Photo of Shezan Muhammedi

Shezan Muhammedi

Adjunct Research Professor – History of migration; Canadian refugee history; oral history, migration and ethnic relations.

Degrees:B.A. (Queen’s University), M.A. (University of Western Ontario), Ph.D. (University of Western Ontario)


Dr. Shezan Muhammedi completed his PhD in History and Migration and Ethnic Relations at the University of Western Ontario in April 2017. His dissertation explores the resettlement of Ugandan Asian refugees in Canada in the 1970s. His mother’s family came to Ottawa, Ontario as Ugandan Asian refugees in late October of 1972 fuelling his passion for displaced peoples and vulnerable communities. He also worked closely with Carleton University’s MacOdrum Library team as an advisor to their Uganda Collection which features archival material, newspapers, and oral histories of Ugandan Asian refugees.

Upon completion of his PhD, Dr. Muhammedi spent four years working for an international non-profit organization called Focus Humanitarian Assistance under the Aga Khan Development Network as a Program Officer on the European Settlement Support Program. He led a team of 15 case workers who worked on a one-to-one basis with refugees who settled in Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands, and Sweden. The program aimed to support newly arrived asylum seekers and refugees in Europe by offering assistance in securing legal status, finding accommodations, mastering the national language, and entering pathways to employment.

To celebrate the upcoming 50th anniversary of the resettlement of Ugandan Asian refugees in Canada, a joint academic and community-based conference will be held in November 2022 at Carleton University. Beyond Resettlement: Exploring the History of the Ugandan Asian Community in Exile aims is to yield insights on pathways to integration and belonging for refugee communities in Canada. Panels will focus on the historical context of the expulsion, Canada’s response and reception of refugees, and the lived experiences of the community in Canada. The event will also showcase archival materials including oral histories, digital exhibits, primary source materials, and other artifacts. Dr. Muhammedi currently serves as a co-chair for the conference committee and is being supported by a group of scholars from Carleton University and the University of Ottawa.

Currently, Dr. Muhammedi works for Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada as a policy analyst and was a successful candidate through the Recruitment of Policy Leaders Campaign in 2021.

Selected Publications

  • Muhammedi, Shezan. ‘Gifts from Amin’: The Resettlement, Integration, and Identities of Ugandan Asian Refugees in Canada. Winnipeg: University of Manitoba Press, forthcoming.
  • Boeva, Yana, Devon Elliott, Edward Jones-Imhotep, Shezan Muhammedi, and William J. Turkel. “Doing History by Reverse Engineering Electronic Devices,” in Making Humanities Matter, edited by Jentery Sayers. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2017.
  • Muhammedi, Shezan. Review of Anderson, Christopher G., Canadian Liberalism and the Politics of Border Control, 1867–1967, British Journal of Canadian Studies 29, no. 1, 2016, pp. 131.
  • Turkel, William J., Shezan Muhammedi & Mary Beth Start. “Grounding Digital History in the History of Computing.” IEEE Annals of the History of Computing, April-June 2014.
  • Muhammedi, Shezan. Review of Johnston, Hugh J. M., Jewels of the Qila. H-Canada, H-Net Reviews. February, 2014: