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Popular politics and gender – position for fieldworker

SWOP is looking for a fieldworker to conduct research on popular politics and gender. The ideal candidate will be a student embarking on an MA, who would like to research the way gender shapes community protests and the local ANC politics in several sites across Mpumalanga and Ekurhuleni.

Over the last few years SWOP has been conducting extensive research into community protests and local politics in several different research sites. The research has revealed complex gender dynamics, even though this has not been its main focus. Now we are looking for a fieldworker who will pursue this line of investigation in a more focused way. This will require an ability to analyse the way patriarchy and masculinity play out both in popular mobilisation and protest, and in branch politics and municipal politics.

The bulk of the research will have to be done before the end of March 2020, and then written up into a research report. The fieldwork will be guided and supervised by Prof Malose Langa (psychology) and Prof Karl von Holdt (SWOP). The ideal candidate will:

  • Have some research experience

  • be enrolled for an MA in 2019

  • have a demonstrable ability to explore and analyse complex gender dynamics through in-depth interviews and observation

  • be capable of independent work in demanding environments

While the ideal candidate will want to focus their MA research on the same topic, we will be prepared to negotiate terms with competent candidates. Options may include a student who has just completed their MA, and wishes to focus on this research for a few months, or a PhD student wishing to supplement their income.

The remuneration will be equivalent to an MA bursary, i.e. R 95,000.

Applicants should forward their CV, a motivation letter laying out why they believe they will be able to undertake this fieldwork, and a sample of their writing (article, MA chapter, essay) as well as the names of three referees, to Lucinda Becorny at

Applications close on 24 November.

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