Accessibility statement

Working to decolonise research practices mentoring programme

Posted on 27 July 2021

Applications are invited for a programme designed to stimulate and support a cohort of researchers to undertake pilot research projects that explore and champion the decolonisation of research.

‘Decolonisation’ involves confronting and challenging colonial histories and legacies, and disrupting structural inequalities arising from the colonial past.

The decolonial agenda is also broader in that it should recognise that we live in a world that has been shaped by the colonial past.

This leads to a consideration of wider structural inequalities and injustices, particularly at the intersection of race and class within the UK and across the globe.

Decolonisation thus raises questions of who sets research agendas, what methods are used; who owns the research; and processes of how we collaborate.

The decolonisation agenda has grown in prominence over recent years; yet, as an institution, and a sector, we are only just starting to address this. Important work to date has focused on the curriculum, but in a research-intensive institution where teaching is research-led, we need also to support and invest in attempts to decolonise research and research practices.

During Autumn term 2021, the Research Champions will be running a series of events to interrogate what decolonised research looks like at York. Alongside lectures and discussions, we invite applications to be part of a cohort of pilot projects offered support and mentoring over the coming academic year.

The cohort will be supported through an initial workshop and structured mentoring programme, with access to up to £1000 per project to develop pilot research and support preparation for funding applications. Their research will be showcased in a series of short online videos.

The initial workshop will be held in late October 2021, organised around the availability of the successful applicants.

You will be asked to provide a 500-word proposal for your project, thinking about activities that could help decolonise your research practices and provide a foundation for a larger funded project.

These might include (but are not limited to) developing new partners and collaborations, consulting with a particular community, developing outreach and dissemination activities, or structuring new collaborative relationships in writing a research grant.

Up to £1,000 per project will be available to support these activities; please indicate in outline how you would use these funds.

In evaluating and discussing these proposals, we will look into the quality of collaborations and partnerships, as well as the question of who sets agendas, and who evaluates success and impact.

Please do not worry if your ideas are still being worked out. At the workshop we will have space to discuss our project plans and ongoing mentoring will support their implementation.

The programme is open to researchers in any Department of the University. To be eligible you need to be an employee on a contract that involves a research component. This includes postdoctoral research fellows, but unfortunately not postgraduate students. We particularly welcome applications from under-represented groups.

If you have any questions, contact or, Research Champions for Culture and Communication.

The closing date for applications is 1 October 2021 (Friday, Week 1) and successful candidates will be informed by 8 October.

Apply for the mentoring programme