Awards and Fellowships
Emerging Projects Fund
The Critical Digital Humanities Initiative’s Emerging Project Fund offers funding for time-limited, faculty-led digital humanities project planning, partnership networking, and/or tool-building through competitive seed grants. Each award of $4,000 is designed to support faculty research in critical digital humanities. The Emerging Projects Fund particularly seeks to build research projects and teams that will be well positioned to apply for Tri-Council or other funding in the future.
While all DH scholars are encouraged to apply, we will prioritize research projects engaged in critical digital humanities: research that emphasizes questions of power, social justice, and critical theory in making and analyzing digital technologies. We also encourage applications for critical digital humanities projects that foreground creative praxis, co-creation, public engagement, and community-based research.
Eligibility: All full-time faculty members at the University of Toronto, including research stream, teaching stream, and CLTAs. In the case of multi-university teams or community partnerships, the lead applicant must be a University of Toronto faculty member.
Funds Awarded: Applications will be considered for budgets up to $4,000.
Deadline for Applications: 25 March 2022. For full application information, please follow this link.
JHI-UTSC Early Career Digital Humanities Fellowship
The Jackman Humanities Institute, with the support of UT-Scarborough, the UTSC Library, the Dean of UTSC and the Office of the Vice-Principal Research, supports a 18-month Digital Scholarship project in 2021-2022. The JHI-UTSC DH early career faculty fellow leads a team involving undergraduate and graduate students and library staff to produce the following outcomes:
- participation in the Critical Digital Humanities Initiative
- curricular innovation
- advancement on a scholarly project
- a grant proposal (SSHRC, Early Researcher Award, or other)
The call for this opportunity is circulated in the spring of each year. For the 2021-2022 call (applications closed on April 16, 2021), see this link.
Sherry S. Yu
Sherry S. Yu is Assistant Professor in the Department of Arts, Culture and Media, and the Faculty of Information at the University of Toronto. Her research explores multiculturalism, media, and social integration. She is the author of Diasporic Media beyond the Diaspora: Korean Media in Vancouver and Los Angeles (2018, UBC Press) and the co-editor of Ethnic Media in the Digital Age (2019, Routledge). She is currently working on an edited volume entitled, The Handbook of Ethnic Media in Canada, with Daniel Ahadi and Ahmed Al-Rawi at Simon Fraser University. Her research also has been published in scholarly journals such as Journalism: Theory, Practice & Criticism, Journalism Studies, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, Canadian Ethnic Studies, Canadian Journal of Communication, and Global Media Journal — Canadian Edition.
Project Title: Digital Ethnic Media Hub
Digital Ethnic Media Hub (DEMH) aims to serve as a publicly accessible digital space for 1) an ethnic media directory and 2) an ethnic news database. It responds to the absence of consolidated up-to-date open access to Canadian ethnic media for research, teaching, professional practice, and public knowledge. This lack of equity and inclusion of long-established ethnic journalism in the Canadian media system creates an ever-widening gap in the public discourse, especially in the digital age, and poses great challenges to serve the information needs of the members of multicultural society. This project aims to develop a prototype of DEMH and an application for additional funding which will help further assess user experiences and sustainability of DEMH as a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic, and multilingual information hub.
Mark V. Campbell
(Ph.D. 2010, Sociology and Equity Studies, OISE/University of Toronto) is Assistant Professor of Music and Culture in the Department of Arts, Culture and Media. He is a DJ and Curator with research interests that include Afrosonic cultures, hip hop archives and DJ cultures. As founder of Northside Hip Hop Archive, Dr. Campbell and his work have been covered by various media outlets such as Toronto Life, The Globe & Mail, The FADER, CBC’s Q, Red Bull Music, CityTV, Urbanology Magazine, Pacific Standard, hiphopcanada.com, The Puritan, Now Magazine, the Washington Post and others.
AfroSonic Audio is a research creation project by which Dr. Campbell works at the intersections of Black studies, musicology and the digital humanities to produce two audio tracks utilizing archival materials from Toronto’s sonic lineage. In this project, Mark asks two main questions: (1) “How can the archiving of hip hop’s sonic innovations contribute creative and conceptual methodologies focused on decolonizing the archive?” “Since digital technologies allow for a greater visibility and appreciation of black cultural repertoire, can the creative process of performing embodied Black cultural knowledges remix notions of preservation?”
To answer these questions, his project is divided into three research and creative components.
- Digitization: Thirty radio shows from the longest running hip hop radio show in Canada—the Masterplan Show (CIUT 89.5fm)—and thirty analogue mixtapes from Toronto and the GTA will be digitized and annotated.
- Annotation & Ideation: After listening to all the audio, the project team will assign metadata attributes to the annotated archival audio, including capturing aspects of localism, vernacular and DJ techniques that speak specifically to the Toronto context. These annotations will be used as part of a course assignment and experiential DJ lab in Mark’s UTSC course.
- Writing & Creation: Two new audio tracks will integrate audio samples chosen from the archival materials, with feedback and collaboration from DJs on the Masterplan Radio Show. Other outputs include an annotated bibliography and a journal article.
Alejandro I. Paz
(Ph.D. 2010, Anthropology and Linguistics, University of Chicago) is Associate Professor of Anthropology at the University of Toronto Scarborough. His research addresses the relation between language, public communication, media and citizenship, and regionally he researches Israel in the Middle East. Alejandro’s publications to date and work in progress are based on extensive ethnographic, archival and linguistic fieldwork in Israel/Palestine.
MediaCat: In his latest project, Alejandro considers the impact of Israeli English-language news websites on the digital dissemination of news about Israel and Palestine specifically, and about the Middle East more generally. He collaborates with others on an extensive digital component, in order to better track the digital dissemination of news online. The web-application they’ve been developing is called MediaCAT.
The last twenty years have seen decisive shifts in the production and consumption of news and information in the North Atlantic. This project explores new ways to visualize the intertextual knowledge that forms in this new media environment. In particular, he and his team will develop visualizations for a new digital tool, called MediaCAT, that creates a corpus to study the intertextual sourcing in contemporary journalism.
Alejandro’s project will link three existing research and pedagogical goals:
- Improve on how we conceptualize the digital dissemination of sources, and the visualizations of digital intertextuality, by developing and publicizing new kinds of visualizations as part of an existing Digital Humanities tool developed at the UTSC called MediaCAT.
- Enable analysis and publications based on a new corpus produced by MediaCAT on the impact of Israeli English journalism.
- Promote the use of MediaCAT and contribute to a working group dedicated to examining Digital Palestine/Israel.
The Critical Digital Humanities Initiative (CDHI) will support five postdoctoral fellowships between 2021-2024. The Jackman Humanities Institute will continue their support of the digital humanities at the University of Toronto for the next three years in the form of an annual JHI Digital Humanities Postdoctoral Fellowship, tied to their annual theme. The call for this opportunity is circulated in the fall of each year, and the Fellow for 2021-2022 has been selected. In addition to these three fellowships, the University of Toronto, Scarborough and the Faculty of Information are each supporting a two-year postdoctoral fellowship in Critical Digital Humanities, to be supervised by faculty appointed in those divisions. Each postdoctoral fellowship will be held from July 1, 2022 through June 30, 2024, and the call for applications will circulate in the Fall of 2021. All five postdocs will be integrated into the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) postdoc program, attend CLIR training workshops in the US and transfer newly learned techniques back to the CDHI.
Please watch this space!
Our current JHI Digital Humanities Postdoctoral Fellow is Dr. Elisa Tersigni.
Dr. Elisa Tersigni
Elisa Tersigni (Ph.D. University of Toronto, 2018) completed her doctorate in English and the collaborative program in Book History and Print Culture. After graduation, she held the position of Digital Research Fellow for the Mellon-funded research project, Before ‘Farm to Table’: Early Modern Foodways and Cultures at the Folger Shakespeare Library and a Digital Research Fellowship at the John Rylands Library at the University of Manchester. She has extensive experience working in both digital humanities projects and with special collections, having completed an M.Sc. in Material Cultures and History of the Book at the University of Edinburgh, and has received grants to pursue research at dozens of libraries across Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom. Her interests in digital humanities research extend across GIS mapping, textual analysis, transcription, and cataloguing of early manuscripts, and she is currently developing a new authorship attribution method that combines text analysis with GIS.
Graduate Student Fellowships
In collaboration with our divisional partners, we will be awarding 12 graduate fellowships ranging from semester-length RAships of $4000 to longer term $10,000 fellowships. These fellowships are designed to support graduate students working on faculty DH projects and/or, in some instances, to support PhD students in completing their dissertations. Our first calls for applications will be posted in the early summer of 2021 to support Fall 2021 research.
Carina Emilia Guzmán is a PhD candidate in the Faculty of Information and the Mark S. Bonham Centre for Sexual Diversity Studies collaborative program, studying with Prof. T.L. Cowan (UTSC; Faculty of Information) and Prof. Jasmine Rault (UTSC; Faculty of Information). Guzmán’s dissertation is developing a trans-feminist and queer (TFQ) framework, “stor(y)ing mi desmadre,” to explore the digital, media, and archival praxes of feminized queer communities in Latin America.
Mariam Karim is a PhD candidate in the Faculty of Information and the collaborative program at the Women and Gender Studies Institute, supervised by Prof. Jasmine Rault (UTSC; Faculty of Information). Her project examines Arab women’s movement’s (1936–2020) information activism, exploring feminist continuities and media transformations in movement websites and social media.
Andrew Kaufman is working towards his PhD in Human Geography under the supervision of Prof. Alan Walks (UTM). His project, “Vulture Capitalism: The Making of Sovereign Debt Markets,” will produce a digital guide tracing the path of capital that is lent to low-and-middle-income nations through global capital markets.
Tracey O’Brien is a PhD candidate in the Department of English and the collaborative Book History & Print Culture program studying with Prof. Lynne Magnusson (FAS). Her dissertation, “A Corpus Study of Language Variation in Early Modern Women’s Writing,” examines linguistic structures women writers used between the mid-16th and late-17th centuries.
Tia Sager is a PhD candidate in the Department of Art History. Her dissertation, entitled “The Poetics and Politics of Space: A Religion Analysis of the Cretan Postpalatial Built Environment” and supervised by Prof. Carl Knappett (FAS), explores the built environments of Late Bronze Age Crete by means of 3D modelling.
Taylor Thorton is a doctoral candidate working with Prof. Max Friesen in the Department of Anthropology (FAS). In collaboration with the Pitquhirnikkut Ilihautiniq/Kitikmeot Heritage Society (PI/KHS) and Carleton University’s Geomatics and Cartographic Research Centre, she is developing the “Inuinnait Archaeology Atlas,” a digital platform that will record the Inuinnait cultural landscape, braiding together traditional Inuinnait knowledge and archaeological data.
Ian Turner is working towards his PhD in the Department for the Study of Religion with Prof. Christoph Emmrich (UTM). His doctoral research looks at how the Newar community in Nepal’s Kathmandu Valley has drawn on Indigenous traditions of Buddhism and Hinduism through recent decades. By converting self-published printed paperbacks and chapbooks into text-searchable digital files, he maps the literal terms that the authors use to critically reflect on cultural forms like religion and the home.
Yuxing (Yolanda) Zhang is a PhD candidate working with Prof. Tero Karppi (UTM) at the Faculty of Information. Her research combines multispecies ethnography and media and infrastructural studies to examine the politics of water-based, algorithmic agroecological technologies in Suzhou, China.
Undergraduate Student Fellowships
In collaboration with our divisional partners, we will be awarding undergraduate fellowships each year valued at $5000 each. These fellowships are designed to support undergraduate students working on faculty DH projects.
Current calls for funding: none at this time
Summer 2022 Undergraduate Fellows
Aidan Mitchell-Boudreau is a third-year undergraduate student double majoring in Ethics, Society, and Law and Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations with a minor in Music History and Culture. She is most passionate about the areas of digital ethics that relate to privacy, data security, indigenous data governance, and computational creativity. After working as an RA for GRASAC under the supervision of Prof. Bohaker and Prof. Krmpotich this past year, her current project will focus on working with the GRASAC team to assess their ethical guidelines in accordance with OCAP and UNDRIP. Supervisor: Heidi Bohaker
Awa Diagne is a third year student majoring in sociocultural anthropology and double minoring in equity studies and women & gender studies. Having interests in science and technology studies, Black studies and digital humanities, she is currently working on Dr. Edward Jones-Imhotep’s Black Androids project, an initiative that investigates and archives the “black androids,” a series of racialized automata created between the 18th and 20th centuries. Supervisor: Edward Jones Imhotep
Pallavi Maharaj is completing a major in Psychology and minors in Business and Political Science. In addition to these subjects, she has profound interest in Hindu philosophy and literature. This led her to study Sanskrit in her first year, and subsequently seek out research opportunities in the field. The research project she is currently working on will help develop digital technology that processes the content of Sanskrit manuscripts. Supervisor: Ajay Rao
Hajir Sharifi is a third-year undergraduate student majoring in Information at the Faculty of Information, iSchool. He is specializing in designing and maintaining highly available and horizontal scalable IT infrastructure. Coming from a background in human rights, equity studies, and philosophy, he is interested in researching social justice-related issues in the fields of HCI, UX and product design. Supervisor: Thy Phu
Shengsong Xu is a junior year undergraduate student at University of Toronto Scarborough, he is a computer science co-op specialist in software engineering. He is currently working as a software developer at UTSC Library Digital Scholarship Unit. The work is to develop a web crawler and visualization tools to help Dr Alejandro Paz on his research. He is enthusiastic about computer science and planning to pursue a graduate degree in computer science after graduation. Supervisor: Alejandro Paz
Winter 2022 Undergraduate Fellows
Bisma Ali is a fourth-year Health Studies student at UTSC. Her academic and research interests are in health inequities, where she has explored topics such as: mental health, women’s health, aging populations, and accessibility. The current project Bisma is working on as an Undergraduate Fellow will be exploring the use of digital humanities tools in contemporary disability studies.
Juan Antonio Bobadilla is a third-year international student, with a Double Major in Political Science and Economics, and a Minor in History. I am passionate about Latin American politics and history. In my free time, I enjoy filmmaking and supporting my hometown football team, Pachuca.
John Liao is an undergraduate double-majoring in Classics and Classical Civilization. Interested in theories of paratext and its application in ancient literature, he is currently working with Prof. Kenneth Yu on a project uncovering the logic and functions of Greek titles.
Darla Reslan majors in Cognitive Science & Anthropology at the Faculty of Arts & Science, U of T . Coming from a background in studies of the mind — neuroscience, psychology, philosophy, and computer science — I am interested in the generation and evolution of intelligent systems, both natural and artificial. I am focused on the integration of cognitive science with the teachings and methods of sociocultural anthropology, hoping to provide meaningful & actionable insights into the nature of mind and the research and development of artificial intelligence.
Sebastian Rodriguez is a second-year undergraduate student studying Communication, Culture, Information & Technology at UTM. His educational pursuits include ethical computing, surveillance, UI/UX design, front-end development, and data science.
The Digital Humanities Learning Community Grant is a grant of up to $2000 offered in support of groups of four or more individuals co-working towards specific digital humanities research during the Winter and Spring 2022 semesters.
We are thrilled to welcome six new learning communities for 2022:
Critical Data Practice & Historical Ontology Research Circle
This research circle fosters collaborations and cross-pollinations to facilitate synergies, conversation, and sharing among various digital projects at the university broadly engaged in developing historical ontologies. Through meetings and guest speaker presentations, the group will promote the sharing of expertise toward a sustainable, reflexive, and critical data practice.
PI: Adrien Zakar (Assistant Professor, NMC & IHPST) and Natalie Rothman (Associate Professor and Chair, Department of Historical and Historical Studies, UTSC)
Research Team: Lucia Dacome (Associate Professor, IHPST), Edward Jones-Imhotep (Associate Professor and Chair, IHPST), Esmat Elhalaby (Assistant Professor, Department of Historical and Historical Studies, UTSC), Elise Burton (Assistant Professor IHPST), Majd al-Shihabi (Graduate Student, Department of Geography), Kirsta Stapelfeldt (Head of Digital Scholarship Unit, UTSC)
Digital Threads: Anti-colonial Storytelling and Community Building Through Twine
This working group is focused on understanding the possibilities of Twine – and digital storywork more broadly – as a pedagogical tool for anti-oppressive, anti-colonial, anti-caste, and community-centred digital humanities work. The group, with members in Canada, the US, and India, plans to provide community organizers and educators with an accessible toolkit for ethically teaching and using Twine towards social justice and anti-colonial interventions.
PI: Arun Jacob (PhD Student, Faculty of Information)
Research Team: Anna Maria Kalinowski (PhD Student, Faculty of Information), Natalia Toronchuk (PhD Student, Faculty of Information), Zeinab Farokhi (PhD Candidate, Women and Gender Studies Institute), Kush Patel (Head of Studies, Postgraduate Arts Program in Technology and Change, Srishti Manipal Institute of Art, Design, and Technology, Manipal Academy of Higher Education, India), Ashley Caranto Morford (Assistant Professor, Department of Liberal Arts, Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts)
Digital Humanities in the Music City: Emerging Methodologies in Toronto’s Art Scene
This working group is composed of faculty, librarians and staff interested in knowledge mobilization and outreach using digital humanities methods to engage with communities and artists in the City of Toronto. The group will convene a workshop series with artist-researchers that examines the role of urban data that is generated by communities and articulated through artistic expression. Discussions will focus on the role of data equity and social justice throughout the research process, and what changes can be made to methods of data collection, analysis, interpretation, distribution, ownership, and access.
PI: Ely Lyonblum, PhD (Strategic Research Development Officer, Faculty of Music)
Research Team: Mark Campbell (Assistant Professor, Music and Culture, Department of Arts, Culture and Media, UTSC), Janneka L. Guise (Head Librarian, Faculty of Music), Farzaneh Hemmasi (Associate Professor of Music, Ethnomusicology, Faculty of Music), Nasim Niknafs (Associate Professor of Music Education, Faculty of Music), Laura Risk (Assistant Professor, Music and Culture, Department of Arts, Culture and Media, UTSC)
Surveillance, Race, and Empire
The Surveillance, Race, and Empire Learning Community interrogates sites of surveillance including biometrics and geographic information systems for the racializing and imperial ideologies/practices embedded in their technologies. The learning community is interested in not only the end-products of surveillance-related scholarship, but also the methodologies, ethical considerations, and research protections undertaken in the process. To address these issues and the questions they raise, the group will host a series of four public-facing lectures with corresponding workshops and discussion sessions.
PI: Jennifer Ross (Postdoctoral Fellow, Failure: Learning in Progress Project, UTM)
Research Team: Arun Jacob (PhD student, Faculty of Information), Sebastian Rodriguez (Undergraduate student, CCIT, UTM), Christina Boyles (Assistant Professor of Culturally Engaged Digital Humanities, Michigan State University) Andy Boyles Peterson (Digital Scholarship Librarian, Michigan State University)
Developing a Critical Framework for Crisis Response in and with DH
This working group builds and fosters relationships with a community of digital humanities scholars and practitioners in and outside the UofT. The group engages with emerging literature and conversations with digital humanities scholars and practitioners, paying particular attention to QTBIPOC scholarship. The group plans to conceptualize and make public an accessible, cross-disciplinary “toolkit” for ethical, digitally mediated crisis responses.
PI: Haley Bryant (PhD Student, Faculty of Information)
Research Team: Camille Intson (PhD Student, Faculty of Information), Nelanthi Hewa (PhD Student, Faculty of Information), Arun Jacob (PhD Student, Faculty of Information), Rebecca Noone (Postdoctoral Fellow, Faculty of Information), Julia Polyck-O’Neill (Postdoctoral Fellow, Robarts Centre for Canadian Studies, York University)
Tri-Campus Council for Indigenous Research
The Tri-Campus Council for Indigenous Research aims to build and sustain community-based research and practice that is informed by ethical relationships with Indigenous partners and foregrounds Indigenous Knowledge, Indigenous Methodologies, Indigenous feminist practices and anti-colonial practices in their work in the academy. The group shares space for new projects, collaborators and professional support for newly hired Indigenous academics and academics who work with Indigenous communities.
PI: Jennifer Wemigwans (Assistant Professor in Adult Education and Community Development Program, OISE/UT)
Research Team: Mikinaak Migwans (Assistant Professor, Department of Art History and Curator Art Museum, St. George), Uahikea Maile (Assistant Professor, Political Science, St. George), Maria Hupfield (Assistant Professor, Indigenous Digital Arts and Performance, Canadian Research Chair Transdisciplinary Indigenous Arts, UTM) Kristen Bos (Assistant Professor of Indigenous Science and Technology Studies and the Co-Director of the Indigenous-led Technoscience Research Unit, UTM), Robin Gray (Assistant Professor of Sociology, UTM), Natalie Latulippe (Assistant Professor, Human Geography and Physical and Environmental Sciences, UTSC), Jennifer Brant (Assistant Professor, Curriculum Teaching and Learning, OISE),