Stephen Meyers is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Law, Societies, and Justice and at the Jackson School of International Studies. Professor Meyers is also affiliated faculty in the Disability Studies Program. He earned his PhD in Sociology from the University of California. Prior to pursuing his doctorate, he worked for an international non-governmental organization supporting landmine survivors and other persons with disabilities in Central America and Africa and has since worked as a consultant for other non-governmental organizations and a United Nations agency on issues of disability inclusion. He, with Megan McCloskey, recently coauthored Young Persons with Disabilities: Global Study on Ending Gender-based Violence and Realizing Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (2018) for the UN Population Fund: https://www.unfpa.org/publications/young-persons-disabilities
Professor Meyers’ research focuses on grassroots associations of persons with disabilities working at the local level and their interactions with international organizations promoting the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which was passed in 2006. Through his ethnographic research in Nicaragua, he explores the diverse pulls local disabled persons organizations (DPOs) negotiate as international NGOs pressure them to prioritize political advocacy and the pursuit of new legal protections, yet many of the DPOs’ own members and the larger Nicaraguan civic culture expect these same grassroots associations to focus on service provision and traditional forms of material support. This research can be found in both sociology and disability studies journals, including Qualitative Sociology, Disability Studies Quarterly, International Journal of Politics, Culture, and Society, Research in Social Science and Disability, and so forth. Professor Meyers has also published on youth with disabilities in Cambodia and Indonesia and on the larger issue of disability inclusion in international development.
In addition to his interests regarding grassroots disability associations in developing countries, Professor Meyers has begun research on two other topics. Recently, he has begun looking at the care of inmates with disabilities in US prisons and the growing international movement promoting the human rights of older persons in low-income countries.