Call for Researcher: Understanding the Impacts of Anti-Blackness Online - Nia Centre for the Arts
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Call for Researcher: Understanding the Impacts of Anti-Blackness Online

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January 5 - February 7, 2021

Application DeadlineFebruary 7, 2021
Start DateMarch 2021
Contract Amount$8,000 – $10,000 (commensurate on experience)


Nia Centre is embarking on a 2-year project to better understand the impacts of anti-Blackness and hate directed towards Black individuals in online spaces, with the first phase of the project being a robust research initiative around these effects, and their impacts on our community. To do this, we are looking for a researcher to help us better understand these impacts through academic- and community-based research. This research will be used to collaboratively develop a toolkit relaying our findings to our community, as well as a series of recommendations and resources to support Black community members in more safely navigating online spaces, and better understanding digital and media literacy which centres the Black experience.

The research and subsequent toolkit is to be completed by June 2021.


We are looking for an experienced researcher who will:

  • Conduct a literature review to aggregate and summarize existing published research on the impacts and effects of online anti-Blackness on Black individuals (across generations)
  • Develop a mixed-methods framework for conducting community-based research to gain insight on the experiences of Black community members on the impacts and effects of anti-Blackness and hate online, including surveys, focus groups, interviews, and more. The selected researcher will be provided with a $2,000 research budget to support their work
  • Mobilize the research findings to develop a series of recommendations and resources for community members to support users in feeling more empowered, safe, and knowledgeable when navigating online spaces, as well as support users in better understanding media and digital literacy as it intersects with the Black experience in digital spaces
  • Lead the development of a toolkit which distills and adapts the research findings and recommendations in a manner that is approachable and accessible to community 


We are seeking proposals from researchers and/or research teams who:

  • Are representative of the African Diaspora 
  • Have a demonstrated commitment to community-based research models, including research that prioritizes and support Afro-diasporic communities 
  • Have or are currently pursuing a Masters and/or Ph.D in relevant fields
  • Are able to demonstrate previous experience in undertaking similar research initiatives
  • Have a strong understanding of digital and media literacy, and the Black-Canadian experience


Interested researchers are asked to submit the following items in one single PDF file via email, with the subject line: “Applicant(s) Name BLACKOUT Research Proposal” to by February 7, 2021, 11:59pm:

  • A cover letter, which should include why you’re interested in this project, and how/where you heard about this opportunity
  • A CV detailing your academic and community-based experience
  • A 2-page proposal that answers the following questions, as well as includes any other relevant information, resources, or tools that you anticipate using:
  1. How do you intend to undertake this research? Please include your approach to leveraging both academic and community resources and approach(es), and detail your access to these resources.
  2. How do you intend to mobilize research findings (including the toolkit and recommendations), particularly within the Black-Canadian community?
  3. How do you intend to engage the Black-Canadian community during the research process? Please speak to how your methodological approach(es) will support effective community-based and community-inclusive research

Questions can be directed to Nia Centre for the Arts via email, at


Nia Centre for the Arts is a Toronto-based charitable organization that supports, showcases and promotes an appreciation of arts from across the Afro-Diaspora. We present professional development programs for artists, engagement and mentorship programs and opportunities for youth, and present special events and exhibitions to our community, and Canadians as a whole. 

In October 2020, we began renovations on our 14,000 sq. ft. facility in Toronto, Ontario to build Canada’s first multidisciplinary Black arts centre. This new space will help bring our entire community together to experience art rooted in Afro-Diasporic traditions. Once renovated, our facility at 524 Oakwood Avenue will feature a 150-seat multi-purpose performance space, an event space, a digital media studio, an artist studio, youth space, gallery space, and more. 

This project is made possible through the support of the Department of Canadian Heritage

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