REPOA's capacity building activities for researchers uses two main methods, learning by doing, where researchers undertake research projects, and training via specialised courses.

Researchers are publicly invited to apply for funding for analytical research projects though an advertised Call for Proposals on themes derived from REPOA's research agenda.

Research Themes

REPOA's research programme continues to be concerned with pro-poor growth and poverty reduction. There are six themes; three of which: agriculture, gender, and  technology are cross-cutting.

The themes are:

  • Growth and Development
  • Social Protection
  • Governance

Who May Apply

Research grants are awarded to junior and intermediate researchers based at institutions in Tanzania who can demonstrate how the grant will add value to what they are doing.

Applicants must have at least a Master’s degree with a strong research component, or be PhD holders with not more than five years of post-PhD experience.

Individual and joint proposals are acceptable; as well as a joint application from different institutions. REPOA encourages teamwork on the research project to promote inter-disciplinary research.

A non-Tanzania based organisation or researcher would be expected to have well established links with local research bodies or a local researcher.

When to Apply

A Call for Proposals will be periodically advertised in local newspapers, on REPOA’s website and through REPOA’s e-briefs sent to our mailing list.

Only proposals sent in response to a Call for Proposals will be considered for research grants.

To join REPOA’s mailing list, please email

Further information on submitting an application and the evaluation process can be obtained here


Research Projects Undertaken Under the Grants Programme

Recipients of REPOA research grants are monitored throughout the project with specific mentoring provided where it is determined to be necessary. The researchers are required to present their work in progress and draft final reports at REPOA seminars and at REPOA’s Annual Research Workshop; here they receive peer review and feedback from experts.

Researchers are also required to hold a feedback session with respondents who participated in the research project.

Once reports are completed, the draft of the final report is anonymously reviewed to determine if it is suitable for publication under the REPOA Research Report Series.

Preparation and Submission of a Research Proposal 

Please note that from 1 May 2011, only proposals sent in response to a Call for Proposals will be considered for research grants.

Please make sure that you follow the framework below, as REPOA will not accept a proposal that does not meet these requirements. Closely following these guidelines will improve your chances of obtaining a REPOA research grant and should help you to ensure that you have a well thought through plan for the research project.

Structure of a Research Proposal (in the order that it should be presented)


20 words maximum

What the research is about

Make the title short and clear

Avoid unnecessary punctuation

Don't repeat the keyword(s).


500 words maximum

Short overview of the research proposal

This is not an introduction, it is a concise summary.

Introduction and Background

1,000 words maximum

Context and background of the proposed research

Include what is known on this matter already and how your research would tie in with this; note that this is not the literature review (see below.

Specify the geographical location, as well as the target group of the research.

Statement and Significance of the Research Problem

250 words maximum

Reason for the research project

What variables are you looking at in the study?

What is going to be studied or investigated?

Why it is important that this subject be studied?

Research Objectives

200 words maximum

Desired outcome/result

What is/are the key objective(s) of the research?

One principal objective may be enough, and more than three major objectives would probably be too many. Objectives should be listed in order of importance (primary, secondary). Research objectives do not include using the results of the research to influence policy.

Theoretical Background and Literature Review

3,000 words maximum

What is already known and what needs to be known.

Indicate how existing work contributes to the proposed research, and vice versa, how the proposed research moves beyond existing information.

Key research findings should be discussed in some detail, and the most pertinent issues summarised.

All textual references must be included in full in the list of references towards the end of the proposal.

If you ignore major sources of information to which you could be expected to have access to, then the proposal could be rejected.

REPOA's library is a good source of reference material.

Methodology and Hypotheses

1,000 words maximum

The strategy

Describe the main research methods and techniques to be used.

Describe how the research questions will identify the key variables that the research is aimed at, and the relationships the researcher expects to find, or not find, between them.

Describe the sample and the sampling procedures (if relevant) – what, how and why?

Are there/ could there be any limitations?

Describe the instrument(s) to be used for data collection and the fieldwork. It is not vital to include the draft questionnaire.

It is not necessary at this stage to go into details concerning data analysis.

Consider ethics (if relevant) – consent, access, etc.

Ensure that the proposed research methodology is consistent with the objectives of the research

Policy Implications and Feedback

250 words maximum

Possible implications and results sharing

Be clear in the possible linkages to policy matters.

Indicate how the feedback to the community and the sharing of information with the stakeholders will be carried out, and what benefits could be derived from the findings.

Researchers and Institutional Attachments

Details of the senior researchers involved and their CVs, institutional attachments and the division of responsibilities within the proposed research project.

Indicate who is responsible for the training and supervision of fieldworkers and other junior researchers, if any.

A proposal from an institution should be channelled to REPOA through the head of the department of that institution. You should indicate the experience and capacity of your institution with regards to research in the field you will be working in.

Where joint research between two institutions is proposed, the nature of the understanding between them should be specified, preferably with documentary support.


Advise the breakdown of activities and approximate timing.


All references in the body of the proposal should appear in full in the references section.


Give details of the number of days, number of researchers and rates used to calculate the budget; there are maximum limits for the budget items.

REPOA's research grants do not include capital expenditure of any kind, such as vehicles and computers, nor do they allow for contingency expenses or overheads.

The budget should also foresee the costs involved in the feedback of research results to those who participated in the survey.

You must indicate what support you are getting from other sources in relation to the proposed research, if any.


- Research honoraria for the principal researcher(s). Honoraria will only be paid on presentation of final research findings which are acceptable to REPOA.

- Research assistants at US$ 10 per person per day.

- Data coding, inputting and/or analysis at the effective rate of US$ 10 per person per day.

- Data analysis and computing at the effective rate of US$ 15 per person per day.

- Secretarial and other personnel at the effective rate of US$ 10 per person per day.


- Daily subsistence allowance for travelling out of their workstation: principal researcher(s) US$ 60 per day, and research assistants US$ 20 per day.

- Incidentals when not travelling out of their workstation: principal researchers US$ 40 per day and a lunch allowance for research assistants of US$ 5 a day.


- Inter-town: Public transport by air, train and road at actual cost, or if you are using your own vehicle then the equivalent of the lowest public transport cost.

- Intra-town (this does not include going to and from your usual place of work / study). Receipt for actual costs of public transport, or US$ 0.75 per kilometre in rural areas and US$ 0.50 in towns.

Materials and Supplies:

- Photocopying – actual cost.

- Report production and binding – actual cost.

- Computer time - actual charge.

- Acquisition of literature – actual cost.

- Cartography – actual cost.

- Rates for material and equipment for action-oriented and natural science research are based on the type and nature of the research.

Other Costs:

Other research costs such as training research assistants, pre-testing questionnaires, organising seminars and mini-workshops to present work in progress will be funded on the basis of anticipated or actual costs.

Need more information? Obtain a free copy of REPOA Special Paper 07.23: ‘Guidelines for Preparing Concept Notes and Proposals for Research on Pro-Poor Growth and Poverty in Tanzania.', or contact REPOA


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