HSRC: Research Assistant/Qualitative Interviewer (Sweetwaters, Pietermaritzburg)

Research Assistant/Qualitative Interviewer

Company Human Sciences Research Council

Reference # CCBR/RA/0221

Published 02/03/2021

Contract Type Contract

12 Months

Salary Market Related

Location Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa


In delivering ‘social science that makes a difference’, the Research Programmes of the Human Sciences Research Council initiate and undertake policy-oriented research projects and programmes from its offices in Cape Town, Durban, Pietermaritzburg and Pretoria. Its public-purpose mandate is set out in the Human Sciences Research Council Act of 2008.

The Centre for Community Based Research (CCBR) exists within the Division of Human and Social Capabilities (HSC). The mission of the CCBR is to understand, identify and improve community wellbeing by exploring, describing and addressing health, education, and quality of life through novel mixed-methods approaches that combines multidisciplinary capacities, and to serve as a hub for knowledge generation, capacity building and training.

Through engagement and advocacy for community-informed approaches, the CCBR is a champion for this work within the Division and across the HSRC. The CCBR currently have staff in both Durban and Pietermaritzburg with plans to grow activities and capacity beyond the borders of the Sweetwaters.

The CCBR is looking for a suitably qualified person to take on research assistance duties for multi-year projects implemented at the Sweetwaters office. The successful candidate will provide research assistance, data collection through fieldwork and project support to multi-year intervention research projects. They would be required to support cross project site activities, and may lead assigned project phases from time to time.

The RA/Qualitative Interviewer will work closely with the senior management team, cross project units, project team and site support staff to successfully implement their role. These positions are offered on a 13 month contract.

External Advert

Research Assistant/Qualitative Interviewer X 2

Office base: Sweetwaters, Pietermaritzburg

Reference: CCBR/RA/0221

Job Functions Research

Industries Research


•3 year qualification in the Social Sciences/Humanities or a relevant field at an accredited tertiary institution in South Africa;

•Be prepared to travel to undertake fieldwork;

•Be curious and enthusiastic about a research career that includes qualitative and quantitative data collection and analysis;

•Computer literacy including MS Office and appropriate software packages, including MS Excel, MS Access, SPSS or Stata or SAS; Atlas.ti/NVivo

•Sound communication skills (verbal as well as report writing);

•Good interpersonal skills and willingness to work in a structured environment;

•A sound grounding in research methods, qualitative or quantitative and growing conceptual ability;

•Be able to work independently as well as in a team;

•Be able to operate within very tight deadlines;

•Be fluent in English


Among other duties, the successful candidate will participate in the following activities under supervision:

•The conceptualisation and execution of research projects;

•The formulation of research questions and funding proposals;

•The submission of research proposals for ethical review;

•Collection and analysis of qualitative and quantitative data;

•Write up of research including conference presentations, research reports and manuscripts for publication; and

•Assist with administrative matters in the research environment.

Preference will be given to applicants with:

•Completed/near completion: Masters coursework requirements

•Fluency in written and spoken isiZulu

•Commitment to working as part of a multi-disciplinary research team

•Ability to work to strict deadlines

•Ability to problem solve, and to be well organised

•Ability to actively contribute to team performance and work independently

Applicants will be required to take a practical skills assessment test as part of the interview process.


The HSRC offers attractive, market-related packages depending on qualifications and experience.

Applications: In your application, please include: your CV, a letter of motivation, and the details of three recent referees (with telephone, fax and e-mail contact details). Research Trainees must include an example of recent academic work (not exceeding 8000 words); and a one-page outline of your Master’s thesis topic (or the abstract of the completed work). Ensure that you indicate the reference number of the position for which you are applying. The HSRC will only consider applications that comply with the above requirements. Applicants may be required to undertake a written exercise or an oral presentation in the competencies required for the position.

Please note the following:

•Ensure you use Google Chrome or Firefox from a computer or laptop, and not a cell phone

•Only your CV can be uploaded on the first page after you have registered/logged in.

•ALL OTHER DOCUMENTS can be uploaded on the “Document” tab on your profile

•Attachments must be less than 2 MB.

•Should you have any HR enquiries please send your query citing reference number to HREnquiries@hsrc.ac.za

•Should you experience problems applying online, please send your applications to recruitment@hsrc.ac.za. Clearly indicate the reference number in the subject line.

•For further information, not applications please e-mail hmtolo@hsrc.ac.za on

Details about the HSRC can be found at www.hsrc.ac.za

Only applications that comply with the listed above requirements will be considered.

The HSRC is committed to accelerating the improvement in the proportion of its senior managers and research leaders who are black, female or disabled.

Closing date: 14 March 2021. We encourage applicants to submit prior to that date. Applicants who have not been contacted within eight weeks should assume that their application has been unsuccessful. Only candidates who are interviewed will be advised of the outcome of the interview.

The HSRC reserves the right to not make an appointment


Job Closing Date 14/03/2021

Click HERE to apply

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