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Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa



Vacancy Announcement: Executive Secretary

Deadline: 15th October 2024

The Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA) invites applications from suitably qualified senior African scholars for the position of Executive Secretary in its pan-African Secretariat located in Dakar, Senegal. This position, which will fall vacant in 2025, is the most senior management post in the Executive Secretariat and the successful candidate will be expected to function as the leader of a team of senior programme staff under the overall supervision of the Executive Committee of the Council.

Established in 1973 as a pioneering, independent, pan-African and not-for-profit organisation for the development of social research in Africa, CODESRIA is today widely recognised as the premier centre on the continent for the generation and dissemination of multidisciplinary research knowledge in the social sciences and humanities. The position of Executive Secretary is a key one both in the development of the programme mandate of the Council and the realisation of the strategic institutional objectives set by the triennial General Assembly of its members. The successful candidate will be required to:

  • Be responsible for the day-to-day management of the affairs of the Council to the highest professional standards on behalf of the Executive Committee;
  • Lead the Secretariat in implementing the scientific programmes and intellectual agenda of the Council;
  • Serve as the Secretary to the General Assembly, the Executive Committee, and the Scientific Committee;
  • Be responsible for the development and implementation of the Council’s fundraising strategy;
  • Negotiate and sign all contracts on behalf of the Council;
  • Undertake representational duties on behalf the Council;
  • Manage existing donor relations and expand the core donor base for the funding of the intellectual agenda and strategic plan of the Council;
  • Coordinate the production of activity and financial reports for the funders of the Council;
  • Enhance the membership base of the Council and structure a system of accountability to its members;
  • Mobilise the members of the Council to participate fully in its programme of activities;
  • Recruit and manage staff for the effective implementation of the Council’s work programme;
  • Take a lead role in the development of new programmes and activities, and in the mobilisation of researchers across Africa to participate in them in accordance with existing institutional rules and strategy;
  • Manage relations with other organisations in the interest of the Council;
  • Promote contacts with researchers, professional associations and regional organisations within Africa, across the global South and in the rest of the world; and
  • Play a lead role in the realisation of the scientific mission and mandate of the Council.


Applicants must:

  1. Have a sound university education and at least ten years of post-doctoral working experience in a reputable research and/or research training environment;
  2. Have a good knowledge of CODESRIA, its institutional mandate and programme strategy;
  3. Possess a demonstrable ability to mobilise and promote the work of African researchers;
  4. Be familiar with the African social research environment and be recognised by the African social research community;
  5. Have a first hand knowledge of the African higher education system in general and the African university context in particular;
  6. Have a strong personal track-record of research;
  7. Have a good grasp of trends in international social science research and programming;
  8. Have proven experience of institution and programme management in an academic environment;
  9. Be experienced in fund-raising, resource management and the preparation of reports for funding partners;
  10. Have a distinguished record of publications;
  11. Have demonstrable skills in the leadership and management of personnel in a diversified, multi-cultural environment; and
  12. Be fluent in English, French or Portuguese and have a good working knowledge of at least one of the other languages.

Working Conditions 

The salary level that will be offered will depend on the successful applicant’s experience and qualifications, and will be broadly comparable to those of similar posts in other international organisations.

Additional Information

More information about CODESRIA can be obtained from the Council’s website: www.codesria.org

It is CODESRIA policy to reflect the disciplinary, gender, generational and linguistic diversity of the African social science community in its structures. In this connection, female candidates meeting the required qualifications are especially encouraged to send in their applications for consideration for this position.

How to Apply

All applicants wishing to be considered for this position are required to supply the following documents:

  1. An application letter;
  2. A detailed CV describing the candidate’s professional experience;
  3. Three reference letters, two of which must come from people living in African countries other than the applicant’s country of residence; and
  4. Four of the candidate’s recent publications, three of which must be single-authored
  5. Copies of relevant academic certificates

The application documents should be sent through the submission portal available at https://submission.codesria.org/

PLEASE NOTE THAT ONLY APPLICATIONS RECEIVED VIA THIS LINK WILL BE CONSIDERED. The reference letters in support of the applicants MUST be sent separately by the referees to the official email: executive.secretary@codesria.org with the subject line “Confidential Reference”. Both the application letters and the reference letters should be addressed to:

The President,


Av. Cheikh Anta Diop x Canal IV,

BP 3304, CP 18524,

Dakar, Senegal.

Closing Date

All applications, including reference letters, must be received by Tuesday 15th October, 2024. Any application received after this date will not be considered.

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