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The Masifundise Development Trust (MDT) is collaborating with the Institute of Poverty Land and Agrarian Studies (PLAAS) at the University of the Western Cape (UWC) to seek for a field researcher based in iSiManagaliso and Kosi Bay to document evidence for Small-scale fishers Tribunal in 2023.

Start date 1 June 2022

This is a call for individuals to apply for the position of Field Researcher with MDT and the position forms part of the Living Landscapes in Action project that PLAAS leads with Wageningen University and the University of Cape Town. Living Landscapes in Action project is rooted in grassroots organisations and local realities of the unique living landscape that is iSimangaliso and Kosi Bay. Funded by the Oak Foundation we aim to transform conservation ideas and practices in Southern Africa in biodiverse rural, urban, land and ocean spaces. The project aims to co-create, disseminate, and campaign evidence that supports learning across growing networks seeking sectoral transformation.

We are looking for

Candidates with a background in relevant social sciences (anthropology, geography, sociology, political science, etc.) will be considered, especially candidates who have completed a Master’s degree in the broad areas of environment and development, political ecology, fisheries and conservation with a focus on spatial justice and blue justice.


  • A Master’s degree in anthropology, sociology, geography, or a related field, with an interest in conservation.
  • A willingness to do (ethnographic) fieldwork, live and work in the field-study site documenting evidence for the duration of the contract.
  • Previous experience in spending extensive time in the communities of iSiMangaliso and Kosi Bay will be a bonus.
  • The research evidence will feed into the Small-scale fishers (SSF) Tribunal planned for 2023. Evidence of previous research in communities or case histories will be an advantage.
  • Ability to work in independently within an interdisciplinary research team.
  • Excellent communication and writing and research skills
  • Ability to speak isiZulu and an understanding of isiZulu culture is essential

To apply, please submit a letter indicating your suitability for the position in relation to the study areas of iSimangaliso and Kosi Bay. In addition to the application letter, include your Curriculum Vitae with at least 2 contactable references, and if possible a case history from the study area.

Send your application to using the position you are applying for as the subject line.

Closing date: 15 May 2022

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.