We're Hiring! Student researcher


Job Title: Student Researcher- Digital Capacity of Social Sector Organizations

Salary: $15.00 an hour

Hours: 37.5 a week

Duration: 6 weeks

Reporting to: Executive Director, Open North

Primary Responsibilities:

-The student will play a critical research role in furthering OpenNorth research interests and initiatives that assesses the digital capacity of social sector organizations in Canada.

-The student will focus on the borough of Cote-Des-Neiges, within the constituency of Outremont, as a case study to prototype the research methodology on the uses, access, attitudes and perceptions towards digital capacity, as well as explore innovative approaches to building digital capacities.

-With the support of the OpenNorth team, the student will develop research methodology, coordinate meetings with social sector organizations in Cote-Des-Neiges, conduct interviews, prepare cases studies and coordinate the preparation of reports of findings and recommendations.


-Senior undergraduate or graduate student

-Previous work experience is strongly preferred

Other Qualifying Skills and/or Abilities:

-Experienced with organizing, managing and analyzing quantitative data

-Research responsibilities may increase with higher level of expertise;

-Accuracy and attention to detail;

-Sense of motivation and ability to work independently;

-Willingness and ability to work flexible hours;

-Experienced writer;

-Bilingualism: English and French (fluent).

How to Apply:

Please submit your application via email to info@opennorth.ca.

Open North is committed to equity in employment and diversity. We encourage applications from indigenous peoples, visible minorities, ethnic minorities, persons with disabilities, women, persons of minority sexual orientations and gender identities.

More about the project:

The social sector in Canada does not have the same data and digital capacity as the business sector. This has a direct impact on its ability to address complex social problems, such as poverty, homelessness, newcomer settlement, health and educational inequalities. Numerous government agencies and nonprofits are involved in tackling these problems, with limited cooperation and data sharing among them. Most of these organizations have inadequate information technology resources, compared to their counterparts in the hard sciences who work on technical problems or in business who have ready access to financial, product, and customer information. This becomes increasingly challenging in a country like Canada, where often multiple levels of government share responsibility on social issues, and the needs and context can vary widely over our vast geography.

As a result, there is a large gap between the potential of data-driven information and its actual use in helping to address social problems, both in Canada and around the world. Effectively engaging with data involves transforming data and information into insights about policy and practice. Using these insights to tailor interventions can create more impactful solutions to complex social problems. The project will evaluate the problem and provide recommendations for the philanthropic sector, government, and social sector organizations themselves to solve this lack of engagement with data to address complex social problems in Canada by sub-sectors (eg. housing, health inequities, crime prevention, new comer settlement).

More about Open North:

Open North is part of the growing civic technology sector in North America. Open North has established itself as Canada’s leading not-for-profit specialized in open government and open data. Open North works globally and locally, with governments at levels, legislatures, independent media, academia, as well as the social and private sector to unlock the potential of open data and identify opportunities for increased collective impact.

Open North has recently lead two research projects with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). We connected with newcomer settlement organizations across Canada to understand their digital capacity and data needs. The initial project surveyed the data needs of the settlement sector, as it relates to research, reporting and data management. This work was supported by researching their digital capacity needs, concerning operational management and program delivery, with the aim of better informing government support. Building on this research, Open North will co-facilitate the second edition of the Data4Impact workshop at the Canadian Open Data Summit bringing together local and regional nonprofit, community and social organizations. The research student will contribute to this reoccurring national event by localizing lessons learned and documenting case studies in one of Montreal’s most diverse boroughs.

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