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Call for applications: Afrobarometer thematic seminar: Safety, security, and policing

06 November 2023, 8:00AM In person SAST
Register Call for applications: Afrobarometer thematic seminar: Safety, security, and policing (English)

Call for applications for the Afrobarometer thematic seminar on Safety, security, and policing

The Afrobarometer Capacity Building Team is opening a call for applications for an English-language thematic seminar that will combine skills building in intermediate quantitative research methods with a thematic focus on issues related to safety, security, and policing. The workshop will take place in Pretoria, South Africa, from 6 to 17 November 2023. This is an exceptional opportunity for Afrobarometer network researchers, academics, and practitioners interested in advancing their skills in quantitative research methods while exploring security-sector issues.


Workshop details

Theme: Safety, security, and policing and intermediate quantitative research methods

Dates: 6-17 November 2023

Location: Pretoria, South Africa

Language: English


Workshop objectives

  • Enhance participants’ understanding of quantitative research methods, specifically multivariate linear and logistic regression models, as well as the interpretation of results.
  • Explore the application of quantitative research methods to the study of safety, security, and policing.
  • Foster a supportive and collaborative learning environment for participants to exchange ideas, experiences, and research findings.
  • Facilitate networking opportunities among participants and establish connections for future research collaborations.



Governments, civil society, and other stakeholders play a vital role in ensuring the safety and security of all citizens, especially those who are most vulnerable. The United Nations recognises that deficiencies in safety and security are an obstacle to the attainment of sustainable development. Often it is women and children who disproportionately face threats to their safety and security. Sustainable Development Goal 5 focuses on promoting gender equality, while Goal 16 aims to promote peaceful, just, and inclusive societies. Among the targets of Goal 16 is the reduction of all violence, along with ending the abuse of children, entrenching the rule of law, and ensuring equal access to justice.

Since its first round of surveys, Afrobarometer has asked respondents about their personal experiences and perceptions of insecurity and safety, as well as the performance of the police. In addition, for the past decade, Afrobarometer has included questions about citizens’ direct interactions with the police, and the most recent survey round has included an additional question module on police professionalism. As a result, Afrobarometer offers a rich, detailed, and unique set of longitudinal data across many African countries. Systematic and in-depth analysis of these data is still incomplete.


Workshop highlights and key targets

  • Engaging lectures and interactive sessions in the field of quantitative research and safety, security, and policing
  • Hands-on exercises and case studies to reinforce learning and practical application of research methods
  • Group discussions and presentations to encourage knowledge sharing and peer feedback
  • Access to relevant research materials, resources, and data sets.
  • Opportunities to connect with fellow researchers and experts in the field.

During the seminar, participants will be required to finalize a short academic research manuscript (~4,000 words) using the latest Afrobarometer data, with a focus on exploring the themes of safety, security, and policing. To ensure participants’ success, Afrobarometer will offer comprehensive training and support in statistics, research design, theory, and relevant research literature. These training sessions will be led by Dr. Rajen Govender and Dr. Robert Nyenhuis and complemented by guest lecturers from research, advocacy, and policy making.

Seminar participants will receive feedback and guidance on their research manuscripts, enabling them to finalise their work for potential publication under the Afrobarometer banner. This seminar presents a unique chance for scholars and researchers to contribute to critical discussions on safety, security, and policing and make a meaningful impact on society’s well-being.


Who should apply

Space in the workshop is very limited. Please note that successful applicants will be required to attend on a full-time basis for the entire 12-day period of the workshop (not counting travel days). Please confirm your availability with your employer before applying.

The workshop welcomes applications from individuals who work for Afrobarometer or its national partners, core partners, or support units. Consideration will also be given to researchers, analysts, and graduate-level students if they have worked for one of the units listed above in the past or can demonstrate the use of Afrobarometer data in their research or work.

Competence in using SPSS (or an alternative statistical software package) and familiarity with Afrobarometer data sets are prerequisites for being admitted to the workshop.

Preference will be given to applicants who also meet the following criteria:

Some background, such as a relevant degree or relevant work experience, in social sciences, security studies, economics, public services, or related fields

An interest in expanding their knowledge and skills in quantitative research methods and safety and security

Attendance at previous Afrobarometer capacity building events (e.g. summer school, writing workshop) or demonstrated solid foundation in basic analysis skills

Publication of research using Afrobarometer data, such as Afrobarometer dispatches or policy papers, news articles, or website blogs

Note: The organisers encourage individuals under the age of 35 years, women, and those living with disability to apply for this opportunity. Please include relevant details in the application form.


Course expenses

The thematic seminar is free of charge, and Afrobarometer will cover travel and visa costs as well as local accommodation and meals. Final papers will also be eligible for incentive payments of up to $1,500 when published by Afrobarometer.

Application process

Applicants should complete this application form, in English, by no later than 31st of August 2023. Successful applicants may be asked for additional documentation to secure their spot in the seminar. Successful applicants will be informed no later than the first week of September.

For any inquiries or additional information, please contact Thomas Isbell (

Pretoria, South Africa