Understanding Violent Conflict Internship


The Social Science Research Council is seeking an intern for its new Understanding Violent Conflict Initiative.


The Social Science Research Council (SSRC) is an independent, international, nonprofit organization devoted to the advancement of interdisciplinary research in the social sciences through a wide variety of workshops and conferences, fellowships and grants, summer training institutes, scholarly exchanges, research, and publications.

The SSRC is interested in hosting an intern at the SSRC’s new Understanding Violent Conflict (UVC) Initiative. The UVC, a new SSRC initiative being launched in spring/summer 2017, aims to advance academic knowledge in conflict and development studies whilst also providing operationally relevant evidence and policy-oriented research outputs. This initiative, in partnership with institutions in Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, will deliver experience-based findings from hard-to-access research sites and conflict perspectives that are often hidden from the view of international development practitioners. Research conducted on political economies, displacement, armed groups, transitional justice, and security sector reform in Central Africa will involve national researchers and local beneficiaries at each stage of the research process. In addition, this new initiative will further innovate and refine methods of field research in conflict-affected settings and develop a major international fellowship program on conflict research.

The intern will be assigned to work on various aspects of the activities noted above, and will also assist in the final phases of some special projects currently in the SSRC’s Conflict Prevention and Peace Forum program, as these get closed out or get folded into the new initiative. These include the DRC Affinity Group, the Justice and Security Research Programme, and the China-Africa Knowledge Project.

This internship will start on June 1, 2017, and will last until August 31, 2017. Applicants should be prepared to spend at least two days per week in the SSRC office.


  • BA or MA (achieved or in progress).
  • Strong computer and social networking skills (Twitter); familiarity with database, web, and blog applications preferred (CRM and/or WordPress platforms).
  • Familiarity with and interest in sub-Saharan Africa (history, politics, peace and security issues, culture) along with previous work or research experience on the Central African region.
  • French language skills preferred.
  • Excellent research, writing, and editing skills.
  • Attention to detail and high degree of professionalism.
  • Team player with demonstrated ability to take initiative, work independently, and respond flexibly to changing demands.
  • Excellent interpersonal and organizational skills.


The primary responsibilities of the intern will be to provide overall support to the UVC Director and, as needed, the Program Manager. Primary responsibilities will include:

  • Updating/drafting website content and maintaining social media accounts.
  • Maintaining research files and records.
  • Assisting with the processing of program expenditures and consultancy payments.
  • Assisting in the development of a new conflict research fellowship program.
  • Assisting with the preparation of expert brainstorming sessions for the UN on the Horn of Africa, DRC, and CAR (this could include travel, drafting background notes on the histories of conflicts, analyzing and compiling media round-ups, identifying experts, and assisting with meeting logistics).
  • Conducting library, archival, online, and other research support tasks for related projects (papers, books, presentations, blogs, etc.).
  • Attending and taking notes at conferences and policy seminars in the New York region.
  • Other duties and additional responsibilities and projects as directed.

Terms, Salary and Benefits


Application Information

Please send cover letter, resume and a brief work- or research-related writing sample in PDF format to applications@ssrc.org with “UVC Intern” in the subject line of the e-mail. Applications will be accepted through May 15, 2017.