MPP/MPH Kluesner on Conducting Focus Groups for Maternal Health in Uganda

Conducting Focus Groups for Maternal Health in Kampala, Uganda   
By Maddy Kluesner

As a student studying global health, it has been my desire to work on research in the communities affected by the issues talked about in the classroom. As a research intern for the project, SMS Maama, my role has been to coordinate and organize the data collection from focus groups of here at the St. Benedict Hospital in Kampala.

SMS Maama is a student run prenatal texting campaign which has enrolled 111 pregnant women in texting program and measuring maternal health knowledge and feasibility. The focus groups are another arm of this research to understand impressions of this program among eligible women.

Before the first day I landed in Kampala, I had been having discussions with my Ugandan and American colleagues, as well as other qualitative researchers in global health to develop the training guide and script for the focus group. My goal was to integrate our research questions into an accessible document that could be easily used in my absence, and partner with my colleagues who would facilitate the focus groups. This partnership helped to make sure that what I had developed made sense in the local context, while also adhering to best practices in qualitative research methodology.

Every Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, my colleague Derrick I and take a taxi into the clinic together, set up a focus group room with snacks and drinks. I rely on his knowledge and experience to work with hospital staff to recruit attending patients into the focus groups. While he facilitates the focus group, I record, take note and transcribe recordings and monitor the quality of the data.

I felt elated the first day of running the focus groups because we had created a system together that could allow patients to open up to us about their experiences with pregnancy. The data that we are often searching for in qualitative research is only gathered by earning the respect and trust of others, and it is incredibly rewarding to collect and interpret experiences of these women to help inform how we can better provide innovative maternal health care.

Coordinating across cultures and geography takes patience and flexibility in terms of where and how we work. It requires us to place ourselves in the shoes of others and to adjust to different constraints. Being in a culture that is not my own, I know that I will constantly be perceived as an outsider. My role in global health work is to continuously prove that I can be of service to the community that is hosting me, and to learn how medical staff in Kampala innovate and provide medical care to others.

Maddy Kluesner
MPP/MPH Candidate
School of Public Health & Humphrey School of Public Affairs
University of Minnesota

HHH Prof. Kudrle on tariffs

crossposted from Humphrey Herald
Good Question: What are Tariffs?                                     

Professor Bob Kudrle answered that good question about tariffs, explaining what they are and how they affect consumer prices, in this WCCO interview. Kudrle also spoke with Forum News Service about the trade war’s impact on agricultural products and how the issue is playing out in the North Dakota US Senate race.


Job: Global Cities & Immigration Research Associate (Chicago)

Research Associate
REPORTS TO: Director, Global Cities and Immigration


The Research Associate supports the research and dissemination of global cities publications; engagement with nonresident fellows, partners, and constituents; and content for digital communications platforms. This role provides key support for the Global Cities team, including the Senior Fellow, Global Cities and the Director, Global Cities and Immigration. The Global Cities Project studies the role of cities as actors in shaping political, social, and economic policies around the world, and their capacity to solve pressing global challenges. A broad range of issues are examined through the global cities lens, including climate change, the economy, global governance, inclusion, inequality, infrastructure, innovation, migration, resilience, resource scarcity, security threats, smart cities, and urban diplomacy. This area of study builds on and is closely aligned with the Council’s annual Chicago Forum on Global Cities, hosted in partnership with the Financial Times.

  • Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:
  • Provide research support to the Senior Fellow, Global Cities and the Global Cities Project team, including literature reviews, data analysis, identifying data sources, ensuring data integrity and accuracy, helping with qualitative interviews, and supporting peer reviews and consultative research processes
  • Assist in writing and editing drafts of global cities reports, policy briefs, project proposals, meeting summaries, blogs, and op-eds, and critically reviewing and fact-checking materials produced by fellows, nonresident fellows, and colleagues
  • Work with the Communications team to design and carry out dissemination strategies of global cities research through digital platforms, including obtaining data for infographics, drafting content to use on social media, writing related blogs and op-eds, drafting podcast questions, developing digital interactives, and providing updates for the Chicago Council website
  • Assist as needed with the presentation of research and publications, including creating PowerPoint presentations with complex graphs, developing talking points, and compiling other related documents
  • Manage production and distribution of global cities newsletters and news brief; staying up-to-date on relevant and breaking news, events, policy developments, and announcements; identifying opportunities to highlight past work with current news cycles; and growing the global cities listserv annually.
  • Provide support at Council events approximately 3-4 times monthly (registration, ushering, etc.), requiring some evening and early morning hours.
  • Occasionally assist at the front desk to relieve Reception and Database Services Assistant in meeting/greeting Council constituents and handling incoming calls.
  • Other projects as assigned.

  • 2+ years’ experience in research-based and/or policy arena working with government, nonprofits, think tanks, or academia
  • A master’s degree in a relevant global affairs field – e.g., political science, history, international relations, economics, public policy, urban studies
  • Demonstrated experience in research and analysis, quantitative and qualitative skills, and experience with datasets and statistical analysis
  • Superior verbal and written communication skills (editorial and proofreading), including the ability to communicate complex concepts and topics clearly, thoroughly, and succinctly; preferable experience with policy-relevant writing and Chicago Manual of Style
  • Strong interest in foreign policy, global governance, political theory, and global cities
  • Strong interpersonal skills with the ability to professionally interact with high-level stakeholders and experts
  • Experience adapting content for digital media platforms
  • Prior experience using Salesforce is helpful
  • Exceptional attention to detail, time-management, and organizational skills
  • Ability to work independently, meet deadlines, adjust to changing circumstances, and manage multiple projects simultaneously; thrives in fast-paced and dynamic environment

The Chicago Council on Global Affairs is an independent, nonpartisan organization that provides insight – and influences the public discourse – on critical global issues. We convene leading global voices and conduct independent research to bring clarity and offer solutions to challenges and opportunities across the globe. Ranked the #1 Think Tank to Watch worldwide, the Council on Global Affairs is committed to engaging the public and raising global awareness of issues that transcend borders and transform how people, business and governments engage the world.

Please email a cover letter and résumé as Word or PDF documents to Other career opportunities can be found on the Council’s website at EOE

Nobel Peace Prize Forum, Sept 13-15, Minneapolis

Join us at Augsburg University              

September 13 — 15, 2018

To honor the work of President Juan M. Santos of Colombia (2016 laureate)
and the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (2017 laureate)


W. African Research Centre travel grants

Application ends: Saturday, September 15th.

The WARC Travel Grant supports West African post graduate scholars and researchers carrying out research on the African continent. Studies in all disciplines are welcome. This grant covers travel taking place between December 1, 2018 and June 30, 2019.

Complete your application using this link!

Please share with your contacts!

The WARC Travel Grant promotes intra-African cooperation and exchange among researchers and institutions by providing support to African scholars and graduate students for research visits to other institutions on the continent. The WARC Travel Grant provides travel costs up to $1,500 and a stipend of $1,500. This competition is open only to West African nationals, with preference given to those affiliated with West African colleges, universities, or research institutions. Travel grant funds may be used to: 1) attend and present papers at academic conferences relevant to the applicant’s field of research; 2) visit libraries or archives that contain resources necessary to the applicant’s current academic work; 3) engage in collaborative work with colleagues at another institution; 4) travel to a research site.

Successful candidates must agree to make public presentations on their research to 1) their academic institution, and 2) their local communities. Moreover, successful candidates will submit to the WARC Library in Dakar one copy of their dissertation/thesis, articles, and other publications arising from the research funded through this grant.

All applications must be submitted online. Complete applications will include uploaded word, pdf, or jpgs of all of the documents listed below. Incomplete applications will not be considered.
  • A brief (50-80 word) abstract of the activity to be funded, beginning with a clear statement of purpose
  • A description (6 double-spaced pages maximum) of the applicant’s research and how the proposed travel is relevant to this work. This should be presented in language understandable to non-specialist readers
  • A proposed budget
  • A curriculum vitae with research and teaching record when relevant
  • If attending a conference, an abstract of the paper to be read and a letter of acceptance to the conference
  • If visiting another institution, an invitation from host institution
  • If travel is to consult archives or other materials, a description of the collections to be consulted and their significance to the applicant’s research
  • For graduate students, a letter of recommendation by the professor overseeing their research
  • Proof of citizenship in the form of a photocopy of the applicant’s passport (please note: this competition is open only to West African nationals).

Please address inquiries to
Mariane Yade
West African Research Center/Centre de Recherche Ouest Africaine

Funding for the WARC Travel Grant Program is provided by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the US Department of State through a grant from the Council of American Overseas Research Centers.

This material is cross-posted from the Peace and Collaborative Development Network, and appears to be an interesting opportunity for the Humphrey community.   This is meant for information sharing purposes only. 

Abe Fellowship, apps due Sept 1

This material is cross-posted from the Peace and Collaborative Development Network, and appears to be an interesting opportunity for the Humphrey community.   This is meant for information sharing purposes only.  

The Social Science Research Council (SSRC) and the Japan Foundation Center for Global Partnership (CGP) announce the annual Abe Fellowship Program competition. Funding for the Abe Fellowship Program is provided by CGP.

The Purpose of the Fellowship

The Abe Fellowship is designed to encourage international multidisciplinary research on topics of pressing global concern. The program seeks to foster the development of a new generation of researchers who are interested in policy-relevant topics of long-range importance and who are willing to become key members of a bilateral and global research network built around such topics. It strives especially to promote a new level of intellectual cooperation between the Japanese and American academic and professional communities committed to and trained for advancing global understanding and problem solving.

Research support to individuals is at the core of the Abe Fellowship Program. Applications are welcome from scholars and nonacademic research professionals. The objectives of the program are to foster high quality research in the social sciences and related disciplines, to build new collaborative networks of researchers around the four thematic foci of the program, to bring new data and new data resources to the attention of those researchers, and to obtain from them a commitment to a comparative or transnational line of inquiry.

Successful applicants will be those individuals whose work and interests match these program goals. Abe Fellows are expected to demonstrate a long-term commitment to these goals by participating in program activities over the course of their careers.

The Abe Fellowship Research Agenda

Applicants are invited to submit proposals for research in the social sciences and related disciplines relevant to any one or any combination of the four themes below. The themes are:

1) Threats to Personal, Societal, and International Security
Especially welcome topics include food, water, and energy insecurity; pandemics; climate change; disaster preparedness, prevention, and recovery; and conflict, terrorism, and cyber security.

2) Growth and Sustainable Development
Especially welcome topics include global financial stability, trade imbalances and agreements, adjustment to globalization, climate change and adaptation, and poverty and inequality.

3) Social, Scientific, and Cultural Trends and Transformations
Especially welcome topics include aging and other demographic change, benefits and dangers of reproductive genetics, gender and social exclusion, expansion of STEM education among women and under-represented populations, migration, rural depopulation and urbanization, impacts of automation on jobs, poverty and inequality, and community resilience.

4) Governance, Empowerment, and Participation
Especially welcome topics include challenges to democratic institutions, participatory governance, human rights, the changing role of NGO/NPOs, the rise of new media, and government roles in fostering innovation.

Across the program’s four dominant themes, projects should demonstrate important contributions to intellectual and/or policy debates and break new theoretical or empirical ground. Within this framework, priority is given to research projects that help formulate solutions that promote a more peaceful, stable, and equitable global society or ameliorate the challenges faced by communities worldwide. Applicants are expected to show how the proposed project goes beyond previous work on the topic and builds on prior skills to move into new intellectual terrain.

Please note that the purpose of this Fellowship is to support research activities. Therefore, projects whose sole aim is travel, cultural exchange, and/or language training will not be considered. However, funds for language tutoring or refresher courses in the service of research goals will be included in the award if the proposal includes explicit justification for such activities.

Policy-Relevant, Contemporary, and Comparative or Transnational Research

Rather than seeking to promote greater understanding of a single country—Japan or the United States—the Abe Fellowship Program encourages research with a comparative or global perspective. The program promotes deeply contextualized cross-cultural research.

The Abe Fellowship Program Committee seeks applications for research explicitly focused on policy-relevant and contemporary issues with a comparative or transnational perspective that draw the study of the United States and Japan into wider disciplinary or theoretical debates.
Policy Relevance

The program defines policy-relevant research as the study of existing public policies for the purpose of (a) deepening understanding of those policies and their consequences and (b) formulating more effective policies. Policy relevance can also be found in research questions that are pertinent to understanding public dialogue on contemporary issues of concern to various sectors of society. All proposals are expected to directly address policy relevance in theme, project description, and project structure.

Contemporary Focus

The program is concerned with present day issues and debates. Thus, proposals in history or with a historical component must demonstrate how the research is specifically intended to inform contemporary concerns.

Comparative or Transnational Perspectives

The Abe Fellowship Program does not support research on a single country. Priority is accorded to comparisons of processes, problems, and issues across time and space. Successful proposals will explicitly address how the project will be comparative or transnational in construction and goals.

Typically projects involve data collection in more than one country or across several time periods. Data from a single country may be collected under the auspices of the fellowship only if the purpose of collecting that data is explicitly comparative or transnational. Single-country proposals that merely imply that the data have broader comparative relevance will be eliminated from the fellowship competition. Further, it is not sufficient for a proposal to implicitly suggest a comparative perspective because of the pervasive or global distribution of the phenomenon being studied.

  • This competition is open to citizens of the United States and Japan as well as to nationals of other countries who can demonstrate strong and serious long-term affiliations with research communities in Japan or the United States.
  • Applicants must hold a PhD or the terminal degree in their field, or have attained an equivalent level of professional experience at the time of application.
  • Previous language training is not a prerequisite for this fellowship. However, if the research project requires language ability, the applicant should provide evidence of adequate proficiency to complete the project.
  • Applications from researchers in professions other than academia are encouraged with the expectation that the product of the fellowship will contribute to the wider body of knowledge on the topic specified.
  • Projects proposing to address key policy issues or seeking to develop a concrete policy proposal must reflect nonpartisan positions.

Please note: Past recipients of the Abe Fellowship are ineligible. You may hold only one fellowship sponsored by the Japan Foundation, which includes the Abe Fellowship, during any one Japanese fiscal year, which runs from April 1 through March 31. Current recipients of a Japan Foundation Fellowship and those who will commence that fellowship by March 31, 2017, are ineligible to apply for an Abe Fellowship in 2016. Fellowship awards are contingent upon receipt of funding from the Japan Foundation Center for Global Partnership.
Fellowship Terms

Terms of the fellowship are flexible and are designed to meet the needs of researchers at different stages in their careers. The program provides Abe Fellows with a minimum of 3 and maximum of 12 months of full-time support over a 24-month period. Fellowship tenure must begin between April 1 and December 31 of a given year. Fellowship tenure need not be continuous, but must be concluded within 24 months of initial activation of the fellowship.
  • The fellowship is intended to support an individual researcher, regardless of whether that individual is working alone or in collaboration with others.
  • Candidates should propose to spend at least one third of the fellowship tenure in residence abroad in Japan or the United States. In addition, the Abe Fellowship Committee reserves the right to recommend additional networking opportunities overseas.
  • Abe Fellows will be expected to affiliate with an American or Japanese institution appropriate to their research. Fellowship funds may also be spent on additional residence and fieldwork in third countries as appropriate to individual projects.
  • Fellows will be required to attend specific Abe Fellowship Program events.

The application deadline is September 1 annually. Applications must be submitted online at For further information, please contact the program directly at

Humboldt Foundation’s German Chancellor Fellowship Programme

The deadline to apply is September 15th, 2018

German Chancellor Fellowship for University Graduates
The Alexander von Humboldt Foundation’s German Chancellor Fellowship Programme is targeted at
university graduates from the United States and other countries who have an international outlook
and initial leadership experience. It addresses prospective decision-makers, multipliers and thought
leaders from a broad range of professional fields such as politics, public administration and business
as well as society and culture.

The fellowships give them the opportunity to spend a year in Germany networking with other prospective
leaders from abroad and to explore new solutions to the global issues of our times. With this programme, Germany once again presents itself as a destination of choice for intercultural dialogue and as a meeting place for the international leaders of tomorrow.

During their stay in Germany, the German Chancellor Fellows usually pursue research-based, self-
developed projects in the areas mentioned above at German host institutions. They are supervised by hosts in Germany who they select themselves and who have the necessary level of expertise to mentor the respective research topics. The projects should not only be of social significance, but should also have
a long-term, publicly-visible impact. They should also be conducive to advancing fellows’ career
development. During their stay in Germany, fellows will be able to expand their specialist knowledge
and gain new international experience whilst enhancing their intercultural skills, thus enabling them
to develop into successful leaders.

After the fellowship has come to an end, they act as intermediaries between their own countries and
Germany and continue to be part of the worldwide Humboldt Network in which the alumni of the
German Chancellor Fellowship Programme foster particularly close contacts with one another. This
has resulted in a steadily growing network of international decision-makers, multipliers and thought

Please find more information about the programme here.
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