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Carminda Mac Lorin

General Director, Katalizo

Citizenship education, grassroots mobilization, youth mobilization, civic participation, transnational spaces, social forums, event organization


Le Forum social retisse sa Toile

« Del otro mundo posible… al otro mundo necesario »

"The traditional North-South distinction no longer makes sense today"

Foro Social Mundial: ‘La distinción tradicional Norte-Sur hoy ya no tiene más sentido’

Acknowledging Strength in Plurality: The World Social Forum 2016 Through the Prism of Assemblage Thinking

by Carminda Mac Lorin

Published by Studies in Social Justice

In this article, we contribute to debates regarding the nature and role of the World Social Forum (WSF) in the post-2010 period by employing the prism of assemblage thinking. By using the WSF 2016 held in Montreal, Canada as a case study, we outline the political potential of the assemblage approach, which allows activists and researchers of social justice and contemporary contentious spaces to address some of the intrinsic paradoxes in such mobilizations. The observation of some paradigmatic moments from the WSF 2016 offers a glimpse into the heterogeneity that shapes it. We address elements as diverse as actors' intentionalities, migration policies, urban landscapes, power relations, contents, and absences, arguing that assemblage thinking opens up innovative possibilities for analyzing multidimensional phenomena such as the WSF.


The World Social Forum: the paradoxical quest for strength in plurality The World Social Forum: the paradoxical quest for strength in plurality

by Carminda Mac Lorin

Published by Globalizations

October 21, 2020

In this reflexive essay, I explore how the present and the future of the World Social Forum are intimately related to the ability of its actors to acknowledge and actively address the inherent tensions of open spaces. The former must compose themselves articulating seemingly opposites: ideals shared within the World Social Forum vs. some practices not in accordance with its principles (enhanced in contexts of urgency); claimed horizontality vs. dynamic power relations; internal plurality vs. the need to act in unity to achieve systemic global change, amongst others. I will propose perspectives on how the strength of the WSF can be seen as its capacity to continue building radical hope for a positive shift of paradigm within progressive civil society: from divergences to resilient complementarities.



For fifteen years, Dr. Carminda Mac Lorin has been involved in many international programs committed to improving populations' lives and promoting civic participation through innovative mechanisms. Her main focus has been contributing to global citizenship education by building creative spaces (including numerous workshops, mentoring processes, and participatory events), and processes of citizen empowerment, especially for and by youth. She held a leadership position for the Global Civil Society where she was the general co-coordinator of the World Social Forum (WSF) in Montreal, Canada in 2016, with over 35,000 participants from approximately 120 countries. She is now the General Director of Katalizo, a nonprofit organization, as well as the coordinator of the citizenship education Summer School of the Institut du Nouveau Monde. Mac Lorin has a PhD in applied human sciences from the University de Montréal.


Prize for international involvement of the Rector of the University of Montreal and the Standing Committee on the Status of Women: 2005

Winner of the Forces Avenir competition, Personality advanced degree, Montreal-QC: 2011

Medal winner of the Lieutenant-Governor of Quebec, Montreal-QC: 2011

Research Grants

Doctoral scholarship from the Montreal Research Center on Social Inequalities: 2007 to 2009, 2012 and 2013


  • citizenship education
  • grassroots mobilization
  • youth mobilization
  • civic participation
  • transnational spaces
  • social forums
  • event organization

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