December 15, 2022: In 2022, the Zoryan Institute celebrated 40 years in operation with one of its busiest years to date. In addition to its ongoing programming, including but not limited to, webinars, the publication of its two academic journals, Genocide Studies International, and Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies, its 20th annual Genocide and Human Rights University Program, and the 44-Day Artsakh War Oral History Project in Armenia, the Zoryan Institute dedicated significant efforts towards pursuing new educational directions pertaining to the phenomena of genocide, human rights, and diasporas.

Below please find just a few of Zoryan Institute’s highlights from 2021. Explore our website for more information on Zoryan Institute’s programs, projects, publications and initiatives.

The Institute’s Dispersion Podcast launched its first season in January of 2022. Having published its academic journal in the field of Diaspora Studies for 30 years, Dispersion brings conversations surrounding diaspora to a new platform. Speaking to the Podcast’s value as an educational resource, Prof. Shushan Karapetian, Deputy Director of the USC Institute of Armenia Studies stated the following:

“I used an episode as required course material to jumpstart a conversation on the Armenian diaspora & just how heterogenous it is. The pairing of father & daughter, different generations, gender dynamics, upbringings, & so on were just so ripe for discussion… My students had such visceral reactions & it sparked into an excellent conversation in class.”

-PROF. SHUSHAN KARAPETIAN, Deputy Director, USC Institute of Armenia Studies



In March of this year, the Zoryan Institute hosted its first themed instalment of its Genocide and Human Rights Webinar Series to raise awareness about the immense threats climate change presents to humanity and to challenge individuals to address changing conflict dynamics, & mobilize action to safeguard against the projected catastrophic human implications of climate change. Topics covered in the series ranged from displacement and conflict, to ecocide and Indigenous climate justice, to the role of human rights law in limiting climate change. Watch the full series here.

“Climate change requires attention now more than ever as it exacerbates conflictual tensions that have the capacity to fuel genocidal violence. In spite of this, finite spaces have been constructed through which to unpack the impending relationship between these phenomena, rendering the webinar series hosted by the Zoryan Institute on the topic all the more important.”

-LAUREN GRANT, 2021 GHRUP Graduate, Director of Field Research, Earth Refuge

With the financial support of Ontario’s Ministry of Education, the Institute expanded its genocide and human rights educational programming to high school level audiences in 2022. Through its Promoting Equity, Tolerance, Reconciliation, and Awareness Through Genocide Education Program, with the support of five GHRUP alumni, the Institute delivered interactive presentations to over 20 high school classrooms across the Greater Toronto Area. It also developed a comprehensive online resource page, with educational videos, lesson plans and background information for secondary school educators and students. The Institute aims to continue this programming in 2023, and is pursuing teacher training opportunities to equip secondary level educators with the tools and knowledge necessary to educate and engage young generations in issues of human rights and genocide in a responsible and meaningful way.

40 years after the Zoryan Institute launched its Armenian Genocide Oral History Project, the second feature length film based on interviews from the collection is now complete and in the international film festival circuit. Aurora’s Sunrise, produced by Bars Media in partnership with the Zoryan Institute, brings the story of an incredible survivor from its oral history collection, Aurora Mardiganian, to life on the big screen, to empower and inspire the young women and girls of today to represent their communities in the face of great adversity and violence.

We are immensely grateful to our donors whose generous contributions allow the Institute to continue its work in Canada, the United States and Armenia. Going forward, the Institute hopes to expand on its current initiatives to build on its past 40 years of impact and remain at the forefront of scholarship and education on the most pertinent issues impacting humanity today. Please consider supporting the Institute annually to allow for the sustainability of Zoryan Institute’s programs. Visit this page to donate today. Donors will receive a tax deductible receipt for their contribution (if in Canada or the United States).

On behalf of the Zoryan Institute Board of Directors, executives, staff and volunteers, we thank you for your ongoing and generous support. We wish you and your loved ones a joyful holiday season and all the very best for the New Year.