Facebook announces recipients of Digital Citizenship Research Grants

Feb 13, 2012 3:33pm

By Emily Eckland, NCSA Managing Editor of Digital Media

Facebook, an NCSA board member company, is awarding $200,000 in grant money as part of a safety program to encourage digital citizenship, prevent suicide and cyber bullying and learn how social media can impact the next generation of youth.

The goal of the Digital Citizenship Research Grants program is to better understand the challenges and opportunities associated with how kids are growing up in a world of social media and technology.

“Nothing is more important to Facebook than the safety of the people that use our site," says Facebook Chief Security Officer and NCSA Board Member Joe Sullivan. 

“We think that online safety is a responsibility shared amongst parents, teachers, teens, policy makers and companies like Facebook."

The grant recipients will research how teens, parents, educators and companies work together to foster digital citizenship, reduce cyber bullying and use social media in a productive manner.

Facebook announced the recipients of the first round of grants on Monday. They are:

  • Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education (SITE) – SITE, a society of the Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE) is an international, educational and professional organization dedicated to advancing knowledge, theory and quality of learning and teaching with information technology.
  • Define The Line, McGill University – A bilingual website to reduce cyber bullying and enhance responsible digital citizenship. The website is supported by a team of education and law students who develop resources, workshops and interactive online forums.
  • European Schoolnet (EUN) – A network for 30 Ministries of Education in Europe aimed at transforming teaching and learning through the integration of innovative technology.

Sullivan says working with partners like the grantees is critical to learning more about ways Facebook can continue to improve.

“We strive to be as innovative when it comes to safety as we are in every other part of our business, and the Digital Citizenship Research Grants program is just one small part of our overall safety program,” Sullivan says.

“We will continue to create new safety programs to emphasize our ongoing commitment.”

Facebook employees and members of its Safety Advisory Board reviewed nearly 100 applications from more than 10 countries since the program was announced in August.

For more information about the Digital Citizenship Research Grants, visit: https://www.facebook.com/fbsafety?sk=app_251849158225624