Harvard University Center for African Studies: Postdoctoral Research Fellowship Program

About

The Center for African Studies Postdoctoral Research Fellowship Program is aimed at providing opportunities for postdoctoral candidates to conduct independent research, publish, and increase knowledge in their fields of study that will be beneficial to the African continent and to prepare them to be successful in their chosen career paths. An applicant should have received their PhD (preference will be given to those who completed PhD in past five years) and hold an academic appointment at a university or research institution in Africa. This includes those with a commitment of appointment at the time of application. The fellowship will support the development of a research project at selected Harvard University schools, departments, or laboratories in the field of their choice.

The program offers 18-month postdoctoral fellowships with 12 months spent at the scholars’ home institution and six months spent in stipend-supported residency at Harvard University. Please consult the list of eligible institutions and eligibility requirements before applying.

Eligibility

The program is established for African based researchers who intend to continue/return to work in African academia. Fellows will be selected based on academic talent in their fields and will have an opportunity to work on their pedagogical and research skills to further their professional development. Fellows will have completed their respective doctoral programs at institutions from anywhere around the world (preference will be given to those who completed PhD in past five years). PhD holders who currently hold a paid academic appointment, which will be active through the duration of the fellowship period, with any of the following institutions are eligible to apply.

Eligible Universities (2021-2022)

Egypt | Cairo University
Ethiopia | University of Addis Ababa
Ghana | University of Ghana
Kenya | University of Nairobi
Nigeria | Ahmadu Bello University
Nigeria | University of Ibadan
Rwanda | University of Rwanda
Senegal | Cheikh Anta Diop University
Sierra Leone | University of Sierra Leone
South Africa | University of the Witwatersrand
South Africa | University of Johannesburg
Tanzania | University of Dar es Salaam
Uganda | Makerere University

  • Applicants must have received a PhD or equivalent doctoral-level research degree (preference will be given to those who completed PhD in past five years) in any discipline with strategic interest to the African continent and must hold a paid academic appointment at one of the eligible institutions.
  • Applicants who have not yet formally received their degree must present evidence of having completed the academic requirements before commencing the Fellowship.
  • Applicants must identify a Harvard faculty mentor to support research and scholarly work; additionally, they should identify a second mentor at their home institution.
  • Both mentors are required to submit letters of recommendation during the application process.
  • Applicants should have English language proficiency.
  • Applicants must have support from their home institutions to pursue an 18-month fellowship appointment, six months of which will be spent in a stipend-supported residency in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Throughout the fellowship period, fellows will have access to their mentor at both institutions as well as Harvard's library resources and seminar/conference opportunities.
  • Applicants should have an academic appointment at one of the listed eligible universities or include a letter from the institution that such an appointment is forthcoming during the fellowship period.

Position Responsibilities

Under the terms of appointment, fellows will be required to assume the following responsibilities:

  • Assume primary responsibility for the development of their research and career, in consult with their faculty mentors and other collaborators.
  • Play an active role in seeking career and research advice, both from the faculty mentors and from other faculty members as appropriate.
  • Submit a report describing all work carried out at Harvard University and home institution during the research period. The report must be submitted two weeks prior to the end of their fellowship.
  • Make mention in any publication, presentation, or interview of their status as a CAS fellow as well as those published or carried out as a result of their fellowship.
  • Notify CAS of any grant, scholarship, or funding obtained from any public or private organization for the same or a different research project.
  • Fellows should ensure funds are utilized for purposes as defined in the fellowship. Any expenditure outside of the stipulated use will not be accepted.
  • Fellows should notify CAS of any periods of travel or absence during their fellowship.
  • Presentation of research at CAS fellow’s colloquium at the end of fellowship.

Selection Criteria

A faculty review committee under direction of the CAS Oppenheimer Faculty Director will use the following criteria to identify final award recipients:

  • Fellows with strong PhD achievement and actively conducting research and teaching in one of the listed institutions.
  • Strength and quality of research proposal, project uniqueness, clear purpose, and detailed plan for execution of proposal.
  • Applicants ability to succeed in a research-based academic track.
  • Demonstration of initiative, social consciousness, leadership, and a sense of responsibility as well as personal motivations and experiences.
  • Contribute to and advance new knowledge to the field of study.
  • Mentors' recommendation and commitment to fellows’ advancement in the area of research.

How to Apply

Complete the application on Qualtrics and upload required documents as prompted. Applicants must register to access the application: Access the Registration here (or paste this link into your browser: https://harvard.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_6yuqELivP5h14ua)

Deadline for applications: 17 May 2021 at 11pm ET

For more information: https://africa.harvard.edu/african-studies-postdoctoral-fellowship-program