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Economist - Social Scientist (Africa)

The WorldFish Center
Location: Zomba, Malawi or Lusaka, Zambia
Last Date: January 31, 2011
Email: (Reference:

The WorldFish Center, located on the island of Penang, Malaysia, is a world-class scientific research organization. Our mission is to reduce poverty and hunger by improving fisheries and aquaculture.  We have offices in 8 countries and engage in collaborative research with more than 200 partners in more than 25 countries. The Center is a nonprofit organization and a member of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR). 

A unique opportunity has arisen for gifted individuals to contribute to the mission of the Center. 


The WorldFish Center is seeking an economist / agricultural economist or social scientist with skills and experience in field based research and analysis, comfortable working in rural Africa. The candidate should be committed to using research for development in a complex cooperative environment of research and development partners. WorldFish seeks diversity and gender balance in its staff. Women and citizens of developing countries are particularly urged to apply.

We are looking for a versatile economist or social scientist with comparable skills who enjoys field-based research and can combine that with higher-level quantitative and qualitative analysis of rural livelihoods, poverty, governance, climate change impacts and policy responses.

The overall purpose of the position is to provide senior social science support to research work by the Center and its partners in the Sub-Saharan Afica region. The position will be based in Zomba, Malawi or Lusaka, Zambia and will initially be focused on ensuring quality social science research in the context of collaborative multi-sectoral projects on climate change impacts in the Lake Chilwa Basin and on water governance in the context of agricultural water use in Malawi, Mozambique and Zambia. Beyond these projects, the position will also contribute to program development in the region. 

Key Responsibilities

·      Providing social science leadership in the implementation of collaborative projects on climate change impacts in the Lake Chilwa Basin and on water governance in the context of agricultural water use in Malawi, Mozambique and Zambia;

·      Overseeing design and implementation of research instruments and analysis of results in collaboration with scientists from WorldFish and partners in government, research institutions and civil society organizations;

·      Developing scientific publications, technical reports and other knowledge outputs from these projects;

·      As a member of a multi-disciplinary team of researchers, contribute to policy dialogue and broad dissemination of research results in the context of development processes in project countries;

·      Supervising and mentoring teams of junior researchers in WorldFish and partner institutions; and

·      Contributing social science expertise to the development of new WorldFish projects and programs in Southern Africa. 

Skills and Abilities

·      Proven record of scientific analysis and publications in international social science journals;

·      Sound knowledge of current approaches and methodologies of livelihoods, gender, poverty, institutional and governance analysis; and

·      Excellent written and spoken English language capability. 

Qualifications and Experiences

·      PhD degree in economics or a relevant social science discipline, such as anthropology, sociology, political science, agricultural economics or others;

·      At least 5 years experience of field-based social science research on issues of rural livelihoods, gender, poverty, agriculture or environmental management; and

·      Experience of working in multi-disciplinary teams in project contexts and under tight deadlines. 


The WorldFish Center offers a competitive remuneration package, a non-discriminatory policy and provides an innovative work environment. Interested applicants are invited to submit a comprehensive curriculum vitae that includes names and contacts (telephone, fax, and e-mail addresses) of three (3) professional referees who are familiar with the candidate's qualifications and work experience.


You are required to submit your application (with indication on the subject line “Application for the position of Economist – Social Science”) to the Human Resources Strategy and Services Unit at Initial screening of applications will begin on 31 January 2011 but position will remain open until filled. This is a global position based at WorldFish offices in Zomba, Malawi or Lusaka, Zambia. Only short-listed candidates will be notified. 

WorldFish is committed to an Equal Employment Opportunity employer and strives for staff diversity in gender and nationality.


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