Code For Africa Call for Fellowships: Research into Online Gender Based Harassment

Code For Africa Call for Fellowships: Research into Online Gender Based Harassment

Code for Africa (CfA) in partnership with Jigsaw, is offering research grants and technical support for evidence-driven analysis into how malign actors coordinate harassment and complaints against African women journalists and fact-checkers across 21 African countries. The countries covered in this programme are: Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, the Central African Republic (CAR), Chad, Côte d’Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe.

The research fellowships come with a financial stipend, along with access to CfA’s in-house research desk, as well as forensic analysts, data scientists and open source intelligence (OSINT) researchers, and machine learning tools for social listening or data/network analysis.

The research fellows will compile evidence about online gender-based harassment into substantive public research reports that shines new light on the actors, networks and motives behind the online harassment and how it undermines public participation of marginalised groups on the African continent.

Selected fellows will be invited to share their research at seminars or international events.

Why is CfA Offering Research Grants?

Detailed evidence and/or actionable insights about how online gender based harassment is coordinated is scarce in Africa. This hampers traditional civil society watchdogs and media from proactively exposing these activities and mobilising for fairer societies.

The fellows’ research is therefore intended to not only help African media and CSOs understand online gender-based harassment in their country/region, but to establish ways in which they can combat the harassment.

Research Formats:

Grant recipients will be required to publish their findings on free-to-access platforms. CfA is therefore most interested in research proposals that aim to produce any of the following:

  • Series of short reports modelled on journalistic analysis (see examples elsewhere on the ADDO website).

  • Datasets containing actionable information or lexicons or watchlists for researchers, media or CSOs to use for their own analysis.

  • Presentations designed to showcase research at conferences or to peer groups.

  • Academically-focussed preprint or peer reviewed papers for public feedback and citation.

  • Where will my research be published?

  • Fellows’ research output will be published with their home institutions, as well as on this site. CfA will also collaborate with research partners to identify and publish in relevant high-impact, mass-audience media or industry journals. Research can also be published as pre-print papers.

    Depending on the research output,
    and the report format, the fellows may present their findings at public events or on broadcast media (as guest speakers) rather than in print media. As a principle, CfA will strive for syndication or multiple publications, to maximise impact.

    Who can apply?
    Individuals or small teams that work in African countries, or that are affiliated with African-based partners can apply.

    All applications will be evaluated by an internal review committee.

    Evaluation Criteria

    This call-for-proposals is intended to be a fast-track and lightweight support mechanism for researchers. Proposals that focus on generating rapid and/or iterative outputs will be prioritised for this initial call (future calls will accommodate more complex or longer research projects). Proposals will be evaluated using the following criteria:

  • 25 points: The strength of the research topic and supporting evidence. Does it address issues on online gender based harassment; does it offer fresh insights/evidence that will aid civic watchdogs; is the evidence accessible and compelling?

  • 25 points: The capacity/expertise of the researcher/team. Does the researcher have demonstrable technical expertise or domain knowledge; is there clear commitment to global best-practices for research ethics/data management?

  • 20 points: The feasibility of the proposal. Is the research topic and methodology feasible within the proposed project timelines, budget, methodology and research capacity?

  • 15 points: The envisioned format for the research outputs. Will the proposed format/s be widely accessible for civic watchdogs such as the media and CSOs and other researchers; will the research package include data or other evidence for watchdogs to analyse; will the research format be appropriate for some form of peer review?

  • 15 points: Commitment to knowledge sharing. Does the researcher have a track-record for sharing technical insights on methodologies/technologies used in the analysis; is there a commitment to transforming the research and/or methodology into replicable resources; is there a commitment to open data, open knowledge standards?

    How to Apply

    For more information and job application details, see; Code For Africa Call for Fellowships: Research into Online Gender Based Harassment

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