Hogeschool van Amsterdam

Urban Vitality

Keynote 1: Roshan Galvaan

Generative Disruption through Occupational Science: Enacting possibilities for deep human connection

Critical interpretations of human occupation in occupational science have grown as the discipline has come to recognize the inequitable consequences of hostile social and political realities.

Occupational science’s position as interdisciplinary has also persisted, with scholars suggesting that collaboration with disciplines and related professions, such as occupational therapy, may forward efforts for social transformation.

This intention of furthering opportunities for equitable participation is reflected in the increasing application of critical and participatory forms of knowledge generation in occupational science. As the discipline builds this trajectory of co-generating knowledge, more epistemic discomfort and delinking is necessary so as to meaningfully locate occupational science from the epistemic vantage point of the South.

Insights generated from scholarship related to human occupation will demonstrate the potential for doing occupational science in ways that reflect pathways to collective, decolonial processes that resist forms of domination.

This generative disruption creates possibilities for deep contextual relevance and  connectedness through revealing multiple paths and truths towards enacting collective

Roshan Galvaan, PhD, BSc (OT), MSc (OT), is a Professor in Occupational Therapy at the University of Cape Town (UCT) Department of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences, Division of Occupational Therapy in Cape Town, South Africa.

She is the previous Head of the Occupational Therapy Division at UCT and, as a transformational leader, she currently leads the Faculty Mental Health Working group. She aims to make critical contributions to the discipline of occupational science and has actively pursued avenues to translate research into practice across professions.
Professor Galvaan theorized community development practice from an occupational perspective leading to the development of the Occupation-based Community Development framework as a guideline for praxis.

In 2015, she received the UCT Social Responsiveness Award, recognizing her longstanding collaborations through engaged scholarship with multiple community partners.Professor Galvaan has lead curriculum change processes in undergraduate and postgraduate teaching, promoting social justice through curriculum development and activism within the university.
She is an alumnus fellow of the W.E.B. Du Bois Research Institute at the Hutchins Centre for African and African American Research at Harvard University.

Her research explicates responses to the complexities of human occupation in relation to contexts of marginalization and exclusion.

In addition to numerous publications, she recently co-edited two books: ‘Concepts in Occupational Therapy: Understanding Southern Perspectives’, a book co-produced with colleagues in India and ‘Partnerships in Action: Transforming learning practices through interdisciplinary collaboration and community engagement’, a book demonstrating the utility of occupational science in improving the quality of basic education in South Africa.

Published by  Faculty of Health 20 June 2019