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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. During a four-month fellowship, researchers will be based at the University of California, Berkeley during the Fall academic semester (approximately August 20 - December 20, 2017).

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/. Additionally, CEGA staff and PhD students will provide support during the semester and once the scholar returns home. The fellowship program will pay for room and board in Berkeley, health insurance, monthly stipend, visa fees, and roundtrip economy air travel for the selected Fellow. CEGA staff will provide mentorship not only throughout the semester, but also once the scholar returns home. Please note that the fellowship does NOT include financial provisions or support for any additional family members or spouses.

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 who return to their home institution, to hold trainings in impact evaluation, build institutional capacity, or to forge new linkages with government policymakers.

Applicants whose research proposals are related to women’s empowerment, small holder agriculture, digital credit or infectious diseases are especially encouraged to apply.

About EASST

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

FELLOWSHIP ACTIVITIES

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

Eligibility

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 PhD or Master’s degree (completed within the last 8 years) or be enrolled in a PhD 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) and econometrics;
  • 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.

Applicants interested in infectious diseases, women’s empowerment, agriculture, or digital credit will be given preference.


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 impact evaluation methodologies.

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. 

Research 

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 women’s empowerment, small holder agriculture, digital credit or infectious diseases are especially encouraged. 

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: http://tinyurl.com/Submittable-EASST-2017-VF

Note: If you are unable to access the online system, please email Kuranda Morgan, kmorgan@berkeley.edu, to request an application in WORD or RTF. 

Required Documents:

Please ensure that all supporting documentation is submitted in English.

6.  References (2 required):

  • One academic letter that describes the applicant’s research capacity. Please use the provided recommendation template. (Appendix 2)
  • Name, contact information, and brief description of the previous engagement of a staff at a government agency who can discuss the fellows’ past policy engagement (Appendix 3)

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

 

Estimated Timeline 

Thursday, 19 January 2017

Release of Request for Applications

Friday, 31 March 2017

Application deadline

Week of April 3 – 14,  2017

Application review

Week of April 17 - 21, 2017

Selected interviews

Week of April 24 - 28, 2017

Notification of selections

Friday, 5 May 2017

Deadline to accept


The deadline for submission is:

11:59 pm U.S. Pacific Time on Friday, 31 March 2017

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