Monday, 13 June 2016

Master's Research Interns at HSD 2016

The HSD programme conducts social science and humanities research addressing the development of vulnerable individuals over the life course and across generations living in the context of communities and a transforming society. Our unique contribution is to focus on how the intersections of identity markers such as gender, race, class and age and broader social conditions (e.g. inequalities; diversity, social cohesion) impact human and social development. 

HSD currently employs a multi-disciplinary group of social scientists and humanities scholars in Pretoria, Durban, Sweetwaters and Cape Town. Our work focuses on the following key areas of work:

1.    Children in Adversity:  a focus on childhood vulnerabilities, including those made vulnerable by poverty, HIV and AIDS.
2.    Youth in the Global South:  a focus on young people, providing data on the status of youth and an evidence-base for positive youth development in the Global South
3.    Families and Reproductive Justice: focuses on work-family combinations, care and care-giving, reproductive justice, the role of men in families and intergenerational relationships.
4.    Society and Belonging: addresses the dynamics of individual and social change (including urbanisation, migration, climate change and technological change) as well as the role of communities and social movements in facilitating change and addressing inequalities.

HSD is looking to appoint four suitably qualified persons to take on the responsibilities of Master’s Intern in the Sweetwaters, Durban, Pretoria and Cape Town offices of the HSRC.

The Master’s Research Internship in the HSRC provides successful candidates with an opportunity to further develop their research expertise by working with subject experts and project specialists. The research internship experience is intensive and seeks mature individuals who are able to work independently as well as in a team. While appointees will be exposed to a wide variety of project-related research, they will be expected to complete their thesis within two years. Time is set aside for this purpose.

These four positions are offered on a 24 Months contract.

Master’s Research Intern: Durban X1 Reference: HSD MRI DBN 06/16
Master’s Research Intern: Pretoria X1 Reference: HSD MRI PTA 06/16
Master’s Research Intern: Cape Town X1 Reference: HSD MRI CPT 06/16
Master’s Research Intern: Sweetwaters X1 Reference: HSD MRI SWT 06/16
Key Responsibilities:
In addition to being registered at a recognised South African university and currently working on their degrees, research interns are required to participate in all aspects of the research process as they work with other staff on different research projects.

Among other duties, they will participate in the following activities under supervision:
•    Participation in the conceptualisation and execution of research projects;
•    Participation in the formulation of research questions and writing proposals;
•    Assisting with the submission of research proposals for ethical review;
•    Collection and analysis of data;
•    Writing up of research results, research reports and manuscripts for publication;
•    Presenting at conferences;
•    Management or supervision of research project activities.

Key Requirements:
•    Applicants must be in possession of a relevant Honours degree in the social and human sciences, or in epidemiology, demography and related disciplines;
•    Applicants must be registered for the appropriate higher degree either with a recognised South African or other university;
•    South African citizen or permanent resident.

Key Competencies and skills:
•    Computer literacy, including MS Office, Outlook and Excel and related applications in scientific software (e.g. SPSS, AtlasTi or similar);
•    Good planning and organisational skills, including working well under pressure;
•    Sound communication skills (verbal as well as report writing);
•    A sound conceptual grounding in their discipline and in research methods, including key theories;
•    Good interpersonal skills;
•    A valid and unendorsed driver’s license would be an advantage.

Preference will be given to:
•    Applicants who have completed their Master’s coursework;
•    Applicants with an interest in one of the priority research areas of the HSD Programme will be an advantage.


The HSRC offers attractive, market-related packages depending on qualifications and experience.

Applications: In your application, please include: your CV, a letter of motivation, and the details of three recent referees (with telephone, fax and e-mail contact details).  Research Trainees must include an example of recent academic work (not exceeding 8000 words); and a one-page outline of your Master’s thesis topic (or the abstract of the completed work).  Ensure that you indicate the reference number of the position for which you are applying.  The HSRC will only consider applications that comply with the above requirements.  Applicants may be required to undertake a written exercise or an oral presentation in the competencies required for the position.

Please submit your application to: The Head: Human Resources, HSRC, Private Bag X41, Pretoria 0001, or hand deliver to the HSRC Building, Room S944, 134 Pretorius Street, Pretoria. Alternatively applications may be e-mailed to Please indicate the reference number in the subject line, applications that do not adhere to this, will not be considered. For further information about the HSRC or the post please consult our website (  For enquiries, and not applications, you may also contact Dr Alastair van Heerden, (

The HSRC is committed to accelerating the improvement in the proportion of its senior managers and research leaders who are black, female or disabled.

Closing date: 24 June 2016.  We encourage applicants to submit prior to that date.  Applicants who have not been contacted within eight weeks should assume that their application has been unsuccessful. Only candidates who are interviewed will be advised of the outcome of the interview.

The HSRC reserves the right to not make an appointment


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