Call for Application: Werdwet Research Fellowship 2022

Center for Advancement of Rights and Democracy (CARD) is a board-led, for-not-profit organization registered in Ethiopia under the revised Civil Societies Law 1113/2019 with registry number 4307. CARD envisions seeing a democratic Ethiopia and has a mission of echoing principles of democracy to make it the rule of the game in the country.

In 2020, CARD has introduced a research fellowship opportunity for women and youth members of the society named after the Guraghe legend, Yeqaqe Werdwet, who fought for women’s equal marital rights in the second half of the 19th century. CARD’s Werdwet Research Fellowship (Werdwet Fellowship) has previously taken two fellows, supported their research works, and published and disseminated them to stakeholders. In 2022, CARD is prepared to take four Ethiopian youth and women as Werdwet Fellows who aspire to scale up their research skills whilst helping knowledge-based advocacy for equality and promotion of a rights-oriented sociopolitical system.

About Werdwet Fellowship

CARD Werdwet Research Fellowship (Werdwet Fellowship) is named after Yeqaqe Werdwet, a legendary woman Werdwet, who lived about 160 years ago in the 19th century and who fought for equal traditional marital status in the Gurage community. CARD decided to name this research fellowship because Werdwet’s story is historical, and inspiring, and gives a lesson about addressing traditional challenges through traditional means by promoting and exhaustively exploring local remedies. Werdwet Fellowship will continuously take young researchers and assist their search for evidence to promote gender-sensitive values in Ethiopia’s traditions and give their research reports a platform for the use of civil societies.

Werdwet Fellowship gives women and the youth an opportunity to pursue their passion for researching and promoting indigenous knowledge and means to fight inequality and the rights of minorities and vulnerable groups.

Werdewt Fellows 2022 can select a research topic from the following required thematic areas:

  • Equal rights, protection of vulnerable and/or marginalized groups such as women and girls, people with disabilities, minority groups in different localities, etc.;
  • Effects of violence against vulnerable and marginalized groups such as women and girls, people with disabilities, other minority groups in different localities, etc.;
  • Traditional means of resistance to gender-based imbalance or other inequalities in a given community of Ethiopia;
  • Historical resistances stories against gender-based inequality in a given community of Ethiopia;
  • Traditions and reproductive health, or traditional means of entertaining special needs, marginalized and vulnerable groups’ voices in different communities; and
  • Violence and vulnerability of vulnerable and/or marginalized groups.

Werdwet Fellows 2022 will work on their research for eight months, full time, and CARD will provide working space, hire a part-time research advisor for each fellow, and allocate a budget for all necessary and related expenses. 

At the completion of the research, the study will be validated by experts and then translated from the original language (English) to Amharic and Afaan Oromo languages, and published and disseminated in both soft and hard copies to the public and identified stakeholders. Each fellow is expected to facilitate a research launch in public meetings to disseminate their research findings to stakeholders, research and educational institutions, as well as the media. Werdwet Fellows 2022 will graduate from the fellowship upon the launch of their research reports.

Fellowship Period: April 2022- December 2022.

Number of Fellows: Four

Eligibility Criteria

The applicant:

  • should be between the age of 22 and 34;
  • should be a citizen of Ethiopia;
  • should have the requisite academic qualification of at least a bachelor’s degree or four years of working experience in relation to the area of their proposed research topic;
  • should have a good command of at least one Ethiopian local language and English; and
  • should have strong analytical and civic engagement skills.

Requirements from the applicants

Interested applicants to Werdwet Fellowship 2022 are required to submit the following documents via until  Monday, 28th March 2022, from the date of this announcement.

  1. Research Proposal (1000-1500 words in English; the research proposal needs to have a working title, general overview of the research, key questions the research seeks to answer, methodology, and other relevant information.)

  1. The brief budget needed to conduct the research (maximum one page)
  2. Curriculum Vitae of the applicant
  3. Direct letter of reference from the person who is referred to CARD via email (siblings cannot be reference persons)

Selection Procedures

  1. The primary screening of applicants will be held based on the requirements and eligibility criteria defined above.
  2. Shortlisting of candidate Werdwet Fellows 2022 will be done by three juries at CARD; the criteria will be determined by the juries. Shortlisted candidate Werdwet Fellows will be notified via email by the 8th of April 2022.
  3. A one-to-one interview with shortlisted candidate Werdwet Fellows 2022 will be held (physically, via calls, or via internet communication as necessary) from 12 – 14 April 2022.
  4. Selected Werdwet Fellows 2022 will be notified of selection on the 20th of April 2022.

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