Postdoctoral Research Fellowship Program 2022-2023

Call for Applications

The International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation (IICSI)’s mandate is to create positive social change through the confluence of improvisational arts, innovative scholarship, and collaborative action. IICSI is a multi-locale research partnership hosted at the University of Guelph, with sites at McGill University; Memorial University of Newfoundland (MUN); University of British Columbia; University of Regina; Carleton University; 17, Institute of Critical Studies (Mexico City); and Queen’s University Belfast. IICSI seeks to contribute to interdisciplinary research and graduate training in the emerging field of improvisation studies.

For the 2022-2023 academic year, we invite applications for two twelve-month residential postdoctoral fellowship positions to be held at the University of Guelph. The postdoctoral fellowship provides stipendiary support, valued at $40,500 CAD to recent PhD graduates who are undertaking original research, publishing research findings, and developing and expanding personal research networks. Candidates will normally be expected to spend at least 3 days per week on campus to facilitate cultural and intellectual engagement; however, we will also consider candidates who require flexible work arrangements.

Applications from scholars working in IICSI’s principal research areas are encouraged: music, cultural studies, creative technologies, political studies, sociology and anthropology, English studies, theatre and performance studies, French studies, law, philosophy, and communications. Applications from other research areas are also welcome, with preference given to research that has a direct link with the social, cultural, or political implications of improvised art practices. We welcome candidates with expertise in pedagogy and community engagement who will contribute to IICSI’s new graduate program in Critical Studies in Improvisation.

One of the postdocs will be held at GIER – The Guelph Institute for Environmental Research. For the GIER fellowship, applicants are encouraged to submit proposals focused on how improvisational skills and frameworks (e.g., in the experimental process, in simulation modelling, in collaboration across disciplines, and others) can lead to research discoveries at the interface of disciplines or in solving our environmental crises, including but not limited to climate change or biodiversity decline. Applicants must have experience in interdisciplinary environmental research across both the Natural Sciences and/or Engineering and the Social Sciences, Arts, and/or Humanities.

Application Criteria

Applicants are invited to submit a research proposal focusing on the social implications (broadly construed) of improvised artistic practices. Successful candidates will be chosen based on a rigorous application process, with IICSI’s management team and GIER serving as the selection committee. Criteria for selection are the quality and originality of the proposed research, the fit with the institutes’ overall mandate and objectives, the candidate’s record of scholarly achievement, and her/his ability to benefit from activities associated with IICSI and/or GIER.

Postdoctoral fellows will be eligible for competitive research stipends, logistical assistance for relocation (if required), office space equipped with computers, access to the services of the host institution (library, etc.), and administrative, placement, and research assistance as needed. In return, fellows are expected to pursue the research projects submitted in their application, to participate in the Institute’s research and community-engaged activities (colloquia, seminars, partnered projects), and to present their work in progress in the context of the Institute’s seminars and workshops. Applicants should have completed a PhD at the time of application (to be conferred by November 1, 2022)

Applicants should have completed a PhD at the time of application (to be conferred by November 1, 2022).

Applicants must submit ALL of the following via email by the deadline July 1, 2022:

  • Curriculum Vitae
  • 1 Scholarly paper or publication or 1 research/creation output produced in the last 3 years
  • A statement (1,500 words or less) describing the proposed research project
  • Two confidential letters of reference (sent directly to IICSI by referees via email before deadline)
  • Graduate transcript(s)
  • 250-word JEDI statement (justice, equity, diversity, inclusion)
  • indication of language proficiencies

Please note that we are unable to provide individual feedback to candidates not awarded fellowships.

Send applications via email to:

Dr. Ajay Heble, Director, IICSI
[email protected]

Notification for award: July 2022

See our FAQ page for questions about the application criteria and more