Fellowships and Grants > African Peacebuilding Network

African Peacebuilding Network Residential Postdoctoral Fellowships

Supporting independent African research and its integration into regional and global policy communities

Not currently accepting applications.

Request for Proposals for the APN Residential Postdoctoral Fellowship Program

The African Peacebuilding Network (APN) of the Social Science Research Council (SSRC) invites residential postdoctoral fellowship applications from African academics and researchers who work on conflict and peacebuilding and are based in universities in Africa.

About the African Peacebuilding Network

The APN promotes independent African research and analysis on peacebuilding in or near countries and regions affected by violent conflict on the continent. The program also opens the door to the emergence of a critical mass of Africa-based expertise, including researchers, analysts, and practitioners who will play an important role in the shaping of an Africa-centered peacebuilding agenda.

About the APN Residential Postdoctoral Fellowship Program

The residential postdoctoral fellowship is a new initiative and key component of the APN. It is directed toward African PhDs based in African universities who are in the early postdoctoral phase of their scholarly careers. Selected fellows will produce research-based knowledge that is relevant to, and has a significant impact on, peacebuilding policy and practice on the continent. Specfically, the fellowship program aims to

  • encourage young academics to expand their research beyond their PhD;
  • deepen the engagement of early-career academics with scholarly and policy discussions on peacebuilding, both in Africa and other parts of the world; and
  • further develop and apply academics’ capacity for independent research that is relevant to a range of disciplines and broader networks within and outside of Africa.

In addition, fellows are expected to relate their work to policy debates on African peacebuilding. Fellows will present their findings to scholarly and policy forums/roundtables in Africa and the United States, with the ultimate goal of publication in high-quality peer-reviewed outlets. For its part, the APN will work toward inserting the evidence-based knowledge that this group produces into regional and global debates and policies focusing on peacebuilding.

Support will enable fellows to complete an ongoing research project on issues such as the following:

  • Political economy of conflict and peacebuilding
  • Conflict prevention and early warning systems
  • Emerging transnational threats to peace
  • African approaches to conflict management and peacebuilding
  • Local leadership and community-based peacebuilding
  • African Union Agenda 2063
  • Africa’s peace and security architecture (APSA)
  • The justice versus peace conundrum in post-conflict transitions
  • Insecurities and urban spaces
  • Corruption, democratic governance, and peace
  • UN-AU partnerships and peacebuilding
  • Impact of global and regional interventions on local peacebuilding in conflict-affected countries and subregions
  • Gender gaps in peacebuilding processes

While projects on any part of the African continent may be supported, the APN is particularly interested in work on those places that have received limited scholarly or policy attention.

Fellowships are awarded on a competitive, peer-reviewed basis and are intended to support three months of residency in Africa and the United States, from September through December 2014. Two months will be spent at a university or research center in Africa located outside the fellow’s home country, and the third month will be spent at a policy or practitioner institution in the United States. Fellows will also have the opportunity to attend the APN writing workshop at the African Leadership Centre (ALC) based in Nairobi, and present their research to scholarly and practice communities in their host country as well as the United States. Up to four individual grants of a maximum of $20,000 will be awarded.

Proposals should clearly describe the objectives and significance of the applicant’s project, indicating the stage of research and how it can be completed within three months. It is important that the applicant demonstrate how support from the fellowship will add value to the overall project. Applicants should also discuss the likely relevance of their research to existing knowledge on peacebuilding practice and policy. We encourage the inclusion of a brief budget outline (not detailed), to fit appropriately within the page limit required.


Applicants must be African citizens currently residing in an African country. Researchers based in conflict-affected African countries or those recently emerging from conflict are especially encouraged to apply.

Applicants must hold a faculty or research position at an African university and have completed their PhD within seven years of the application deadline.

Application Process

You are required to submit the following items to be considered for an APN Postdoctoral Fellowship: 

1) A completed application form
2) A completed Research Proposal
3) Bibliography
4) Two Reference Letters
5) Language evaluation(s) (if required)

The APN strongly prefers that applications be uploaded through our online portal. Alternatively, completed applications can be e-mailed to apn@ssrc.org with the inclusion of a CV, or delivered by post or courier service to the following address:

APN Postdoctoral Fellowships
Social Science Research Council
1 Pierrepont Plaza, 15th floor
Brooklyn, NY 11201

Deadline for Applications

Applications are due by midnight (EST), February 7, 2014.

If you have questions, please contact APN program staff by telephone at (+1) 212-377-2700 or by e-mail at apn@ssrc.org.

APN Postdoctoral Fellowship Frequently Asked Questions

Program Director
Cyril Obi