Access to Internet is a human right. At a time when efforts ought to be made to make Internet more accessible, inclusive and open, India is witnessing Internet shutdowns. SFLC.in’s research since 2012 shows that frequency of Internet shutdowns in India has been on the rise. Due to legal loopholes and lack of transparency in implementation of shutdowns, blackouts are imposed at sub national level for reasons that could be as trivial as to prevent cheating in examinations. As recorded in our report (https://sflc.in/living-digital-darkness-handbook-internet-shutdowns-india) these blackouts severely cripple and curtail people’s right to freedom of speech, expression, association and other related human rights. The affected include digital defenders like journalists, bloggers, activists, civil society organisations and others who try to bring empowerment to those at the grassroots.
SFLC.in is implementing a new project on Internet shutdowns. The project will be implemented in four states in India namely, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra and West Bengal. Key components of the project are 1. Create awareness and sensitize all stakeholders about Internet shutdowns 2. Build a long term sustainable community of support among people affected by internet shutdowns. 3. Recommend legal and policy solutions against Internet shutdowns.
For more information on our work on Internet shutdowns please visit https://internetshutdowns.in/
Four research assistants will be hired, one each from the states of Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra and West Bengal. The assistants will be stationed in their respective States and are expected to travel under this project.
Duties and Responsibilities
The research assistant will work under direct supervision of SFLC.in Project lead. S/he shall undertake the following tasks:
Assist in designing the research and campaign strategy.
Record information on Internet shutdowns in their respective States. Record (video and written) interviews of stakeholders. This will include information on the reasons for internet shutdowns, the situations before and after the shutdown, the duration, type and nature of shutdown.
Coordinate and reach out to stakeholders in Internet shutdown affected areas.
Hold meetings and focused group discussions with stakeholders. Record proceedings and observations from these.
Assist in implementing on-ground and online campaign.
Assist in organizing public meetings and consultations at state and at national level.
Assist in reaching out to people for signing online petitions.
Assist in forming community of support comprising citizens, journalists, civil society organisation and other affected people.
Reports of shutdowns.
Videos and reports/transcripts of interviews of people affected by Internet shutdowns.
Case studies and stories about problems and impact of internet shutdowns.
Creation of Community of support.
Required Experience and Skills
Degree in journalism, political science, law or any other social science is preferred.
Demonstrated experience in community mobilisation, communication and writing.
The duration of the contract will be 8 months. It is a delivery based position.
Compensation will commensurate with qualification and experience. It will include travel costs.
How to Apply
Interested candidates are requested to forward their applications with a resume and a
reference in free document format (.pdf or .odt) ONLY to email@example.com with a subject line -
"Application for Research Assistant".