Aspiration Postdoctoral Fellowships

Call for applications for an Aspiration Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Victoria

Starting date: 1 January 2024
Duration: 2 years

STAGE 1, deadline May 22, 2023
STAGE 2, deadline June 5, 2023
Results will be announced in July 2023

Click here to download a PDF of the application details

The Project: Knowledge for Change (K4C) Global Consortium on Community-Based Research

The postdoctoral appointment is linked to the UNESCO Chair in Community-Based Research and Social Responsibility in Higher Education. The UNESCO Chair is co-directed by Dr. Budd L Hall, Centre for Global Studies, University of Victoria and Dr. Rajesh Tandon, PRIA, New Delhi, India. The postdoctoral fellowship will be based at the Centre for Global Studies and a Faculty which reflects the post-doc disciplinary background.  The postdoc will be a key partner working with Dr. Hall on advancing their work in knowledge democracy. The focus of the postdoctoral fellowship is on expanding the scope of the K4C Consortium to additional locations in the Global South.

The K4C Global Consortium

Based on five years of state-of-the-art research on international developments in community-based participatory research funded by the International Development Research Centre, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Canada and others, Drs. Tandon and Hall have responded to the question of how to create economical and sustainable structures in the global South and the ‘excluded’ North for building research capacity in community-based participatory research? The K4C strategy that has emerged supports the creation of K4C hubs as formal partnerships between universities and community or practitioner organizations which emphasize training by doing CBR linked to the UN Sustainable Development Goals with an emphasis on climate justice. The K4C model builds capacities through a carefully crafted 21-week Mentor Training Program (MTP). Academics from higher education institutions and practitioners from civil society organisations are trained as Mentors, who go on to become champions and carry the socially responsible research agenda forward at the level of the university. On completing the MTP, the mentors are expected to design and launch a locally contextualized course in CBPR. Since 2017, this low-cost, high impact model has trained 145 mentors (in 8 cohorts), who have gone on to create 24 K4C Hubs in Burkina Faso, Cuba, Colombia, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Malaysia, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, and Canada.

Global Policy Eco-system

In the past five years, a new convergence of discourses and policy recommendations have emerged where the core perspectives, methodologies and practices of K4C have been affirmed:

  • Adaptation Research Alliance launched in COP26…undertake solution-focused climate adaptation research in partnership with local communities impacted by climate distress

  • Open Science Recommendations from UNESCO adopted by its membership in Nov 2021 that describes need to respect and engage with multiple knowledge systems, promote sustained public engagement with participatory research and citizens science.

  • Reimagining Our Futures Together…UNESCO International Commission on Futures of Education (2021) …calling for trans-disciplinarity in research through open engagement and partnership with societal actors

  • UNESCO Expert Group on Higher Education & SDGs (2022) …presented at Third World Higher Education Conference in Barcelona May 2022….recommends greater societal engagement and working with multiple epistemologies

  • 30th Anniversary Conference UNITWIN/UNESCO Chairs program of UNESCO November 3-4, 2022…decolonization of knowledge and epistemic justice key messages…..building trusting partnerships with communities

The research interests of the postdoctoral fellow are expected to fit into this broader context. The fellow will be required to have experience in community-based research in the Global South, to be familiar with global theories of justice in order to fit into the larger normative orientation of the project. Given the interdisciplinary character of the project, competences in higher education, knowledge equity, public policy, proposal writing and communications will be considered an asset. Ability to work in languages other than English also an asset.

The institutional context:

The postdoctoral fellow will have a double affiliation with the Centre for Global Studies and the academic unit where the fellow’s disciplinary background best fits. The Centre has a mandate to promote collaborative, multidisciplinary, and cross-regional research and engage in connecting research in the field of global studies to local, national, and international communities. The fellowship falls under one of the five impact areas, namely social justice and equity, targeted by the Aspiration 2030 Research Agenda of the University of Victoria. The postdoctoral fellow will be supervised by Budd Hall in the context of the UNESCO Chair in Community-Based Research and Social Responsibility in Higher Education. 

Selection procedure:

The selection procedure will take place in two stages:

For STAGE 1, deadline May 22, 2023:

Please send the following documents to with ASPIRATION 2030 as the subject, address to Budd Hall:

  • Your CV

  • An article published or written in the last three years

  • A summary of a proposed research project (1000 words max.)

  • A transcript of your graduate studies

  • 2 letters of reference (to be sent directly to

  • An indication of any available complementary external funding

For STAGE 2, deadline June 5, 2023:

Only one candidate will be retained for Stage 2 and selection at the university level. Please refer to the information about Funding Stream 1 available here.

*Results will be announced in July 2023

General rules:

  • Post-doctoral candidates must have fulfilled all degree requirements for a PhD or PhD-equivalent degree prior to commencing their postdoctoral appointment, but no longer than 2.5 years prior to the start of the award. To support equity, extensions to these time parameters will be considered in cases where applicants have experienced other career interruptions as defined by the tri-agencies.

  • Postdoctoral fellows who currently hold or have previously held a postdoctoral appointment at UVic are not eligible.

The position offers:

  • A salary of $55,000 per year, which is higher than a typical Tri-Council post-doctoral fellowship (e.g. SSHRC, NSERC, CIHR).

  • Full benefits (medical year 1 and medical/dental year 2).

  • An individual work station / shared office space at the Centre for Global Studies.

  • Access to the university services of UVic (libraries, etc.).

  • Assistance for the organisation of the stay.

The fellow will have the opportunity to:

  • Work closely with Dr. Hall on UNESCO Chair research and development

  • Pursue the research project they submitted.

  • Participate in the academic activities of the Centre for Global Studies and the supervisory Department (conferences, seminars, etc.).

  • Be present at the Centre for Global Studies on a regular basis

  • To apply to teach one course during the second year of the fellowship (paid at sessional rate in addition to salary).

The fellow will be expected to:

  • Apply for one source of funding external funding a year (unless successful in the first year).

Selection criteria:

  • The quality of the research proposal and the candidate’s past record.

  • The fit with the UNESCO Chair institutional context.

  • Preference will be given to postdoctoral candidates who advance Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) in their respective discipline(s).