CommsLabs Research Review & Standardization

Astraea seeks a consultant who will conduct a comprehensive review of CommsLabs research to date and, from such review, develop recommendations for streamlined processes and best practices for future research.

Background

The Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice (Astraea) works for social, racial, and economic justice globally. Our grantmaking and philanthropic advocacy programs support and enable LGBTQI organizations to challenge oppression and claim their human rights. In pursuing our mission, Astraea engages in grantmaking by raising and distributing funds to social change programs, capacity building and leadership development through strategic programmatic support, philanthropic advocacy by expanding the community of donors that support LGBTQI issues, and media and communications to increase the visibility and break isolation of our constituencies. 

Astraea’s CommsLabs is a radical global movement-building initiative that equips LGBTQI activists with the tools, skills and knowledge they need to securely organize and advocate in online spaces. Through a series of regional or country-based convenings, each Lab connects local LGBTQI activists, trainers, healers and technologists in an effort to address the online and offline threats facing LGBTQI communities, and seize the opportunities technology presents. CommsLabs is designed to equip activists with the holistic tools needed to increase their impact at a grassroots level, supported by a network of allied technologists and trainers. Through the Labs, LGBTQI activists develop the skills and strategies to effectively and safely exchange information and advocate for fundamental human rights. At the same time, CommsLabs is building a network of linked activists and technologists from the Global South and East working independently and together to foster the next generation of LGBTQI human rights advocacy. 

CommsLabs provide a participatory space for LGBTQI activists to share and learn secure, sustainable and holistic media and communications strategies; strengthen digital security; and amplify their impact through the use of technology in repressive contexts. To date, Astraea has held three CommsLabs convenings: in Colombia, Kenya, and South Africa. 

 

Project Outline

Prior to each CommsLabs convening, Astraea collaborates with consultants and local activist partners to conduct research on country-specific LGBTQI movement context, needs, and strategies. The research is key to informing the programming, agenda, and training modules for each CommsLabs convening. The focus of each research project is informed by movement activists and priorities unique to each context, and the completed projects to date have varied greatly in scope, guiding research questions, and research methodology. Astraea seeks a consultant who will conduct a comprehensive review of CommsLabs research to date and, from such review, develop recommendations for streamlined processes and best practices for future research. In doing so, we hope to make these projects increasingly meaningful to our activist partners and colleagues and open cross-context dialogue from our research findings. 

 

Responsibilities

  • Provide a comprehensive review of all CommsLabs research to date, including a review of research questions and methodologies used across CommsLabs technical assessment reports
  • Interview key stakeholders (Astraea staff, writers, researchers, activist partners) from past research to evaluate strengths and challenges of the research process 
  • Develop standard research questionnaires and sample country-specific questions that can be adapted for future CommsLabs in different contexts
  • Develop clear guidelines to assist consultant researchers for future CommsLabs, including guidance around research methods, data analysis, participatory research practices, and report writing
  • Develop recommendations for research timelines and best practices

 

Deliverables and Timeline

Evaluation of Research Quality & Research Process | Oct. 9, 2020 

  • Assess the quality of past research and methodologies applied 
  • Identify critical gaps and limitations
  • Assess whether research provides a nuanced approach for each geographic context
  • Evaluate key differences across existing research 
  • Evaluate research development and design processes

Development of Methodology and Templates for Future Research | Oct. 30, 2020

  • Standardize research methodology (overall research question, data gathering, data analysis and interpretation) 
  • Develop sample research questions and define realistic scope of investigation
  • Recommend core competencies for hiring consultant researchers
  • Draft guiding documents for consultant researchers to better understand research goals and report writing that is consistent with Astraea’s voice
  • Recommend qualitative and quantitative data analysis procedures for future CommsLabs research

Incorporate Feedback from Astraea and Finalize Recommendations and Templates | Nov. 13, 2020

 

Core Competencies 

  • Experience leading activist-driven research projects;
  • Knowledge of queer, feminist, participatory research methods and practices;
  • Experience developing learning and evaluation materials;
  • Experience collecting and synthesizing data;
  • Proficiency in English;
  • Strong communication and writing skills;
  • Highly efficient and flexible approach to work, with ease in collaborating with others;
  • Strong intersectional politics and demonstrated commitment to gender, racial, economic and global justice.

Astraea is an equal opportunity employer committed to a diverse, multicultural work environment. People of color, people with disabilities and people of diverse sexual orientations, gender expressions and identities are encouraged to apply.

 

To Apply

Interested candidates should submit a brief letter of interest, a CV/resume and proposed consulting fees to skreitzberg@astraeafounation.org by September 20th, 2020. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until the role is filled.

Apply for the job

Astraea is an equal opportunity employer. Our policy is to select, place, train and promote the best qualified individuals based upon relevant factors such as work quality, attitude and experience so as to provide equal opportunity for all of our employees in compliance with applicable local, state and federal law, and without regard to non-work related factors such as sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status, disability, economic status, personal appearance including height and weight, family responsibility, matriculation, political affiliation or any other status protected by applicable law. This policy applies to all activities, including but not limited to, recruiting, hiring, training, transfers, promotions and benefits. This policy governs all aspects of employment, including selection, job assignment, compensation, discipline, termination and access to benefits and training