Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Job at Mwanza Intervention Trials Unit (MITU), Research Assistant

Nyamagana Mwanza

The Mwanza Intervention Trials Unit (MITU) based within the National Institute for Medical Research (NIMR) campus in Mwanza is seeking a Social Science (qualitative) Research Assistant to work on a vaccine study in Mwanza. MITU is a collaborative research unit of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and NIMR. The mission of the Mwanza Intervention Trials Unit is to contribute to improving health through the development and evaluation of interventions against HIV and other health problems by conducting research, including clinical trials, to the highest international standards; to enhance the capacity to carry out such research in Tanzania and the East African region; and to contribute to the translation of research findings into health policy.

Specifically, the Social Science Research Assistant will work on a qualitative study called ‘Acceptability of reduced human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine dose schedules in Mwanza, Tanzania’.


This qualitative study is a supplementary study to a clinical trial titled ‘A dose reduction immunobridging and safety study of two HPV vaccines in Tanzanian girls’ (the DoRIS trial). The main aim of the DoRIS trial is to assess whether a single dose of HPV vaccine induces immune responses that are comparable to the currently-recommended 2 or 3 dose schedules in girls aged 9-14 years living in Mwanza.

The aim of the qualitative study is to understand the attitudes towards HPV vaccination among a subset of DoRIS participants, including views on vaccine dosage, why people fail to complete a course of vaccine and decision-making around vaccination.

Consenting DoRIS participants and their parents for the qualitative sub-study.
Organising and conducting in-depth interviews.
Transcribing digital voice recording of interviews.
Translating transcribed interviews from Swahili into English.
Conducting the research either at the trial clinic or in the community.
Liaising with the community about the study.
Checking on quality of the transcripts and translations.
Contributing to the data analysis and interpretation.
Contributing to preparation of scientific reports and publications, and their presentation at national and international meetings and conferences
Contributing to the scientific community at MITU and NIMR.
Performing other activities as needed and indicated by the DoRIS Research Coordinator or other project investigators.
Collaborating with MITU staff, and staff from MITU partner organisations.
Undertaking other tasks as may reasonably be expected by MITU staff.
Promoting MITU, its core values and services, and playing a positive role in the delivery of its day-to-day operations and strategic goals.

Essential criteria
Bachelor's degree in social science (sociology, anthropology, political science etc), psychological science or other related subjects
At least one year’s experience working on qualitative research studies.
Experience in conducting in-depth interviews.
Experience of transcribing voice recordings, preferably in-depth interviews.
Experience of translating documents/interviews from Swahili into English.
Excellent written and spoken communication skills in English and Swahili.
Commitment to working as part of a multidisciplinary research team.
Demonstrable computer literacy (Microsoft Word / Excel / Powerpoint).
Field experience in health or community work.

Desirable criteria

Experience of working with children.
Knowledge of HPV, cervical cancer and HPV vaccinations.
Experience of working in clinical trials or clinical research.
Previous GCP training.
Experience of analysing qualitative data using packages such as NVIVO.

The position will be available for 12 months and will commence as soon as possible. The post holder will be based in Mwanza, Tanzania. Field activities may involve urban and rural communities of Mwanza city. S/he will report to the DoRIS Social Scientist, the DoRIS Trial Manager and the Study Investigators.
Mode of application:
  • Interested applicants should email to request an application form.
  • The completed application form should be submitted together with a cover letter and CV no later than 5pm on Friday 10th November 2017. All 3 documents are required to be submitted to MITU.
  • Applications should be submitted by email to Paper applications will not be accepted.
Interviews will be held at the earliest available opportunity. Shortlisted applicants will be contacted for interview by email. 
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