that allow delegates a chance to meet the speakers and talk with them informally about the issues arising from their presentation.

Please return to this page for regular updates.


The Speakers

Nghana Lewis

Nghana Lewis is Suzanne and Stephen Weiss Presidential Fellow and Associate Professor of English and African & African Diaspora Studies at Tulane University. She also directs Tulane’s program for African & African Diaspora Studies. Nghana’s research and teaching engage questions of power in four main areas: black literary & cultural studies, gender relations, HIV/AIDS, and K12 educational policy studies. Her published work uses a variety of methods to probe the relationship of theory to practice and the impact of this nexus in the lives of black people. It endeavors as well to convey Nghana’s deep commitments to community action planning & collaboration and community-based research that respond to public health issues confronting black women and children, specifically. This two-fold investment in matching theory and research to practice and community engagement informs the organizing theme of her current book project, from which she will present: Black Women’s Health in the Age of Hip Hop & HIV/AIDS.


Dr. Luis Mirón

Dr. Luis Mirón joined the faculty of Loyola University New Orleans in 2008. He has previously held professorial and/or administrative appointments at various universities including Florida International University, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and University of California at Berkeley.

Mirón received his doctorate in Latin American studies with an emphasis on the politics and sociology of education from Tulane University in 1986. By training and scholarly orientation, Mirón is a social scientist. He maintains a successful record in forging interdisciplinary teaching, research, and public service initiatives.

Dr.Miró serves as director of the Loyola Institute for Quality and Equity in Public Education, a research-based institute housed at the university. He is a nationally recognized scholar and researcher, whose first book, The Social Construction of Urban Schooling, used empirical data on two types of secondary schools in New Orleans pre-Katrina, "neighborhood high" and "city high." The latter are magnet schools that morphed into charter schools in the city post-Katrina.

Dr.Miró has authored and co-authored several books including Resisting Discrimination: Affirmative Strategies for Principals and Teachers,Race, Identity, and Citizenship and Urban Schools: The New Social Spaces of Resistance. He has also authored articles in a number of prestigious journals including Cultural Studies – Critical Methodologies, Educational Researcher and Educational Theory.

Mirón continues to publish scholarly and empirical work on New Orleans School reform, having presented at the International Conference of Education, Research and Innovations in Madrid and co-authoring an AERA paper entitled, "Post Katrina Education Reform in New Orleans: Social Innovation or Rhetoric."

Mirón is the Dean of the College of Social Sciences at Loyola University New Orleans.


Peter Stone

Peter Stone is currently a Faculty Fellow at the Center for Ethics and Public Affairs at Tulane University. Before that, he taught Political Science at Stanford University for seven years. In the fall of 2011, he will be taking up a position as Ussher Lecturer in Political Science at Trinity College Dublin. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Rochester in 2000. He works in contemporary political theory, with particular interest in theories of justice, democratic theory, rational choice theory, and the philosophy of social science. He has published articles in such journals as the Journal of Political Philosophy, the Journal of Theoretical Politics, Political Theory, Rationality and Society, and Social Theory and Practice. His book The Luck of the Draw: On Lotteries and Decision-Making, was published this year by Oxford University Press.