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Fellowships 2024: Call for Applications

The Megatrends Afrika project is awarding three fellowships to African researchers. Megatrends Afrika is a cooperation between the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP) in Berlin, the German Institute of Development and Sustainability (IDOS) in Bonn and the Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW). The project conducts policy-relevant interdis-ciplinary research on Africa and provides policy advice to decision-makers. Its three core re-search themes are i) actors of violence and the changing nature of conflict, ii) the effects of meg-atrends on democratization and autocratization, and iii) global power shifts and multipolarity.

The Fellowship

Fellows will conduct a research project independently or, if suitable, in collaboration with project team members or other IDOS, IfW and SWP colleagues - and contribute one paper to the project’s publication series. All fellows are expected to participate in project meetings, events and other relevant activities of their host institution during their stay.

Fellowships will be granted for a period of two to three months between 2 May and 30 November 2024, full-time. For the duration of the fellowship, fellows will reside in the city of their host institution, i.e., in Berlin (SWP), Bonn (IDOS) or Kiel (IfW). Fellows will receive a monthly grant of € 2,800 as well as an economy-class return trip between the fellow's place of residence and Germany. At IDOS, the honorarium will be calculated based on the IDOS fee schedule.

Fellows are selected and placed in line with the research agendas of the host institutes. Fellows who require a visa to enter Germany will be provided with a letter of support.

Your Profile

  • Preferably completed PhD in political science, economics, social sciences, geography, international relations, or relevant area studies;
  • Originating from an African country
  • Strong research and publication track record in areas of relevance to the Megatrends Afrika project
  • Experience in scientific policy advice is an advantage

Research Topics 2024

We are particularly interested in proposals pertaining to the following topics:

  • Conflicts and armed violence in the Sahel: Links between climate change, resource/ land use conflicts and armed violence;
  • Local perceptions of foreign intervention in conflict states, including remote warfare and hybrid warfare and their implications for state legitimacy;
  • Demographic change or gender: Effects of demographic change on political attitudes and participation, the role of women and gender orders in politics or social movements;
  • Democratization and autocratization: domestic and external factors of influence;
  • Africa’s international relations in a new world order, including South-South relations, engagement in multilateral or minilateral fora (e.g., the UN, G20, BRICS);
  • Dynamics of regional Integration in Africa and cooperation with external partners: including the AfCFTA;
  • The nexus between domestic politics and foreign policy

How to Apply

Applications must be submitted as a single PDF document and must contain a one-page letter of motivation, an academic CV including a list of academic publications, a sample of 2 recent publications, copies of relevant academic transcripts and/or diplomas (no translations needed), a written concept note containing the description of the applicant’s project. The concept note should not exceed 2,000 words and include a discussion of the project/research topic, its academic and policy relevance, feasibility and theoretical and methodological grounding. The scope and ambition of the project should be appropriate for a publication (a Megatrends policy brief or working paper) that will be finalized by the end of the fellowship.

The deadline for fellowship applications is 10 March 2024, 11:59 p.m. CET. Please send your application by email to Megatrends-Afrika@swp-berlin.org. Incomplete and/or late applications will not be considered.

Selection Process

Shortlisted candidates will be invited for an online interview. In choosing applicants, we will put particular emphasis on the following criteria:

  • Academic and professional merit based on the applicant’s publications and work experience;
  • Academic and policy relevance of the project;
  • Feasibility of the project during the period of the fellowship;
  • Candidates’ ability to communicate effectively and make complex ideas accessible to a broad audience.

Find more information about our project on this website. If you have any questions in relation to your application, please contact Julia Fath at megatrends-afrika@swp-berlin.org.

As part of the application process, we will store and process the data you send us and share it with members of the selection committee that will consist of employees of IDOS, IfW, and SWP. In the privacy policy declaration available here we would like to inform you comprehensively about the collection, processing and use of your personal data. If you do not agree with the processing of your data by Megatrends Afrika, you can object at any time by contacting Megatrends-Afrika@swp-berlin.org.