Marcia Rioux Postdoctoral Research Award in Disability and Work

About the award

December 10th is Human Rights Day. This year marks the 75th anniversary of one of the world’s most revolutionary global commitments: The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Inclusive Design for Employment Access (IDEA) in collaboration with Citizens With Disabilities - Ontario (CWDO) is marking the occasion with a call for applications to the Dr. Marcia Rioux Postdoctoral Research Award.

Dr. Marcia Rioux was a distinguished Professor and Professor Emerita in the School of Health Policy and Management in York University’s Faculty of Health. Rioux was a driving force in the promotion of disability rights and the enhancement of opportunities for marginalized people. She played a leadership role in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and published widely on disability and human rights.

This award will be given to a researcher who embodies the values espoused by Dr. Marcia Rioux. The recipient of the award will conduct research on projects that focus on social justice and the rights of persons with disabilities, and advance workplace capacity for recruitment, hiring, onboarding, retention, mentorship, support, and advancement of persons with disabilities, across the full range of employment opportunities.

Marcia believed ‘disability is not measles’ and that everyone needed to be educated in understanding that there is a human rights and justice agenda. This fellowship educates and promotes research that advances the progressive realization of disability rights. - Ezra Zubrow.

Eligibility criteria

Submissions are encouraged from applicants with an interest in transdisciplinary, applied research in social justice and the rights of persons with disabilities at work, with a focus on employer capacity in the area of accessibility and inclusion. We particularly encourage candidates who identify as a person with a disability to apply for the position.

  1. Applicants must have completed a PhD (or equivalent) at the time they begin the fellowship, in one or more fields within the social or health sciences, and have a strong qualitative analysis and community engagement skills.
  2. Applicants must have knowledge in qualitative and co-design methodology.
  3. Applicants must be within five (5) years of completion of their PhD, have held no more than one other postdoctoral fellowship (or equivalent), and have not held another academic job as an independent investigator (e.g., assistant professorship).
  4. Applicants should have an interest in approaching research questions from a multi/transdisciplinary perspective.
  5. Applicants should have an interest in working closely with stakeholders and community partners.
  6. Applicants must hold Canadian citizenship, have permanent residency status in Canada or be eligible for a Canadian work visa at the time of application.
  7. Applicants cannot hold another major salary award in addition to the Marcia Rioux Postdoctoral Research Award.

Conditions of the appointment

  1. The successful candidate will conduct scholarly inquiry within the priority areas relevant to IDEA (see and is expected to contribute scholarly work in the form of peer-reviewed papers, grant proposals and presentations during the tenure of the award. There are various partnered projects within IDEA that the recipient will support in addition to developing her/his/their own research program.
  2. Time allocation for the candidates for her/his/their own research program will be approximately 25%, with the remainder of the time dedicated to collaborative research projects, some of which the candidate may lead.
  3. The award is for up to two years (i.e., one year with the possibility of a one-year renewal). If the award is terminated during its course, the award will be prorated.
  4. The successful candidate will work with Dr. Rebecca Gewurtz and will submit brief interim written reports to Dr. Gewurtz at three, nine, 12 and 18 months into the term. A final detailed report must be filed prior to the conclusion of the award term.
  5. The award currently stands at approximately $65,000 CDN per annum, plus a benefit package and conference travel support. Only one award is awarded.

How to apply

Applicants must complete and submit an application form. The following materials are required for the application:

  • Covering letter and curriculum vitae.
  • Copies of transcript of academic records (graduate, complete with description of grading scale employed). Official transcripts are not required.
  • Abstract of the post-doctoral research proposal (maximum 250 words).
  • A statement of her/his/their planned program of research to be conducted during the term of the fellowship (maximum 3 pages). The statement should be written by the applicant and should include the scientific and career benefits expected to be derived from the research and its relevance to the mission of IDEA.
  • Applicants must also arrange for three (3) academic reference to be sent directly to IDEA.

Prospective candidates can email their application to Sabrina Chaudhry at The posting will be up until the position is filled.

Evaluation process and notification of award

Applications will be reviewed by a panel of IDEA senior staff and evaluated based on scientific merit, potential innovativeness, feasibility of proposal and alignment with IDEA’s mission and vision.


If you have any questions, please contact:

Sabrina Chaudhry
National Manager
Inclusive Design for Employment Access (IDEA)

About the award sponsors

IDEA is a social innovation laboratory focused on helping create stronger and more diverse labour markets that include persons with disabilities, through knowledge to practice. IDEA develops evidence-informed tools and resources through co-design with partners that help advance workplace capacity for inclusive employment. The initiative is funded by the New Frontiers in Research Transformation Stream program for a period of six years. Dr. Rebecca Gewurtz, Associate Professor at McMaster University, is director of IDEA.

Citizens With Disabilities Ontario (CWDO) is a provincial, cross-disability organization committed to protecting and advancing the rights of all persons to participate fully in the civil, cultural, economic, political, and social life of their communities. CWDO actively promotes the rights, freedoms and responsibilities of persons with disabilities through community development, social action, and member support and referral. Our primary activity is public education and awareness about the social, economic and physical barriers that prevent the full inclusion of persons with disabilities in Ontario. CWDO is also a member of the Council of Canadians with Disabilities.

Application deadline: