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    The Africa Center for Strategic Studies is a U.S. Department of Defense academic institution established
    by Congress for the study of security issues relating to Africa and serving as a forum for research,
    communication, and the exchange of ideas. The mission of the Africa Center is to advance African
    security by expanding understanding, providing a trusted platform for dialogue, building enduring
    partnerships, and catalyzing strategic solutions.

    Learn more about this agency


    The Research Fellow plays a central role in supporting the functions of the Africa Center's Research section. Working as part of a team, she/he contributes to the Center's research agenda with the aim of producing high-quality, forward-looking analysis of strategic trends and challenges facing African security. She/he tracks Africa security literature closely and helps identify practitioners and scholars as potential Center collaborators and authors. She/he also provides conceptual guidance, editing support, and production oversight to Africa Center contributors so as to advance the Center's mission and mandate.

    The Research Fellow conducts publically-accessible, policy relevant strategic analyses to advance understanding of African security issues among African and American policymakers, practitioners, scholars, civil society representatives, and media. She/he produces policy and academic journal articles, reports, books, chapters, and blog entries as well as delivers oral briefings and presentations to share key findings.

    The Research Fellow engages with African and U.S. government security sector leaders to disseminate evidenced-based insights, guidelines, best practices, and lessons learned on critical contemporary and over-the-horizon African security challenges. She/he also identifies pressing policy questions faced by policymakers and practitioners leading to future Africa Center analysis.

    The Research Fellow will make regular research contributions in his/her area of expertise while keeping abreast of security interests across a broad array of African security challenges. She/he participates in meetings, conferences, and symposia that support Africa Center outreach activities and facilitates opportunities for exchanges with a wide variety of African and U.S. security sector professionals.

    The Research Fellow engages with faculty and participants of Africa Center academic programs, universities, and professional military institutions to incorporate key findings into curricula informing the next generation of African civilian and military security sector professionals.

    Performs other duties as assigned.

    Travel Required

    Occasional travel - Seldom travel required: 10-15 percent

    Supervisory status


    Promotion Potential


  • Job family (Series)

    0101 Social Science

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    Conditions Of Employment

    Background or Security Investigation: This is a Non-Critical Sensitive position which requires a background investigation. The individual selected for this position is required to obtain and maintain a Secret security determination to occupy a Non-Critical Sensitive position within the agency as a condition of employment.


    Master's degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education in a national security affairs related area or other appropriate discipline.
    - Demonstrated in-depth experience in conducting scholarly and policy research with publication track record on contemporary and emerging African security issues.
    -Deep understanding of Africa's societally-based security challenges, trends, and priorities.
    - At least five years' professional or academic experience working based on Africa.
    - Demonstrated ability to work cooperatively as part of a research team.

    - Doctorate's degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education in a national security affairs related area or other appropriate discipline.
    - Demonstrated expertise in guiding and editing policy relevant research
    - Well networked with civilian, military, and civil society actors engaged on African security issues.
    - Experience engaging with senior US and African security sector officials
    - Experience in building collaborative relationships across agencies and organizations
    - Experience in developing new insights and applying creative thinking and innovative solutions
    - French language proficiency


    Additional information

    This is a Title 10 Excepted Service Appointment. Appointment is not to exceed 3 years with the possibility for extension. Applications for this vacancy require a narrative assessment questionnaire to be completed by each applicant and uploaded as a separate document with submission. The required narrative questions are listed in the "How You Will Be Evaluated" section. Responses to the narrative questions must be completed and uploaded with the other specified required documents.

    DSCA has a comprehensive benefits package that includes retirement, social security, and thrift savings; health, life, and long term care insurance; paid vacation, sick leave, and holidays. DSCA employees enjoy flexible work schedules, transit subsidy, and the opportunity to telecommute.

    Initial Probationary Period: You will be required to serve an initial probationary period of 18 months.
    Reemployed Annuitants: Department of Defense has the authority to hire annuitants without reduction in pay. For more information, go to: http://www.dtic.mil/whs/directives/corres/pdf/1400.25-V300.pdf
    If you are unable to apply online, view the following link for information regarding Alternate Application.

    How You Will Be Evaluated

    A screening panel will review your resume and narrative answers to the assessment questions to evaluate your qualifications for the position. DSCA uses a multi-tier selection process for academic positions. You must attach a separate document with answers to the questions listed below. The following questions will be reviewed by the DSCA screening panel.

    1. Please describe your practical experience as it relates to African security studies.
    2. Please describe your experience in conducting and publishing policy relevant research on Africa's contemporary security challenges.
    3. Please describe your the analytic tools you use to advance understanding of policy challenges.
    4. Please describe your research project management experience.
    5. Please describe your demonstrated ability to work collaboratively as part of a team.
    6. Please describe your experience and proficiency in oral and written policy communication and, in particular, your ability to express clear, concise concepts and findings to policy audiences.

    Background checks and security clearance

    Security clearance


    Drug test required


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    Required Documents

    You must provide a complete Application Package which includes:

    1. Résumé: The latest resume submitted will be used to determine qualifications.
    2. Word Document with answers to questions in the How You Will Be Evaluated Section of Job Announcement
    3. Complete Assessment Questionnaire
    4. Other Supporting Documents
    5. Academic Transcripts
    The following supporting documents are REQUIRED to verify your individual eligibility status. Not all will apply for each applicant. They MUST be received by the closing date of the announcement.
    1. SF-50 - (If applicable) Notification of Personnel Action for current or former federal employees- with the exception of current permanent DSCA employees, please provide your most recent SF50 or the SF50 reflecting Career/Career-Conditional tenure and the highest grade held on a permanent basis.
    2. If you claim Veteran's Preference, (5 or 10 points) you MUST provide a copy of your DD Form 214 (Member Copy 4) listing the dates of military service and rank. If you are claiming 10 points (10 percent or more disability), you must also provide a letter from the Veterans Affairs Office and a completed SF-15 (Application for 10-point Veterans Preference - http://www.opm.gov/forms/pdf_fill/SF15.pdf) substantiating your claim.
    3. Other documents identified in the announcement.
    WARNING: Failure to submit a complete application package including any required documentation by the closing date of the announcement at 11:59 EST, or at the time of application for announcements with an extended closing date, may result in an ineligible rating and loss of consideration. To verify that your application is complete, log into your USAJOBS account, select Application Status and More Information. The Details page will display the status of your application.

    It is the applicant's responsibility to verify that information entered or uploaded is received, legible and accurate. HR will not modify answers submitted by an applicant.

    If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

    Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

    Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

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    A career with the U.S. Government provides employees with a comprehensive benefits package. As a federal employee, you and your family will have access to a range of benefits that are designed to make your federal career very rewarding.


    Eligibility for benefits depends on the type of position you hold and whether your position is full-time, part-time, or intermittent. Contact the hiring agency for more information on the specific benefits offered.

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    How to Apply

    To apply for this position, you must provide a complete Application Package. See required documents below.

    Click 'Apply Online' to create an account or log in to your existing USAJOBS account.
    1. Follow the prompts to complete the assessment questionnaire and upload required documents.
    2. Please ensure you click the Submit My Answers button to submit your application.
    3. Check application status by logging into your USAJOBS account, clicking Application Status, then More Information for this position. Return to an incomplete application by logging into your USAJOBS account and clicking Update Application in the vacancy announcement. You must re-select your resume and other documents from your USAJOBS account or your application will be incomplete.

    Agency contact information

    Leiesa Fish


    Apply Online
    Indianapolis, IN 46249
    Learn more about this agency

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    Learn more about what it's like to work at Defense Security Cooperation Agency, what the agency does, and about the types of careers this agency offers.


    Next steps

    Once the online questionnaire is received you will receive an acknowledgement email that your submission was successful. The questionnaire will assess your qualifications for the job. ALL eligible applicants will be referred to NDU which will convene a board to review all of the applicants. NDU will contact the applicants directly they would like to interview. We will notify you of the outcome after each of these steps has been completed. After making a tentative job offer, we will conduct a suitability/security background investigation.
    You will no longer need to call the HR Office to determine your application status. USAJOBS has added an alert setting to their system to drive status updates notification for applicants. You can elect to activate the proactive notification from your USAJOBS profile at any point during the application process to sign-up for automatic alerts when there are status changes for jobs to which you have applied.

Fair & Transparent

The Federal hiring process is setup to be fair and transparent. Please read the following guidance.

Equal Employment Opportunity Policy

The United States Government does not discriminate in employment on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy And gender identity), national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, genetic information, age, membership in an employee organization, retaliation, parental status, military service, or other non-merit factor.

Reasonable Accommodation Policy

Federal agencies must provide reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodation for any part of the application process should follow the instructions in the job opportunity announcement. For any part of the remaining hiring process, applicants should contact the hiring agency directly. Determinations on requests for reasonable accommodation will be made on a case-by-case basis.

A reasonable accommodation is any change in the workplace or the way things are customarily done that provides an equal employment opportunity to an individual with a disability. Under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) must provide reasonable accommodations:

  • An applicant with a disability needs an accommodation to have an equal opportunity to apply for a job.
  • An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to perform the essential job duties or to gain access to the workplace.
  • An employee with a disability needs an accommodation to receive equal access to benefits, such as details, training, and office-sponsored events.

Legal and regulatory guidance

This job originated on www.usajobs.gov. For the full announcement and to apply, visit www.usajobs.gov/GetJob/ViewDetails/527457500. Only resumes submitted according to the instructions on the job announcement listed at www.usajobs.gov will be considered.