Senior Social Scientist /Share Research Fellow at Mwanza Intervention Trials Unit (MITU)


Source Guardian ,25th Nov 2016

Senior Social Scientist - Share Research Fellowship
We have an exciting and challenging vacancy for a Senior Social Scientist to join the Mwanza Intervention Trials Unit.
The successful applicant will have a postgraduate qualification in either sociology, anthropology or other relevant field and considerable experience in behavioral research. The position will be open as from January 2017 and is initially available for a period of two years (subject to satisfactory performance), with a prospect for extension thereafter depending on funding availability. The appointment will be made on MITU's attractive salary scale for senior scientists, subject to qualifications and experience.
The primary responsibility of the Senior Social Scientist will be to build and lead a portfolio of qualitative research in the context of a broad range of health intervention trials that MITU is currently running or will launch in the near future. One focus of the work will be on interventions to improve water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) related behaviours; other research will focus on service provision and uptake for a variety of infectious (including HIV infection) and' non-communicable diseases (NCDs), and research related to the health of adolescents and young adults.
MITU is a research-collaboration of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and the National Institute for Medical Research (NIMR), Mwanza Centre. It is recognised as one of the leading international centres for research on health interventions. The mission of MITU is to contribute to improving health through the development and evaluation of interventions against HIV and other health problems by conducting research, including clinical trials, to the highest international standards; to enhance the capacity to carry out such research in Tanzania and the East African region; and to contribute to the translation research findings into health policy in partnership with other stakeholders.
During the past 25 years, the collaboration has carried out ground-breaking studies on the epidemiology and control of HIV and other sexual health problems, with a particular focus on randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of preventive interventions, and has built a reputation as one of the leading centres worldwide for HIV prevention research. Among a wide range of studies, some of the most significant contributions have included a trial demonstrating that improved treatment services for STI reduced HIV incidence in the general adult population by 40%; studies of the adverse effects of maternal syphilis on birth outcomes and the effectiveness of screening and treatment in averting these effects; the first RCT to measure the effects of an adolescent sexual health intervention on HIV, other STIs and pregnancy and the first RCT to measure the impact of long-term suppression of genital herpes on HIV acquisition and genital shedding. MITU has conducted trials on the introduction of an HPV vaccine. Special expertise has been developed in the use of cluster randomized trials to measure the population-level effects of health interventions. In recent years, MITU has broadened its research to encompass work on NCDs and water and sanitation, with a focus on adolescents and young adults.
More information MITU is available on its web site at www

The London School Of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
LSHTM is an international centre of excellence in public health and tropical medicine. It is one of Europe's leading postgraduate medical institutions and is Britain's national school of public health. Both European and developing country concerns me covered by the School's expertise in epidemiology, preventive medicine, and disease control. The School provides a national and international focus for collaboration in teaching and research where clinical, population, laboratory and social sciences are integrated to address health needs.
More information on the School is available on its web site at

The National Institute for medical research (NIMR); Mwanza Center

NIMR's Mwanza Research Centre is one of the major research institutions in Tanzania. For many years, the Centre has been involved in research on soil transmitted helminthiasis. Today its research portfolio ranges from research on schistosomiasis and intestinal helminth infections to research on the control of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections, malaria, tuberculosis and NCDs. The current research projects are categorized into four programmes, namely (i) Sexual and Reproductive Health; (ii) Parasitic Diseases; (iii) Clinical Research; and (iv) Health Systems and Policy. The Centre is led by Dr John Changalucha and engages in numerous international collaboration with universities and research institutions in Africa and in industrialized countries.
More information on NIMR is available on its web site at http:/
The Share Research Programme
Water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) are fundamental to public health. The LSHTM Environmental Health Group (EHG) is the focus of the School's work on WASH and leads the Sanitation and Hygiene Applied Research for Equity (SHARE) consortium. This consortium is funded by the UK Department for International Development to bring together leading research and operational organisations to generate rigorous and relevant research for use in the field of sanitation and hygiene. SHARE works in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia. The Consortium contributes to achieving universal access to effective, sustainable and equitable sanitation and hygiene by generating evidence to improve policy and practice. The core elements of SHARE are Research, Capacity Development and Research into Use.
1, Research: we conduct research across a range of sanitation and hygiene-related themes to address national sector needs in the countries which we work.
2. Capacity Development: we create varied opportunities for the development of young investigators, work with national universities to train future
This vacancy is a senior fellowship position that has been created as part of SHARE's capacity development efforts. The Senior Social Scientist / Research Fellow will be based full-time in Mwanza. S/he will develop MITU's social science research portfolio both as a self-standing discipline and as a key component in the conduct of randomised controlled trials of health interventions. The post holder will be a senior member of MITU's research management team. S/he will report to Dr Saidi Kapiga the Scientific Director of MITU and will collaborate closely with the principal investigators of intervention trials. In the context of WASH related research. S/he will coordinate work with Dr Safari Kinunghi (NIMR) and Prof Sandy Cairncross (LSHTM).

Job Description

Position: Senior Social Scientist / SHARE Research Fellow

The Senior Social Scientist will be a member of the MITU research leadership team and will be based full-time in Mwanza. Tanzania. The post holder will also be part of NIMR. Mwanza center’s wider scientific community. The position will imply regular participation in field work within the Lake Zone of Tanzania and may require occasional work related travel to Dar es Salaam other regions of Tanzania and neighboring countries.

• To lead social science research at MITU

Main Duties
Specific responsibilities will be to:

1. Develop MITU's social science research portfolio.
2. Oversee the social science research components of MITU's intervention trials. in particular studies related to SHARE and WASH.
3. Conduct behavioural studies on MITU/SHARE's planned WASH trial at primary schools in Kagera Region in collaboration with regional officials of the
Ministries of Health and Social Welfare and Education and Vocational Training. Contribute to the interpretation of quantitative research outcomes.
4. Manage a team of social science field workers supervise field work and transcription and translation of research data.
5. Support the work of quantitative survey teams.
6. Lead the development and translation of qualitative tools for the various study activities.
7. Lead data processing analysis and write-up of qualitative and mixed methods research in collaboration with principal investigators of research trials.
8. Prepare scientific reports and publications and present research results at national and international meetings and conferences.
9. Manage project budgets for qualitative research monitor expenditures and contribute to financial reports. Collaborate with trial Pjs in setting and reviewing trial specific budgets.
10. Build the capacity of junior project staff to undertake high quality research.
11. Collaborate with MITU staff and staff from MITU partner organisations.
12. Recommend improvements to the day-ta-day running of the MITU office.
13. Promote MITU its core values and services and play a positive role in the delivery of its day-to-day operations and strategic goals.
14. Play an active part in promoting the scientific life at the NIMR Mwanza campus.
15. Undertake other tasks as may reasonably be expected from senior MITU staff.
Essential and desirable qualifications and skills for this post are as follows.

• A postgraduate qualification in sociology. anthropology or other social science discipline
• At least 6 years of working experience as a social scientist, with at least 3 years in a managing position.
• At least 6 relevant publications as first or senior author in internationally recognized peer reviewed journals.
• Demonstrable experience of conducting behavioral research in East Africa.
• Demonstrable experience in leading grant applications and obtaining research funds.
• Demonstrable ability in analysing and writing-up qualitative data.
• Demonstrable ability to work to strict deadlines without close supervision and direct own work in an efficient and productive manner.
• Managerial and organisational skills.
• Commitment to working as part of a multidisciplinary research team.
• Commitment to work in a multicultural environment.
• A PhD degree in social science or related discipline.
• Experience in the field of behavioral research on water sanitation and hygiene.
• Experience in conducting mixed methods research (qualitative and quantitative studies).
• Familiarity with the development and evaluation of behavioral interventions.
• Interest and/or experience in community-based interventions and participatory research

Application Instructions
Send applications through 
• Letter of application with details of how you meet the essential and desirable criteria and your reasons for wanting to join MITU. 
• Please include a daytime mobile telephone number and e-mail contact details. 
• Curriculum vitae (CV) including names and addresses of three referees [two must be from your most recent employing institution). 
• Copies of all relevant certificates and memberships and qualifications.

Avoid scams : NEVER pay to have your CV / Application pushed forward. Any job vacancy requesting payment for any reason is a SCAM.


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