The CSST Program fosters interdisciplinary theoretical and empirical research in the critical traditions of social inquiry.

Such inquiry seeks to identify and understand the gaps, contradictions, and limits in the social, material, ideational, and political relations, discourses, logics, and structures that produce social worlds. Critical scholarship considers the implication of these for collectives and individual lives regarding violence, injustices, and various forms of economic exploitation; and for the possibility of fashioning alternative forms of social life.   Informing this view of critical inquiry is a strong belief that: the world in which we live and work – its social-material practices and relations, including those involving production and reproduction – and the discourses about the world, both matter. A basic idea underlying the critical disposition of the CSST Program is the idea that we can think and live differently, and often radically, than how we do now.

The vibrancy of  the CSST Program is driven by the activities of researchers (faculty, post-doctoral fellows and graduate students) involved in it and the range of inquiry in areas such as: critical border studies; critical studies on gender, racism, and security; critical globalization and trans-nationalism studies; critical development studies; digital media politics; and Marxist political economy and social theory.  Knowledge produced through the CSST Program provides a nuanced appraisal of what it means in the early Twenty-First Century to treat human society in a comprehensive fashion, with its economic, political, ecological and cultural aspects inter-connected, and linked across geographical scales (e.g. sub-national, national and international).