The goal of the research fellowship is to offer young researchers
with the dire opportunities to document indigenous practices on civil
society sustainability, women and youth leadership, technology for
development and enabling environment for civil society in West Africa.
This will be done by creating spaces for interaction between relevant
stakeholders, including decision-makers, development practitioners, CSO
leaders and their constituents.


Specific objectives of the research fellowship are to: 

  • Identify
    and nurture early career academics who have demonstrated leadership
    potential and/or an interest in the development sector in West Africa;
  • Support
    fellows to apply the acquired skills to conduct research that is
    relevant to the development of their careers and increase their impact
    on the community;
  • Increase indigenous knowledge production on civil society issues that will better inform development agenda and planning;
  • Build
    a community of practice (CoP) spanning across disciplinary boundaries,
    with academia, civil society actors and other stakeholders in West
    Africa to exchange ideas, opportunities and solution to advance the
    development agenda in the region. 


the end of the programme, fellows are expected to have hands-on
knowledge and contextual evidence on civic leadership and governance in
West Africa produced by young research fellows. The results of the
various research projects will be disseminated to relevant stakeholders
in the region and regularly discussed at the policy roundtables as a
tool for action. The fellowship would contribute to strengthen thought
leadership in the civil society sector in West Africa. 


participation in this fellowship offers aspiring academicians or
fellows with a keen interest in civil society access to a wide range of
benefits to help successfully conduct their research or engage in a
knowledge documentation project. The findings from the research and the
general experience of the fellows will be used to promote good practices
in West Africa. They will provide the necessary data and information as
evidence for informed policymaking in the region. 

During the
research fellowship, candidates can get a wealth of opportunities and it
gives students skills and knowledge to better plan for or advance their
future careers. 

Fellows will also have other opportunities and benefits such as:

  • A certificate of completion;
  • At least one WACSeries publication;
  • Official recommendation from WACSI;
  • Free access to WACSI’s rich civil society resource centre;
  • Improved English-language skills (for French speaking participants);
  • Become
    a member of a regional network of research fellows in the non-profit
    sector; • A creative and stimulating professional environment for the
  • Intercultural working experience with professionals from different West African countries;
  • Networking events and building of strong relationships with seasoned development partners;
  • Visibility of the fellow as his/her work will be disseminated to development actors and partners in West Africa and beyond;
  • Cross-disciplinary
    exposure and experience in knowledge management, capacity development,
    policy advocacy and influencing, monitoring, evaluation and learning
    from the work of WACSI’s respective Units. 


  • If you wish to be considered for the fellowship, apply by submitting the following:
  • An
    application letter clearly stating your career, academic and research
    goals as well as the period you will like to start the internship.
    Candidates are encouraged to specify their preferred start dates if
    known. Candidates must specify their research interests in the
    application letter;
  • One article (published or unpublished); and
  • A curriculum vitae.

applications should be sent to WACSI: [email protected] org and
[email protected] WACSI’s Knowledge Management Unit will provide
close supervision to the research fellows throughout the fellowship

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