Current HRI Research

People's Budget of San Jose

The People’s Budget of San José is a collaboration between the Human Rights Institute and Sacred Heart Community Services. The project grew out of social movements and protests in San José and across the country to reexamine community safety and policing.

Click here to see the report in its entirety. [pdf] [pdf]

Cannabis Record Clearance projects

After over 2 years of organizing and research with Human Rights students (Students Against Mass Incarceration [SAMI]), a coalition* of over 20 community organizations and cannabis industry leaders, Congressman Ro Khanna, Supervisor Dave Cortese, and the County DA and Public Defender’s Offices, Santa Clara County proactively expunged or reduced all eligible cannabis records--13,000 cases for over 9,000 people--on April 29th, 2020. Following universal record clearance scheduled for the end of March, Drs. Kinney and Armaline will publish a report in partnership with county agencies on this new online system such that other counties in California might replicate it.

See our Policy Projects page for more information and to see if you qualify!

Alternatives to Policing - Participatory Action Research with the San Francisco Fire Department Community Paramedicine Division

This Participatory Action Research [PAR] project is a collaboration between the San Francisco Fire Department and SJSU HRI, where Phase I research has been awarded an NSF CIVIC-PG (“Civic Innovation Challenge”) grant that will run through March of 2023.

The goal of this research project is to strengthen community paramedicine’s work to improve the quality of life and resilience of residents of San Francisco, ultimately creating sustainable outcomes that are scalable across the U.S. The project team’s theoretical framework conceptualizes community paramedicine through an ecological system, where the wellbeing of program staff and their clients are integrally connected, and improving the actual conditions of both the staff and the clients will happen through aligning expectations and creating interventions to help both staff and clients achieve their goals.

Specifically, Phase I of this project will focus on three core questions:

  1. How do community paramedicine staff, clients, and municipal stakeholders define success for community paramedicine programs?
  2. What metrics measure whether community paramedicine programs are achieving success in an equitable manner and how can the data to inform these metrics be routinely collected?
  3. Given the answers to the two questions above, which interventions should be piloted in Stage 2 to improve the coordination, design, equitable delivery, and/or efficiency of community paramedicine services?

Stay tuned for more updates on the progress and findings of this exciting research!

Little Kabul Stories

Little Kabul Stories is a digital collection of interviews with area Afghan diaspora that were donated by a local community organization.  The HRI is now working with Scholarworks and the MLK Library to curate and make these narrative archives available to the research community and broader public.  It serves as part of a larger project to collect, organize, and make available narrative and document histories of our diverse immigrant communities in San José and Silicon Valley.

We hope to have Little Kabul Stories and the emergent Narrative Histories Archive up and available by spring 2023.

Afghan Narrative Histories Research and Archive

Sociology/AAS professor and HRWG member Saugher Nojan is working with local Afghan community organizations and our two visiting Afghan scholars to build upon “Little Kabul Stories” by collecting the narrative and document histories (largely through interviews and donated materials from participating community members) of Afghan immigrants and their families.  Dr. Nojan received a faculty research grant for summer 2022 to launch this project, and will be building the narrative histories archive through the 2022-23 AY.