PHD Research Internship Opportunity 2017

Posted on :

17 Jul, 2017

Category :

Internships in South Africa

RIA’s vision is to contribute to a prosperous, healthy and just society that uses research evidence to improve the quality of life of a people who are all well informed, actively engaged and passionate about civic matters/public policy.

RIA is a cross cutting research programme that seeks to extend and enhance the use and impact of scientific research and manage the HSRC’s relationships, reputation and brand. We add value to the core business of the HSRC which is to conduct basic and applied research, inform public debate, and provide evidence-based policy advice. As knowledge brokers – researchers and practitioners– we work at the nexus of policy development, programme implementation and social action.

RIA consists of the following sections: Science Communication & Gender, Evaluation & Learning, Impact Assessment, HSRC Press, and Corporate Communications & Stakeholder Relations.

As part of the HSRC’s Learning and Development activities, RIA currently has nine MA and PhD research interns. As part of developing the required capacity to achieve its mission, RIA wishes to appoint a suitable candidate to the following position:

(1 Posts) 

Cape Town or Pretoria – Three year contract 

For this PhD research internship position we are seeking applicants with interests in one or more of the following areas – quantitative social science analytical techniques, secondary data analysis, social media analytics, and critical discourse analysis – who will be attached to either the Evaluation & Learning, Impact Assessment or Science Communication & Gender sections. The internshipexperience is intensive and is suited for self-driven emerging scholars who are able to work as part of larger teams. The appointed intern will be provided with pertinent training and gain research experience whilst completing their PhD degree studies.

Key Responsibilities: 

In addition to completing their degrees, research interns are required to participate in all aspects of the research process as they work on research projects. Among other duties, they will participate in the following activities under supervision:

• The conceptualisation of projects;
• The formulation of research questions and writing of funding proposals;
• The submission of research proposals for ethical review;
• Implementation of research projects and policy dialogues;
• Collection and analysis of data;
• Write-up of research findings including research reports, conference presentations, policy briefs, and manuscripts for journal publication;
• Assist with project management and administration.

Key Requirements: 

• Have graduated with a Master’s degree and be eligible to register or have recently registered for a PhD in the Social Sciences/Humanities or a relevant field in a tertiary institution in South Africa;
• Have an interest in practices and research that seeks to enhance the use and impact of scientific research;
• A proven research interest aligned to the work of the Evaluation & Learning, Impact Assessment or Science Communication & Gender sections.
• Computer literacy including MS Office and appropriate software packages;
• Good planning and organisational skills, including the ability to working well under pressure;
• Good communication skills (verbal as well as report writing);
• A sound conceptual grounding in a discipline and in quantitative or qualitative research methods;
• Applicants must be South African citizens or citizens of another African country.


In your application, please include:

(1) a one page letter of motivation indicating your suitability for the position; (2) your CV, that indicates you nationality, citizenship or residency status, and expected date of submission of your dissertation; (3) published article in an academic journal or a writing sample, as well as a one-page outline of your PhD thesis; and (4) the details of three recent referees with telephone, fax or e-mail contact details.

Please indicate the relevant reference number that appears in this advertThe HSRC will only consider applications that include the above requirements. Applicants will be required to undertake a written exercise in the competencies required for the position. The HSRC is committed to accelerating the proportion of its researchers who are black, female or disabled.

Please submit your application on-line at or to The Head: Human Resources, HSRC, Private Bag X41, Pretoria 0001, or hand deliver to the HSRC Building, Room S944, 134 Pretorius Street, Pretoria. If you experience problems applying online, please send your applications to [email protected].

For further information please consult the HSRC website or contact Dr Temba Masilela [email protected] (Pretoria). Details of the HSRC can be found on the website( ).

Closing date : 27 July 2015. We encourage applicants to submit before that date.

If you do not receive any response from us within eight weeks, please accept that your application was unsuccessful. Only candidates who are interviewed will be advised of the outcome of their application.

THE HSRC reserves the right to not make an appointment.


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