2023 West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI) Research Fellowship

Deadline: April 21, 2023.

The West Africa Civil Society Institute (WACSI) was created to reinforce the institutional, operational and knowledge capacities of civil society in the region as well as enhance knowledge on civil society in the region. WACSI serves as a resource hub for training, research and documentation, experience sharing, and policy dialogue for organised civil society in West Africa.  

The Institute contributes to identifying and honing the skills of young researchers through a research fellowship programme. The goal of the research fellowship is to offer young and passionate researchers a wide range of opportunities to develop their research skills, while also contributing to the work of the Institute. Fellows will engage in working with experienced professionals in exploring key issues, trends, and challenges that are affecting the civil society environment. The fellowship enables fellows to gain valuable experience working in the civil society sector, building their professional networks, and developing skills that will be useful throughout their professional lives. They will have a better understanding of the needs and concerns of communities and contribute to developing effective strategies and policies that address these issues. Fellows will also contribute to the collation and documentation of best practices and models that can be replicated to foster development within the region. 


  • The fellowship is open to all young researchers from West Africa. Other young researchers who are not from the region but are interested in understanding and documenting civil society praxis in West Africa can be considered. 
  • Candidates interested in working on topical issues related to civil society are highly encouraged to apply. The Institute is keen on having candidates interested on topics related to local philanthropy, localisation agenda, decolonisation of aid, capacity development for civil society in West Africa. 
  • Recent master’s or PhD students and/or graduates who completed their master’s or PhD studies within the last two years. 
  • Applicants must be able to demonstrate strong analytical skills and the ability to perform independent research. 
  • Interested applicants should be able and ready to cover all costs related to the fellowship. 
  • Applicants must be able to communicate fluently either in English and/or French. French speaking candidates are highly encouraged to apply. 


  • Active 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. 
  • Fellows will be assigned to mentors who will guide them throughout the fellowship. 
  • The findings from the research and the overall experience of the fellows will be used to promote good practices in West Africa. 
  • Research fellows will receive monthly stipends and a research allowance from the Institute. During the research fellowship, candidates can get a wealth of opportunities and it provides students with the skills and knowledge to better plan for or advance their future careers. 
  • A certificate of completion will be provided upon satisfactory completion of all tasks and submission of all agreed deliverables. 
  • At least one WACSeries publication. 
  • Official recommendation from WACSI. 
  • Free access to WACSI’s civil society resource centre. 


Interested candidates should submit the following: 

  • A motivation letter stating their duration and theme of interest 
  • A curriculum vitae 
  • A synopsis of not more than one page on the specific theme of interest you would be working on during your fellowship 
  • Sample of an authored article or paper. Provide evidence of any published works if available. 


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