Breaking Campus News. Launching Media Careers.
University of Michigan professor receives ‘anti-racism’ grant to study ‘algorithmic reparations’

Another awardee will study why Latinos are racist against black people

The University of Michigan’s Anti-Racism Collaborative at its National Center for Institutional Diversity announced $110,000 in grants for research projects.

The grant money will support projects that “aim to inform anti-racist action.”

Six different projects received funding, including one on “Algorithmic Reparation” and another on the “anti-Black racism that permeates Latinx communities.”

Neither the NCID nor the professors on the two aforementioned projects would respond to media questions from The College Fix sent in the past two weeks.

The reparation research will be “rooted in theories of Intersectionality” and study “reparative algorithms.” The researchers will “name, unmask, and undo allocative and representational harms as they materialize in sociotechnical form,” according to researchers Apryl Williams (pictured) and Jenny Davis.

Williams is a professor at the university while Jenny Davis is a professor at the Australian National University.

The taxpayer-funded project will include a “collaborative workshop where social scientists, technologists, computer scientists, activists, and policy experts can come together to test the feasibility, design code, and plan for the implementation of algorithmic reparation.”

“More Allies Than Adversaries: An Exploratory Qualitative Study on Allyship and Racial Solidarity between Latinx Immigrant and Black Youth in Baltimore,” will include “[p]ushing back on anti-Black racism that permeates Latinx communities and drawing on an intersectionality framework.”

“Moreover, this study explores the possibility of existing or potential solidarity and allyship between these two marginalized groups as a mechanism to develop collaborative forms of anti-racist action,” social work Professor Ashley Cureton’s description said.

The Fix emailed Professors Williams, Davis, and Cureton and spokesperson Charlotte Ezzo to ask for copies of the proposals, a specific funding breakdown for each of the projects, and the motivation and goals of the research. The Fix also asked the NCID for the criteria for the projects.

Rick Fitzgerald, spokesperson for the Big Ten university, answered on behalf of the diversity center and its recipients.

He would not provide copies of the proposals paid for by the taxpayer-funded university. “That’s all the information we have to share,” Fitzgerald told The Fix on December 17, in reference to a link that had since been added into the announcement.

The May 12 link provides general information on how to apply and says that grants will be given out for amounts between $5,000 to $20,000.

The College Fix followed-up on December 22 and asked for confirmation that the university was refusing to turn over the grant proposals and that it would block any official public record request for the documents.

“This is all the information we have to share at this time, now that the fall semester has ended,” Fitzgerald said. “You are always free to make a FOIA [Freedom of Information Act] request.”

Grant proposals should embrace critical race theory

The criteria for the projects defined “anti-racism” as “coordinated action against power relationships that perpetuate white supremacy and attendant hierarchies of race,” citing the work of critical race theorist Kimberle Crenshaw.

“Our objective is to fund projects that focus on marginalized, grassroots and collaborative forms of anti-racist action,” the May 12 announcement said. These projects should have the “potential to transform how we resist structural racism and how we relate to each other as racialized subjects.”

The grants should not be confused with the $260,000 given out last year by the University of Michigan for projects on “combating racism.”

The “Confronting and Combating Racism’ grants” were funded through the Ann Arbor university’s Center for Social Solutions and Poverty Solutions.

MORE: Check out the cancel culture database

IMAGE: AprylWilliams.com

Like The College Fix on Facebook / Follow us on Twitter

Please join the conversation about our stories on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Reddit, MeWe, Rumble, Gab, Minds and Gettr.

About the Author
Jack Applewhite -- University of Georgia