Written by: Charlene Aviles, SFU Student

Pivot 2020 has partnered with SFU Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue, Canadian Council for Youth Prosperity, Canadian Urban Institute, INM (Institut de Nouveau Monde), Tamarack Institute, and Youthful Cities to conduct remote research on 27 Canadian cities. 

During the COVID-19 pandemic, youth are experiencing unemployment and “massive interruptions to social connection and support services,” according to Pivot’s homepage. By “surveying youth, interviewing community members, and collecting benchmark information,” Pivot’s interdisciplinary team will collect data on their respective cities. Their research will study “education, employment, entrepreneurship, financial access, [and] gender equity.”

In addition to providing youth with employment, Pivot also plans to “develop an open and accessible web-based information hub that centers youth informed data, priorities and opportunities with cities, organizations, leaders to inform Canada’s post-pandemic urban recovery.

“The findings will populate an open and accessible database grounded in priorities and opportunities by youth that can be used by planners, organizations, governments and more.”

When asked about how Pivot 2020 intends to ensure their research sample is representative of the Canadian population, Program Director Aakanksha John explained that Pivot has “gone through extensive ethics reviews and EDI (equity, diversity, and inclusion) audits.”

Data from their city profiles will also include demographics for each city, which will inform their surveys, interviews, and indexes.

As stated by Pivot’s Communication Manager Rachel Wong, by hiring youth researchers to conduct research on their local cities, Pivot aims to ensure that the project recruits a diverse team and that their research sample is representative of the Canadian population.

According to John, “Pivot is also focused on what youth are going to do after they finish the program, so [they’ve] been working really closely with [their] wonderful program partner, the Canadian Council of Youth and Prosperity, to ensure that youth that are doing this work with us are really well-supported in terms of virtual success and workforce strategy.”