By Jena Lynde-Smith

Nana aba Duncan, Carleton University’s Carty Chair in Journalism, Diversity and Inclusion Studies, has been awarded a grant designed to help self-identified BIPOC faculty members apply for research funding.

Duncan was selected for a Racialized and Indigenous Faculty Alliance Research (RIFA) Grant alongside three other Carleton professors. Her proposal outlined her plans to apply for a tri-council award which would fund her research on Black Canadians and journalism.

“A grant for this research is so important at this moment because it affirms the need for more knowledge and resources in journalism to address systemic racism and anti-Black racism,” Duncan said.

“My vision is that this work will help ensure that Black communities and Black perspectives are better reflected in news content and in Canada’s newsrooms, and will support the current shift in Canadian journalism to a more equitable, diverse, and inclusive industry.”

Duncan joined Carleton’s School of Journalism and Communication at the beginning of this academic year as a full-time faculty member and the first to occupy the Carty Chair in Journalism, Diversity and Inclusion Studies. The teaching and research chair is the first of its kind in a journalism school in Canada.

Duncan’s project involves five sub-projects covering the relationship between Black people in Canada and journalism in the past, present and future. She intends for this research to be the first phase in establishing a research centre to advocate, support and participate in inclusive and belonging-focused journalism in Canada through research, education, community-building and media production.

“The Centre is an idea I’ve had for a while, and I’m encouraged by the support that major organizations and key stakeholders in the country have shown towards this endeavor so far,” she said.

Duncan has partnered with fellow Carleton journalism professor, Adrian Harewood, and Toronto-based journalist, Eternity Martis, on her research.

“I never do things alone, so it was important to embark on a research project with the talent and skills of others, particularly my partners,” she said.

The RIFA grant is funded by the Office of the Vice-President and administered the university’s Racialized and Indigenous Faculty Alliance. The grant is an internal funding program that supports self-identified BIPOC emerging scholars/early career faculty members and instructors in their applications to external granting agencies including Tri-Council, governmental, business and NGOs, as well as international sources.

“I am honoured and delighted to win a grant so early on in my career as a new professor,” Duncan said. “I know one of RIFA’s goals is to promote professional development by providing research support and mentorship for early career members, and I will definitely take them up on that.”

The steering committee for the RIFA grant was impressed by Duncan’s application. They said that she and the other three winners put together “cohesive, innovative, and critical research proposals.”

“As a steering committee, we were both impressed and proud of our colleagues.”

Learn more about the RIFA grant here: 

Tuesday, November 23, 2021 in ,
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