Conducts research and collects data on the global history of labour, workers, and labour relations

Vacancy: Internship Strikes in Africa

The KNAW Humanities Cluster is a collaboration of three KNAW institutes where humanities research (history, ethnology, literature, linguistics) is conducted through advanced methods, and computer sciences play an important role. The KNAW Humanities Cluster includes the International Institute of Social History, the Huygens Institute of Netherlands History and the Meertens Institute. They share one operational office, which organizes and supports the operational management of the Humanities Cluster as a whole and of the three institutes separately.

The International Institute of Social History (IISG) conducts advanced research on the global history of work, workers, and labour relations, and gathers data to this end; which is made available to other researchers as well.

The IISG is looking for a talented


For the project“ Strikes in Africa”

22,8 hours weekly (0,6 fte)

Trainee description:

The Project Strikes in Africa aims to the study of labour conflicts in the African continent in the comparative perspective and in the long-durée. The project’s objectives are two-folded. Firstly, the project intents to foster the study of the development of labour conflicts in the African continent in connection with economic development, social changes and political and institutional transformations. Here, the project will pay special attention to key moments in African History, namely the advent of modern colonialism, the independence movements, the processes of independence and decolonization, and the development economic activities oriented to global capitalist market throughout the entire period. Secondly, the project aims to place the study of labour conflicts in Africa in a more global perspective, allowing for comparisons with other regions in the southern as well as the northern hemispheres.


The intern will work on the construction of a dataset on strikes in the African continent between the 1850ss and the 1920s, which will serve as the basis for future study of labour conflicts in the continent. The intern will insert data in the dataset using the digital collection of newspapers published in the African continent during the nineteenth and twentieth century, and currently available on a dataset in digital format in restricted access known as African Newspapers (1850-1923). The intern may also work with hard copies of printed newspapers and other published sources, as well as with secondary literature. At the end of the internship, the intern is expected to write a brief report/paper analysing the data collected.  Write a report about the traineeship

The aforementioned digital collection, as well as the printed sources are accessible at the Library of the Africa Study Centre in Leiden. Therefore, the intern will be expected to split his/her internship hours between the IISH, in Amsterdam and the ASC, in Leiden.

Function requirements:

  • History, Social Studies, Political Studies or Development Studies in MA phase
  • Fluent in English
  • reading knowledge of one or several of the following languages: French, Portuguese, German and/or Italian

Remuneration and duration of the internship:

A monthly compensation of gross  € 150,= will be paid (3 days weekly).

The duration of the internship is 6 months. Travel allowance for commuting costs can be discussed.

Reactions to:

Please send in your application letter before 1 October 2017 to the IISG attn. Ben Stroomberg (HR Advisor), P.O. Box  2169, 1000 CD Amsterdam or via e-mail

More information about the internship can be obtained from Filipa Ribeiro da Silva e-mail: or via telephone number 020-6685866. Information about the IISH can be found on

More information about internships is available on

Human Resources
1 October 2017