Announcing the Collective Action in Tech Fellowship

In partnership with Collective Action in Tech, the Progressive International supports stories of tech activism in the Global South.
We're looking for tech workers, researchers, journalists and content creators.
We're looking for tech workers, researchers, journalists and content creators.

Collective Action in Tech (CAiT) is launching a Fellowship in partnership with the Progressive International and Logic Magazine and with funding from the Jain Family Institute.

Fellows will receive $500-1000 to share a story of collective action in the tech industry, past or present. This can be a protest, strike, display of solidarity, community-building effort or any other kind of collective project that empowers tech workers speaking out on workplace or broader social issues. For this fellowship, the “tech worker” has an expansive definition. We’re interested in stories not just of software engineers and data scientists, but of all workers in the tech sector including content moderators, warehouse workers, gig workers, and contractors. Content will be published on CAiT's website and through one of the media partners.

This year’s theme will focus on collective actions in the Global South (South and Central America, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia). The technology industry is a global one, but labor actions in the U.S. and Europe receive disproportionately more media attention than those in the Global South. We seek to address this inequality by giving talented content creators the resources and channels to tell their stories, with the hope that fellows will learn about the similarities and differences of tech worker struggle in various geographies of the Global South and North and bring these learnings to their own site of struggle.

Collective Action in Tech began in 2019 as a digital archive with the ambitious goal of cataloging all publicly reported collective actions in the technology industry around the world. Since then they have expanded to become a research and media project. Their mission is to provide data and insights on organizing in the tech industry, to find connections between different efforts, and to build worker power in tech by raising awareness of the long history of activism in the industry. The project is managed (collectively) by a group of volunteers that include current and former tech workers, journalists, and academics. You can learn more here.

Why Your Story Matters

The idea behind the Collective Action in Tech Fellowship is to provide resources and channels for talented content creators to share their accounts of collective action in the technology industry. Applicants should either be tech workers themselves or have the trust and good faith of the tech worker community they cover. Journalists and academics are welcome but an institutional affiliation is NOT necessary to apply. We are interested in accounts that might otherwise go unreported or underreported in the global press.

What We Are Looking For

Content can take a variety of forms including written accounts, audiovisual recordings, interviews, or virtual exhibitions. Once selected, you will work closely with members of the Collective Action in Tech group and with the fellowship media partners to produce a piece of content for a wider audience. You can find a definition of what constitutes a “collective action in tech” here.

Actions may be historical or present-day, and submissions from individuals or groups of up to three people are welcome. It’s worth noting, we are interested in the broader story of how the action came together, what strategies were successful, and how workers came to form a community.

At the moment, only pieces written or translated into English can be considered.

What is Offered

For every fellow accepted into the program,:

  • $500-1000 per project based on team size and resources needed for the project
  • Publication on the Collective Action in Tech website AND with one of the media partners
  • Membership in a community of fellows and CAiT members and contributors; optional virtual workshops for providing feedback and reviewing pieces

The fellowship will run from March 15th to June 15th, 2021. Fellows will be required to attend a minimum of two Zoom meetings to meet other recipients and to offer a brief description of their work. For those who are interested, there are opportunities to become further involved with CAiT’s larger project. 3-6 fellows will be recruited for this year’s program.

How To Apply

Please fill out this short application by March 1st (any time zone). If you encounter any issues, you can email [email protected]

Media Partners

We are excited to partner with Collective Action in Tech and Logic Magazine for this fellowship. More partners may be added in the coming weeks.

Every fellow will be matched with a media partner that best represents the scope of their story within the first few weeks of the fellowship. Media partners commit to providing feedback on a piece of content as it is being researched and produced. At the end of this process, your piece will be published on CAiT’s website and through the media partner to ensure it reaches a wide audience.

For examples of content and more information, please visit Collective Action in Tech.

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