Research, Centres, Projects, Labs and Conferences

Digital Democracies Group

The Digital Democracies Group at Simon Fraser University (SFU) integrates research in the humanities and data sciences to address questions of equality and social justice. It will combat the proliferation of online “echo chambers” and discriminatory algorithms by creating alternative data literacies and paradigms for connection: from applications and methods to transforming hostile social media exchanges into productive dialogues, to critical analyses of fake news and its historical evolution.

Faculty: Wendy Chun


Media Democracy Day

Since 2001, The Media Democracy Project works hard to create a significant presence for noncommercial media in Canada. Our small team brings diverse communities together with leading media makers, activists, and scholars to discuss the relationship between media and democracy.

Faculty: Stuart Poyntz, Bob Hackett


Action ADE

Every year, two million Canadians go to the emergency department because of the harmful and unintended consequences of their medications. The Action ADE research project brings together health care professionals, government officials, academic researchers and patients to design and implement the tools we need to prevent adverse drug events.

Faculty: Ellen Balka



The Applied Communication and Technology Laboratory (ACT Lab) is engaged in research on the intersection between communication technology and cultural creation. It brings together graduate students, practitioners and researchers to study a wide variety of applications of advanced technology to education, community, entertainment, and the arts.

Faculty: Andrew Feenberg



Created in 1997, the Assessment of Technology in Context Design Lab (ATIC-DL) is a research facility specializing in research related to the human dimensions of technological change. The ATIC-DL’s research work is based on the philosophy that technological systems are more than simply machines, and in order for technology to work properly, a wide range of issues related to how people do their work must be considered. Projects use qualitative research and participatory design methods to improve technology design.

Faculty: Ellen Balka


Centre for Policy Studies on Culture and Communities

The Centre for Policy Studies on Culture and Communities (CPCC) grew out of a multi-year project teaching cultural policy at SFU in partnership with local arts and community groups. From 2005–2008, SFU, in partnership with the Creative City Network of Canada, conducted a cross-Canada review of the state of Canadian built cultural infrastructure, assembling a Center for Expertise on Culture and Communities with a separate advisory board of notable cultural scholars. In 2008, SFU’s Senate approved the permanent Centre, renaming it the Center for Policy Studies on Culture and Communities.


Centre for Policy Research on Science & Technology

The Centre for Policy Research on Science & Technology (CPROST) engages in research on the relationship between public policy and technology. The Centre brings together practitioners and scholars to study the interaction of advances in science and technology, their implemetation in the marketplace, and their impacts on community and individual interests. Several CMNS faculty members are members of CPROST.

Faculty: Peter Anderson
Research | Centre

Critical Ethnography and Digital Heritage Initiative

The Critical Ethnography and Digital Heritage Initiative (CEDHI) is dedicated to designing innovative methods for safeguarding cultural heritage resources using digital technologies. With dedicated laboratory space with the School of Communication at SFU’s Burnaby campus, the CEDHI will respond to the urgent need for new strategies to document, preserve and control access to cultural heritage resources in art worlds and Indigenous communities. 

Faculty: Jan Marontate


GeNa Lab

The GeNA Lab investigates the development, adoption, and social impact of communication, blockchain, and big data. We also work with industry partners building next generation communication technologies in health and genomics, social media, blockchain, and big data. 

Faculty: Peter Chow-White


Global Media Monitoring and Analysis Lab

The Global Media Monitoring and Analysis Lab is a unique and state of the art research facility for critical media analysis and assessment in a digitalized and globalized media environment.


Media Analysis Lab

The Media Analysis Lab provides a creative environment for learning about, analyzing and researching the role of mediated social communication. Its mandate is to generate a synergy between the critical analysis of media and their application in democratic public communication, particularly in the areas of education, advocacy and community development.


Media Saturated World: Helping Kids Reduce The Risk

The goals of this project are to help make our children’s lives safer and healthier by reducing the risks associated with TV watching, Internet use and playing with video games. The project was coordinated by the Media Analysis Lab at Simon Fraser University in partnership with the North Vancouver Parents Advisory Council and the North Vancouver District Board of Education. Funding for this pilot project has been provided by the Ministry of Justice Canada.


NewsWatch Canada

NewsWatch Canada undertakes independent research on the diversity and thoroughness of news coverage in Canada’s media, with a focus on identifying blindspots and double-standards. 

Faculty: Robert Hackett, Shane Gunster


Public Safety Deployable

The Field Operational Test Facility for Next-Generation Interoperable Mission-Critical Communications Project addresses the need for a detailed in-field testing capability to validate systems necessary to meet operational requirements of deployed next-generation mobile Public Safety Broadband Networking (PSBN) systems for emergency responders, especially in rural and remote regions.


Telematics Research Lab (TRL) and its PolyLAB for Advanced Collaborative Networking Unit

For over two and a half decades the Telematics Research Lab (TRL) and its PolyLAB for Advanced Collaborative Networking Unit have been engaged in the design and development of advanced next-generation disaster resilient communication systems to address the need for transportable, integrated, computing and communications solutions to support mission critical operations, ranging from emergency response through to human and robotic space exploration.

Faculty: Peter Anderson, Stephen Braham

Research | Lab

The Disinformation Project

The Disinformation Project at the School of Communication is a SSHRC funded research that examines fake news discourses on mainstream media and social media in Canada. 

Faculty: Ahmed Al-Rawi


Twitter Capture and Analysis Toolset

SFU-TCAT allows for three types of 'track' queries, single word/hashtag, two or more words, or exact phrases. 

For setting up your Twitter searches as part of your research at SFU’s School of Communication, please contact Dr. Ahmed Al-Rawi (

Faculty: Ahmed Al-Rawi, Peter Chow-White, Daniel Ahadi, Frederik Lesage


Sonic Research Studio

The Sonic Research Studio is home to the World Soundscape Project (WSP) and is currently a site for critical sound studies research in the areas of urban soundscape design and livability, cultural soundscape studies, sonic media, sound in gaming, and more.

Faculty: Milena Droumeva, Barry Truax, David Murphy


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