The University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM) invites qualified applicants to apply for four (4) PhD grants to work on topics relevant to the Capacity Building project titled, Climate Change, Energy, Sustainability: Transformations and Governance (CENSU Project).


The successful applicants will work with an exciting international team from the University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM), Eduardo Mondlane University (UEM), State University of Zanzibar (SUZA), Lúrio University (UniLúrio) and Oslo Metropolitan University (OsloMet).


Brief Summary of the CENSU project

The Climate Change, Energy, Sustainability (CENSU) is funded by the NORHED II program of NORAD (Norway). The CENSU project addresses the needs for increased education and research capacity in order to address some major development challenges in Tanzania and Mozambique: challenges related to the sustainability of extraction of their energy resources, particularly oil and gas, and the implications for climate change mitigation. In order for the involved parties to be able to address the mentioned development challenges effectively, the project aims to share and build competence within and across countries, and across disciplines (interlinking natural sciences and social sciences) in a South-South-North collaboration setting.


The project builds on the capacities created by the University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM) and State University of Zanzibar (SUZA) during the NORHED I project “Vulnerability, Resilience, Rights and Responsibilities: Capacity Building on Climate Change”. The Centre for Climate Change Studies (CCCS) at UDSM will be the main South partner in a regional network including relevant entities at SUZA and two Mozambican universities: Eduardo Mondlane University (UEM) and Lúrio University (UniLúrio). With contributions from Oslo Metropolitan University (OsloMet), they will develop interdisciplinary curricula in Master’s and PhD programs in the respective Tanzanian and Mozambican universities, based on highly policy-relevant joint research.


The project will carry out research on current and anticipated oil and gas exploration mainly in Lindi in southern Tanzania and Inhassoro in Southern Mozambique, as well as in other coastal areas of the two countries such as in the Cabo Delgado province if the security situation allows. Senior staff, PhD students and Master's students will work together before, during and after well-coordinated field work. The research will form the basis for the education of a much-needed local and national work force with high-level competence in climate change and sustainable development related to petroleum and other extractive industries.


PhDs and Master students will promote interdisciplinary Sustainability Science by integrating natural and social sciences, understanding the relationship between the environmental, economic and social dimensions of sustainable development, and exploring the implications of such a holistic approach for policy making and governance systems in concrete historical, local and global contexts. These objectives will be attained by focusing on the following thematic areas/sustainability challenges:

  1. Impacts of climatic change [including climate change-related resource management] and energy resource extraction [oil/gas, in particular] – on the wellbeing, livelihoods and human rights of designated local communities [specified below];
  2. Community adaptation/ responses to the above (1);
  3. Governance frameworks for resource governance and management – in both public sector and private (including EIAs and corporate social responsibility efforts) – and their involvement of local communities;
  4. Community conceptions of, engagement with and results/ benefits achieved through the above (3), and their recourse to informal means of contention and expression of grievances;
  5. Lessons learnt as regards finding pathways toward sustainability, for all involved actors (local communities, society/state, national and international private sector, etc.)


Expected focus of PhD research concept proposals

We invite PhD research concept proposals to address one or more of the following research questions (RQs):

  1. How and to what extent are ecological and social dynamics interwoven in relation to gas extraction in fragile societies and vulnerable environments?
  2. How and to what extent are local community livelihoods affected by gas extraction activities?
  3. How and to what extent do the gas projects create expectations and concerns in the Tanzanian and/or Mozambican societies?
  4. How and to what extent do the governing institutions and gas corporations respond to the expectations and concerns of citizens and how and to what extent do they promote sustainable development related to energy production?


What is expected from the research concept proposal:

  • That it transcends the natural science/social science divide
  • That it specifies the conceptual framings and the analytical approaches to be applied in the research project
  • That it provides a preliminary outline of the methods to be employed
  • That the geographical focus fits with the research sites identified in the CENSU project description


The length of each proposal should be maximum 2000 words (excl. the list of references.)



The successful applicant is expected to apply for admission into the PhD program at University of Dar es Salaam. Therefore the applicant must fulfil the formal requirements of that PhD program. The working language is English.

The applicant should:

  • Hold a Master's degree or the equivalent in relevant academic disciplines
  • If accepted, present a proof of English proficiency (e.g. 6.5 IELTS, 79 TOEFL, 500 GMAT or similar) within an agreed point of time. Mozambican applicants are encouraged to undertake additional English training if needed.
  • Have the ability to work independently and in close collaboration with others.


Given the emphasis on capacity building in the NORHED II, staff members in partner institutions are encouraged to apply.


Shortlisted applicants will be invited to be interviewed in Dar es Salaam on 4th November 2021 or in Maputo on 11th November 2021.

About the PhD Grant

The duration of the PhD grant is three years full-time. The duration might be extended to four years, subject to special arrangement with the parent university and in agreement with the UDSM.


Two of the involved grants (Grants I and II) include a mobility stipend for one year for study and supervision at Oslo Metropolitan University (OsloMet).

Grants III and IV include a mobility stipend for three months at OsloMet.


The senior project staff will serve as Supervisors or Co-Supervisors.

The size of the grants are: when staying in Oslo, NOK 20 330 per month (USD 2.330 with the current exchange rate). When staying in Tanzania or Mozambique, TSh 600,000/= approximately MZN 16.500.00 per month. When staying in his/her home country, there will be an additional remuneration for Mozambican grantees.


The Application

Your application must include:

  • A cover letter including a brief account of your research interests and motivation for applying for the position.
  • The names and contact information of two reference persons. One of whom must be the main advisor for the Master's thesis or equivalent thesis.
  • A research concept proposal (max. 2000 words excl. list of references) – see specifications above.
  • CV (max. 2 pages).
  • Transcripts and diplomas showing completion of the Master's degrees.
  • A list of academic publications if available.
  • Academic publications that you want to submit for assessment (including your Master’s thesis or equivalent).


Please note: the research concept proposal and all attachments should be combined in one PDF file.


Closing date: 20 October 2021

The application is to be sent to the following emails i.e., and copy to


The shortlisted applicants will be announced on 1 November 2021. The applicants are requested to make provisional plans to be interviewed either on 4th November in Dar es Salaam or on 11th November in Maputo, for travel to be undertaken only if they are selected.


Issued on 30 SEPTEMBER 2021


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