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About the Fellowship

The EASST Visiting Fellowship seeks to equip East African social scientists with the skills needed to carry out rigorous evaluations of economic development programs. Researchers will be based at the University of California, Berkeley for four months during the fall academic semester (approximately August 20th - December 20th 2018) or the spring academic semester (approximately January 16 – May 11th 2019).

Each Visiting Fellow will be paired with a faculty mentor affiliated with the Center for Effective Global Action (CEGA), a research network based in the United States. A list of CEGA faculty affiliates is available online at http://cega.berkeley.edu/faculty/. CEGA staff and Ph.D. students will provide additional mentorship during the fellowship and after the scholar returns home. The EASST program will cover the costs of room and board in Berkeley, health insurance, a monthly stipend, visa fees, and round-trip economy airfare for selected Fellows. Please note that the fellowship does NOT provide financial support for spouses or other family members.

Upon completing the fellowship, scholars are expected to return to a university or research institute in East Africa and assume a leading role in the global effort to use rigorous evaluation and evidence for economic development. Small grants of up to $10,000 will be provided to fellows upon their successful completion of the program and arrival back in their home country for the purpose of conducting impact evaluation trainings, building institutional capacity, and forging new linkages with policymakers.


Launched in 2009, The East Africa Social Science Translation (EASST) Collaborative is a multi-institution research network with a mission to promote rigorous evaluation of social and economic development programs in East Africa. EASST builds regional leadership in evaluation research by offering competitive fellowships and grants to junior social scientists at East African research institutions. EASST also facilitates collaboration between U.S. and East African researchers. Through these and other activities, EASST seeks to empower the “next generation” of social scientists to measure the impacts of development interventions, and then translate research findings into better public policies.

The network is administered by the Center for Effective Global Action (CEGA) at UC Berkeley. Learn more about EASST at: http://www.easst-collaborative.org


During the fellowship period, visiting researchers will:

  • Participate in seminars and conferences on research in social and economic development;
  • Present their own work during seminars and workshops;
  • Audit courses, including rigorous doctoral-level seminars in impact evaluation;
  • Carry out an independent research project under the mentorship of faculty members. Projects can use existing data for retrospective analysis or set-up a study design for future data collection;
  • Meet and collaborate with faculty or students in multiple academic departments;
  • Design impact evaluation curricula that will be taught at an East African institution;
  • Participate in policy dissemination by contributing to policy briefs, attending meetings with policymakers and stakeholders, and presenting at events; and
  • Work with the World Bank and other partners to identify opportunities for future research.


Eligible candidates for all EASST programs must:

  • Be a resident of an East African country participating in EASST (i.e. Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, or Uganda);
  • Have a Ph.D. (completed within the last 8 years) or be enrolled in a Ph.D. program in economics, statistics, epidemiology/public health, or another social science discipline;
  • Hold a staff position at a research institution, university or other organization in East Africa, preferably one that supports policy-relevant, quantitative social science research;
  • Have participated in or have familiarity with impact evaluation research (either randomized or quasi-experimental studies);
  • Have participated in field-based data collection and rigorous empirical research/analysis;
  • Be computer literate, familiar with software programs such as STATA or R, fluent in English, and a strong public speaker;
  • Plan to return to a research institute in East Africa for at least 1 year after the fellowship; and
  • Demonstrate a commitment to building the capacity of African research institutions/universities.

Selection Criteria

Successful candidates must:

  • Demonstrate strong quantitative skills, with past coursework in economics or statistics.
  • Demonstrate an interest in rigorous program evaluation, policy analysis, and micro-level field data collection.
  • Demonstrate a commitment to engaging policy-makers and disseminating research findings.
  • Submit a clear and innovative research proposal to evaluate a specific public policy or program, using randomized controlled trial or quasi-experimental methodologies.
*We will give preference to fellows interested in infectious diseases, agriculture, and digital financial inclusion.

Female applicants are strongly encouraged to apply. Preference will be given to fellows who have been enrolled in a doctoral program in a relevant field of study. 


Applicants must submit a research proposal of no more than 2 pages along with their fellowship application. Your research proposal should lay the groundwork for a full research project. However, in contrast to a complete grant application—which requires strong partnership with implementing organizations, detailed outcome measures, and a field research plan—the design idea can be at earlier stages of development. Proposed designs should be quantitative in nature or should use mixed methods (i.e., a mix of quantitative and qualitative data collection). While the evaluation questions should be very clear, the 2-page proposal statement is not expected to fully elaborate on the evaluation’s implementation.

Applicants whose research proposals are related to infectious diseases, agriculture, and digital financial inclusion are especially encouraged to apply. 

The design statement must not exceed two pages and must include the following seven sections (do not leave any section blank):  

  • Problem statement 
  • Contribution to learning
  • Description of program(s)
  • Target population
  • Evaluation design
  • Policy Translation
  • Other funding sources

Application Instructions

Carefully review the Application Guidelines in this document. An online system is used to submit applications. Please submit completed versions of all required documents by the submission deadline.  No information and/or documents will be accepted after the closing date. All materials should be submitted using the online platform “Submittable” at

Note: If you are unable to access the online system, please email Chelsea Downs, cdowns@berkeley.edu, to request an application in WORD or PDF.

Required Documents:

Please ensure that all supporting documentation is submitted in English.

1. Personal Statement (1 page): Why are you interested in being an EASST fellow, and what do you hope to accomplish during the semester and beyond?

2. Curriculum Vitae/Resume

3.Transcript of any coursework completed within at least the last 5 years (i.e. your scores or grades from university courses). Scanned copy is acceptable.

4. Research Proposal: Not to exceed 2 pages. Refer to the Design Statement Example.

5. Evidence of Leave Approval from the applicant’s supervisor or department chair demonstrating support and certifying that, if the applicant is selected, he/she will be able to take a 4-month leave of absence. 

6. Letters of Recommendation (2 required)

a) One letter from a government agency or policymaker indicating the fellows past policy engagement or engagement potential. Please use the provided recommendation template.

b) One academic letter that describes the applicant’s research capacity. Please use the provided recommendation template.

7. OPTIONAL: You may attach one working paper or publication.

Estimated Timeline

Monday, 22 January 2018

Release of Request for Applications

Friday, 30 March 2018

Application deadline

Week of April 2 – 13, 2018

Application review

Week of April 16- 20, 2018

Selected interviews

Week of April 23 - 27, 2018

Notification of selections

Friday, 4 May 2018

Deadline to accept

deadline for submission is:

11:59 pm U.S. Pacific Time on Friday, 30 March 2018