Application Deadline expired: Researcher Science Futures, discourses on African rural development

Application Deadline expired

The German Institute of Development and Sustainability (IDOS) is one of the world’s leading research institutions and think tanks for global sustainable development. It contributes, through research, policy advice and training, to finding answers to global questions affecting our future.


IDOS Research Programme “Transformation of Economic and Social Systems“ is looking for a


Researcher (f/m/diverse) - Position No. 2023-B-03

Part time 65% up to 25,35 hours/week,

German public sector tariff, EG13 TVöD Bund

34.000 – 49.800 Euro gross


the B05 project within the CRC, “Science Futures: Between ‘intensification’ and ’conservation’ discourses on African rural development”. The position may be filled as soon as possible and is limited until 31 December 2025.


Through research, policy advice and training, it contributes to finding answers to global questions affecting our future. In order to do so, it has joined the Collaborative Research Center CRC-TRR 228 "Future Rural Africa: Future-making and social-ecological transformation". The CRC brings together expertise from the Universities of Bonn and Cologne, IDOS and the Bonn International Center for Conflict Studies (BICC) to study newly emerging issues of social-ecological transformation and future-making in Africa.


The research is part of the wider project “Science Futures”, which seeks to unpack the complex ways in which science, as well as knowledge(s), shape the futures of rural Africa, focusing on development corridors. This includes the analysis of national and transregionally linked science systems, their role in future-oriented development discourses and policy-making, as well as the political ecologies and economies of corridor implementation.


This research draws on the political ecology-informed insight that social and political power affect the way natural resources are accessed, utilised and controlled; and that these processes are not only material, but also have an epistemological dimension. This research seeks to trace how different knowledge(s) shape development corridors, and are constructed, communicated, legitimated through discourse.


This work focuses on two development corridors: Tanzania’s Southern Agricultural Growth Corridor (SAGCOT) and Kenya’s Lamu Port–South Sudan–Ethiopia Transport (LAPPSET); it focuses on how these development corridors gained salience, and aims to trace how discourses change as corridors are implemented, negotiated and translated locally, as well as through conflict. Methods include multi-sited ethnographic research, as well as scientometric, media and discourse analysis.


The researcher is responsible for the following tasks, among others:

  • Conducting extended empirical field research in Tanzania and Kenya;
  • Publishing at least 3 papers in scientific journals;
  • Cooperating closely, as a project member of ‘Science Futures’ and the CRC, with the other researchers from Africa, Germany and beyond and contribute to the successful implementation of the CRC as a whole;
  • Contributing to ongoing empirical and conceptual discussions and work processes in the research programme ‘Transformation of Economic and Social Systems’ at IDOS.
  • Write or assist in writing policy-oriented papers in cooperation with IDOS or CRC members.



Requirements and qualifications:

  • Master and PhD degree in a relevant field of the social sciences (e.g. Human Geography, Sociology, Anthropology, Area Studies, Science & Technology Studies);
  • Good knowledge of quantitative and qualitative methods;
  • Empirical, qualitative, ethnographic or quantitative field research experience in Sub-Sahara Africa, empirical experiences and networks in Tanzania and Kenya are assets;
  • Effective interpersonal and intercultural communication skills including ability to work in a team;
  • Ability and willingness to travel independently for extended periods of time to countries with tropical climate (Tropentauglichkeit);
  • Excellent command of written and spoken English; command of German is an asset; 
  • Proven ability to publish in scientific journals; having written such articles on knowledge issues related to corridors or other land governance related issues will be a key asset.


We offer:

  • Flexible working hours with a weekly working time of 25,35 hours (65%)
  • Possibility of mobile working (“Homeoffice” up to 60% of the weekly working time)
  • Possibility to use a subsidised Deutschland-Job-Ticket for only €23.28/month and good access to public transportation;
  • Special annual payment in accordance with TVöD Bund;
  • Up to 30 days annual vacation plus 6 days company vacation
  • Trainings for further professional development;
  • Company pension scheme with the VBLU;
  • Many more social and monetary benefits


IDOS offers an inspiring, family-friendly working environment at the interface of research and policy advice, with ample opportunities to engage in international discussions, political processes and scientific debates.


In the case of equal qualification, physically challenged persons will be given preference. We want to promote the diversity of our employees and would like applications from women, men and diverse people.


Further information on the project is available to you on or by contacting Dr. Michael Brüntrup (   


Applications with the position number 2023-B-03 with complete, informative and detailed documents (cover letter, curriculum vitae, relevant certificates, recommendation letters, and informative application documents like M.A. thesis or scientific articles) must be submitted exclusively via application portal by 30 August 2023-

German Institute of Development and Sustainability (IDOS)
Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN Germany)
Tulpenfeld 6, 53113 Bonn
Phone +49 (0)228 94927-0, Telefax +49 (0)228 94927-130