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Indspire Research Knowledge Nest

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Indspire Research Knowledge Nest

Fostering growth. Inciting change. Shaping the future.


The Indspire Research Knowledge Nest is the first Indigenous research program of its kind in Canada.  With data analysis skills rapidly becoming critical to economic success, the Research Nest is poised to seize this exciting opportunity to foster Indigenous engagement and leadership in quantitative research and data science roles. The program will be guided by an Advisory Committee of researchers, leaders, and key stakeholders who will provide direction and input on the development of this important initiative.

Why is research important to Indigenous peoples in Canada?

There is currently no national repository that consistently tracks post-secondary and labour market data for First Nations, Inuit, and Métis students in Canada. This data gap limits policy makers, industry, organizations, and community’s capacity to make informed decisions in the area of education for Indigenous peoples. Indspire’s Research Knowledge Nest aims to fill this gap through Indigenous-led research to provide evidence for decision making and identify how education supports affect labour market outcomes, the socio-economic wellbeing of Indigenous peoples, and community prosperity.

Sponsorship Opportunities

If you’re interested in exploring partnership opportunities with us, please reach out to Kate Espina, Director, Major Gifts at kespina@indspire.ca. Click here to learn more about our initial partners.

Thank you to our supporters

Major Supporter

Project Supporter

Hodgson Family Foundation


Diane Lookman Fund

Research Nest Initiatives

Research Nest Focus Areas

Indspire’s Research Knowledge Nest develops research on the following topics:

  • Barriers for Indigenous peoples to post-secondary education and graduation
  • Links between economic development, labour market participation and education
  • Implementation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action in post-secondary institutions and how this implementation affects Indigenous students
  • The impact of Indspire’s programs, using data collection tools such as Indspire’s National Education Survey
  • Best practices for compiling current data holdings and developing future data collection processes

New research topics will be developed based on Indigenous-led research directions from Indspire Research Knowledge Nest Advisory Committee, the Research Nest’s Research Assistants, and Indspire’s Board of Directors.

Research Assistant Program

The Research Assistant program provides a supportive learning environment for up-and-coming Indigenous researchers to receive hands-on work experience in quantitative research and data analysis roles.


The work of Indspire’s Research Knowledge Nest will provide decision-makers with key insights into the educational attainment of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples in Canada, fostering a new understanding of how education supports the overall wellbeing of Indigenous peoples.

Check out the reports by the Indspire Research Knowledge Nest below:

An Introspective Look into Barriers and Facilitators to Accessing Post-Secondary Indigenous Support (2023)

Barriers and Facilitators for Accessing Indigenous Supports – Literature Review (2022)

Indigenous Learners Mental Health Needs – Literature Review (2022)

Key Components of Indigenous Pedagogies – Literature Review (2022)

Story as Knowledge: Experiences of Early Leaving & Persistence from Indigenous Post-Secondary Students (2022)

The Importance of Indigenous Languages: An Investigation of Sense of Belonging and Mental Health Among Students and Non-Students (2022)

Paths to Reconciliation: An Overview of the Current Educational Landscape (2022)

Journeys to Success: Empowering Indigenous Visions of Success Through Photovoice (2022)

Navigating Two Worlds: Paths to Indigenous Career Success (2021)

Holding Our Ground: Indigenous Student Post-Secondary Persistence & Early Leaving (2021)

So We Can All Thrive: The Importance of Indigenous Organizations’ Support for Indigenous Post-Secondary Students (2021)

Literature Review: Decolonizing and Indigenizing Mentorship (2021)

Following the Path (2021)

Indigenous Post-Secondary Learners and the COVID-19 Pandemic (2021)

Financing Post-Secondary Education (2021)

Reciprocity in Terms of Post-Graduate Employment for Building Brighter Futures Applicants (2020)

Program Related Work Experience and Academic Success for Indigenous Post-Secondary Learners (2020)

Supporting Indigenous Caregivers Through Their Post-Secondary Experience (2020)

Building Brighter Futures: Multiple Award Recipients (2020)

Nurturing Capacity Synthesis Report – Collective Knowledge on Process, Best Practices and Lessons Learned (2020)

Insights into Indigenous Post-Secondary Graduates’ Experiences in the Canadian Workforce (2020)

Building Brighter Futures: Bursaries, Scholarships and Awards Recipients’ Outcomes Report (2020)





Are you interested in a Research Assistant position? Or are you an established First Nations, Inuit, or Métis research professional who’d like to be a mentor? Maybe you’re a decision-maker or potential partner who’d like to know more about how the Research Nest’s work could benefit you?

We’d love to hear from you. Reach out to us at research@indspire.ca or give us a call at 1-855-463-7747.