Date limite : 10 December 2021

OBVIA/IVADO Master’s Scholarship Indigenous Peoples and AI: Challenges of Power, Inequality and Discrimination

OBVIA and IVADO are offering a scholarship to a student in Master’s degree program with thesis to work on issues of power, inequality and discrimination in artificial intelligence (AI) specific to indigenous peoples.


This scholarship aims to encourage the development of new knowledge on the social impact of AI on Indigenous Peoples, particularly on issues related to existing inequalities or risks of discrimination in the development and deployment of AI systems. It encourages interdisciplinary research projects, mobilizing indigenous knowledge and methodologies, and/or in partnership with stakeholders/communities impacted by AI.

Information Session

Attend the online information session to learn the details of the award and to ask questions.

November 2, 2021, 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.


Eligibility requirements

  • Be enrolled or have an offer of admission and plan to register full-time in a Master’s degree program with thesis in the province of Quebec;
  • Be a graduate in a discipline related to digital intelligence or social sciences;
  • Be supervised by either:
    • A professor from one of the following universities: Université de Montréal, HEC Montréal, Polytechnique Montréal, or McGill University (If you are a professor at McGill University, you can be a supervisor provided that you are also a full member of one of our IVADO research groups (Mila, CIRRELT, GERAD, CERC Data Science for Real-Time Decision Making, CRM, Tech3Lab))
    • or by an OBVIA research member.

Evaluation Criteria

The evaluation committee will rank the applications according to their excellence, paying particular attention to the following criteria:

  • Relevance of the research project presented and its link to issues of power, inequality and discrimination in AI for indigenous populations;
  • Quality of the academic record (publications, presentations, other achievements, communication skills, ability to adapt to different contexts and to converse across disciplines, implications in society and academic results) and adequacy of the experience with the project proposal
  • Quality of the project (precision, assumptions, methodology);
  • Involvement of stakeholders and impacted communities;
  • Impact of the project.

In the case of equal application, priority will be given to Indigenous students

Other responsibilities of the student in relation to the scholarship

  • Share research results effectively with a variety of audiences (academic papers, editorials, opinion pieces, blogs, conferences, interviews, etc.);
  • Develop meaningfull relationships with Indigenous stakeholders/communities concerned with issues of bias and discrimination in AI;
  • Publish research results in scientific reviews;
  • Contribute to OBVIA and IVADO events and training activities;
  • Work in collaboration with OBVIA and IVADO researchers and advisors;
  • Complete the Ethics+EDI training in digital intelligence offered by IVADO.

Funding and Duration

This scholarship is in the amount of $20,000 per year for a maximum of six sessions or two years. It is awarded for a 12-months period and can be renewed once subject to the submission of progress reports deemed satisfactory by OBVIA and IVADO.

IVADO offers financial support of up to $10,000 to cover travel expenses related to the research project, for the full duration of the funding (2 years).

OBVIA offers financial support of up to $10,000 for specific needs related to the research (e.g., disability requiring attendant services or adapted transportation, childcare services, etc.) for the entire duration of the funding (2 years).

Equity, Diversity & Inclusion

OBVIA and IVADO promote and integrate the values of equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) in all of its activities. An open and diverse community promotes the inclusion of the voices of those who have been under-represented or discouraged. OBVIA and IVADO welcomes individuals/projects who/that have demonstrated their commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion values and will help us increase our capacity for diversity in the broadest sense. We encourage applications from any underrepresented group.

Submitting an application

The application, including the application form the requested documents must be submitted in a single email to You will receive an acknowledgement of receipt.

Download Application Form

(1) The applicant must indicate on the application form:

  • General identifying information;
  • Project title, description and relevance of the project with regard to the purpose of this scholarship;
  • Supervisor’s informations;
  • Information about academic background, awards and honors obtained;
  • Written papers and presentations;
  • Participation in research projects and training courses;

(2) The applicant must submit the following documents with the application form:

  • A cover letter demonstrating awareness of Indigenous realities;
  • A copy of the diplomas obtained and university transcripts for all years of university studies completed or not (certificate, diploma, bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, etc.) (combined in a single .pdf file);
  • Two letters of support, including a letter from the professor agreeing to supervise the applicant;
  • Acknowledgements from the publisher, if applicable, for all papers accepted for publication, papers and abstracts in past or future conferences (combined in one .pdf file). For previously published papers, please provide the list of references in the form.


Application opening: October 15, 2021
Application deadline: December 10, 2021
Notification of results: February 14, 2022

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The International Observatory on the Societal Impacts of AI and Digital Technology is made possible by the support of the Fonds de recherche du Québec.