Postdoctoral Research Fellowship | University of Cape Town

Closing Date: 25 April 2023

Value: R300,000 - R450,000 p.a.

About the Opportunity

We invite applications for a Postdoctoral Fellowship at the Centre for Social Science Research, University of Cape Town under the supervision of Professor Catherine Ward. The prospective fellow will be based at the University of Cape Town in South Africa for the duration of the research project and work as part of an international research team to optimise the engagement, effectiveness, and cost-effectiveness of a chatbot-led parenting programme (ParentText) within the context of existing government service delivery in South Africa:

This ambitious project, which fits within the Global Parenting Initiative (GPI): will include both formative evaluation and a mixed methods randomised controlled trial (RCT; N = 2000 caregivers). The study will be conducted in collaboration with the University of Oxford, NGO partners, including Clowns Without Borders South Africa (CWBSA), IDEMS International, UNICEF South Africa, and the South African government. 

The appropriately qualified and experienced postdoctoral researcher will join our collaborative and innovative team on a full-time basis and play a central role in the success of this work. Their main responsibility will be to conceptualise and lead an observational component of the RCT to compliment self-report outcome measures for caregivers and their children. Key tasks would include development of a coding system, data collection, as well as observational assessment coding and analysis. The postdoctoral researcher will collaborate with other research teams and learning groups within the GPI working on observational assessments to ensure harmonisation of tools and approaches. They will also contribute to other elements of the RCT and provide support to other academic and operational colleagues at UCT and partner institutions, including the University of Oxford, IDEMs International and CWBSA. 

About you

Eligible applicants must have completed their doctorate within the past 5 years, and may not previously have held full-time permanent professional or academic posts. 

You have experience working with mixed methods RCTs, and in collecting and analysing observational assessment data. You have good knowledge of behaviour change interventions, parenting or family strengthening programmes, and digital intervention, and demonstrable proficiency in quantitative data analysis using R programme and qualitative data analysis using NVivo. You are a problem solver, with excellent communication skills and the ability to work independently and as part of an international team. You have published first-authored papers in peer-reviewed publications and presented at conferences, seminars and workshops. You are proficient in Microsoft Office Suite, and know your way around a computer.

For more information, please see the full job description here.

How to apply

Extended: Applications close 25 April 2023

Further information, including how to apply, is available in the attached job description. Any further enquiries may be directed to  and Paula Zinser at