Consultancy for a Canadian adaptation of the Healthy News & Information Ecosystem Framework

The Hamilton Community Foundation, the Inspirit Foundation and the McConnell Foundation are seeking the services of a consultant in order to advance work related to the adaptation of the Healthy News & Information Ecosystem Framework.

The Healthy News & Information Ecosystem Diagnostic Framework, developed by Impact Architects is a tool for:

  • assessing the health of news and information ecosystems;  
  • identifying specific opportunities to fill information gaps;
  • strengthening channels of information that already exist.

Discussions with a group of Canadian funders indicated interest in the playbook’s potential to build a foundational dataset of the information ecosystem in Canada. This framework will help build our understanding of where Canadians obtain their news, what credibility they assign to it, and what information needs are not being met. A number of funders are interested in adapting the framework to the Canadian context. A key driver for interest in this work is its potential to help us support equity-seeking organizations and communities to improve their information’s ecosystems and to amplify underrepresented voices, including Indigenous narratives.

Mandate

The consultant will be responsible for the adaptation of the Healthy News & Information Ecosystem Playbook to a Canadian context. We expect this work to be of use to communities and organisations across the country. 

Responsibilities and Tasks

  • Review and familiarize themselves with Impact Architect’s Healthy News & Information Ecosystem Diagnostic Framework, tools and indicators.
  • Conduct a landscape review of comparable indicators and information sources in Canada with a particular focus on underrepresented communities and groups with barriers to information access and that are particularly susceptible to mis and dis information.
    • This can include: data to understand communities, existing information providers, information flows and other indicators of the health of local news and information ecosystems in Canada.
  • Consult a variety of stakeholders in the information and media ecosystem field including, but not limited to: media outlets, community organisations, journalism researchers, etc. 
    • The project team will facilitate introductions to different stakeholders and we are keen to hear from people in your network as well. The consultant will be responsible for providing recommendations on who to consult and for designing an outreach plan. 
  • Participate proactively in discussions with various stakeholders involved in the pilot project: steering committee, community members, external consultants, funders.
  • Identify, in collaboration with the steering committee, criteria for potential communities for a pilot adaptation of the playbook. 

Deliverables

  • A Healthy News & Information Ecosystem Diagnostic Framework adapted to the Canadian context;
  • A set of recommendations for the design of an action plan for the Playbook’s implementation in Canada.

Timeline

  • The project will begin in January 2022 and be completed by March 2022. The timeline details will be discussed at the beginning of the project. 

Budget

The budget is a maximum of $ 15,000 (excluding taxes). Please include your rate in the proposal. 

Profile Required

  • Familiarity with the Canadian journalism and media sector at local and national levels, with a strong understanding of equity, diversity and inclusion in this space.
  • Proven research expertise through academic or work experience. Experience designing and conducting participatory research is an asset.
  • Expertise in strategic analysis through a lens of systemic change and cross-sector collaboration.
  • Bilingual spoken English and French;
  • Knowledge of the community sector in Canada is an asset.

How to Apply

Please submit a work proposal of no more than 4 pages by no later than January 17, 2021 to:

Marie-Caroline Juneau, Senior Program Officer, McConnell Foundation at mjuneau@mcconnellfoundation.ca. Interviews will be conducted with a short-list of applicants and the successful consultant will be selected by January 2022.

Proposals should include relevant previous experience, methodologies you might use, and a budget including anticipated time required and rate. The Curriculum Vitae of the consultant(s) should be included as an appendix.

A note on Conflict of Interest: Should the consultant be considering applying for funding from foundations involved in the project –including McConnell, Inspirit and the Hamilton Community Foundation– and the work the consultant executes as part of this contract provides them an opportunity to influence criteria and / or funding decisions with regard to a potential future application, then the consultant will be considered to be in a conflict of interest. Should this be the case, please let us know so we can discuss the context and nuances of your particular situation.