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: 14 May 2021. 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.


Current Fellow

Headshot of Mark Campbell

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.

Past Fellows

Headshot of Mark Campbell

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,, 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.
Headshot of Mark Campbell

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:

  1. 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.
  2. Enable analysis and publications based on a new corpus produced by MediaCAT on the impact of Israeli English journalism.
  3. Promote the use of MediaCAT and contribute to a working group dedicated to examining Digital Palestine/Israel.

Postdoctoral Fellowships

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!

Current calls for funding: none at this time.

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.

Current calls for funding: none at this time.

Our inaugural Graduate Fellows (2021-2022):

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 8 undergraduate fellowships each year valued at $5000 each. These fellowships are designed to support undergraduate students working on faculty DH projects.

Please watch this space!


Current calls for funding: 

Undergraduate Fellowships in Critical Digital Humanities

The Critical Digital Humanities Initiative (CDHI) is pleased to announce new Fellowships in Critical Digital Humanities (DH) research to support qualified undergraduate students registered in any program at the University of Toronto. The program embeds undergraduate student researchers within existing critical digital humanities research projects at U of T. This call supports undergrad researchers for the period between Jan. 3, 2022 and April 30, 2022.  

U of T faculty members are invited to apply to the program, which will fund an undergraduate fellow’s position within their critical digital humanities research project/team for Winter and Spring, 2022. Successful faculty applicants and their research teams will be responsible for recruiting their undergraduate fellow. We are particularly interested in proposals that succeed in creating cross-divisional teams that train undergraduate students in disciplines, fields, skills, and/or methodologies that might be new to them.  

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.