Kensington Market / Updates

Job Opportunity: Seeking Graduate Student Researcher for Community-Engaged, Qualitative Research in Toronto’s Kensington Market

The Faculty of Music and the University of Toronto Ethnography Lab seeks one or two graduate student research assistants to support a joint research project “Keeping Kensington “Kensington”: Value and Affordability in Toronto’s Kensington Market.” This project is funded by the Connaught Community Research Partnership Program. Graduate student researchers will undertake engaged, qualitative, online and in-person research in Kensington Market guided by questions developed by community and academic research partners. 

Time period: June 2022 to October 2022, with some flexibility. Estimated 10-15 hours per week, with flexibility based on community events and research schedule. 

Location: UofT  St. George Campus, Kensington Market neighborhood, and online. Research assistants must be located in Toronto or able to travel to Toronto regularly for in-person research and meetings.

Remuneration: $35.00/hour + vacation & benefits, in accordance with UofT employment rules.  

Due Date: Applications for the Graduate Student Researcher position are due May 9, 2022 at 6pm. Shortlisted candidates will be contacted by May 16 at the latest. 

Project description, position details, application requirements, and contact information are below. 

Project Description 

“Keeping Kensington ‘Kensington’” is a multi-year collaborative project between Ethnomusicology and the Anthropology Department’s Ethnography Lab aims to meet the needs of resident-led activist organization Friends of Kensington Market (FOKM) and the Kensington Market Business Improvement Area (KMBIA) for research on the complex interplay of value, (un)affordability, and culture that challenge this distinctive Toronto neighborhood. Faculty and graduate students in ethnomusicology and anthropology will support community partner organizations’ needs for research and knowledge mobilization on community-identified priorities. These include, but are not limited to the significance of informality and social/cultural tolerance in KM, and how informality and tolerance can be documented, planned, or preserved in the context of increasing unaffordability. This community-university partnership develops already-existing relationships initiated through the Ethnography Lab’s ongoing Kensington Market Research Project (KMRP) and Dr. Farzaneh Hemmasi’s SSHRC-funded research on music, sound, and noise in Kensington Market.  

Duties and Responsibilities

 The Graduate Student Researcher Assistant(s) will: 

  • Attend and take notes at community meetings and other events (participant-observation) 
  • Conduct interviews with community members 
  • Participate in regular consultations with community partners 
  • Participate in creating and presenting innovative forms of knowledge that serve the goals of community research partners 
  • Compile bibliographies of relevant media documents and academic and policy materials relevant to community partner goals 
  • Meet regularly with PI Farzaneh Hemmasi, other researchers, and representatives from community partner organizations to provide updates on research and refine goals
  • Prepare for and participate in occasional methods workshops and reading group meetings
  • Present research findings in community and university forums.
  • Particularly experienced candidates may also be considered for project management duties. Please note interest and relevant background if applicable.

Basic Qualifications: 

  • Enrolled and in good standing in a University of Toronto masters or doctoral program in sociocultural anthropology, geography and urban planning, or a related discipline emphasizing qualitative research skills
  • Previous experience conducting qualitative research (ethnography, interviewing, oral history, etc.) 
  • Enthusiastic learner with strong organizational skills 
  • Work independently and meet deadlines 
  • Collaborate well with others 


  • Interest in issues of urban development and community/neighbourhood grassroots activism 
  • Prior experience with social justice-oriented activism and/or working for community organizations  
  • Experience with engaged research and/or with community organizations 
  • Experience with working collaboratively on team research projects 
  • Interest in or experience with multi-modal and/or non-academic forms of research communication 

Applications must include: 

  • CV 
  • Short bio (100 words) 
  • A paragraph (max. 250 words) explaining your qualifications for and interest in the position. 


Send all inquiries and application documents to project Principal Investigator Farzaneh Hemmasi at 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s