Pandemic Message

Pandemic Update: For updates on the current status of each opportunity, please contact the Advisor listed, or for courses, check the linked Class Roster page.


Minimum GPA: 3.00

Terms and Dates:

  • Summer 2020


Donna Ramil

Cornell Affiliations:

Industrial and Labor Relations, Global Health Program


Opportunity Description

This ILR opportunity is a collaboration with the Global Health Program and offers an eight-week summer program in Lusaka, Zambia. Students will have the opportunity to work with the Southern African Institute for Policy and Research (SAIPAR), to complete a research project on various topics related to Zambia. At the end of their eight-week program, students will write a research paper and present their findings to SAIPAR, partner organizations, and relevant stakeholders during a final presentation. Through our collaboration with SAIPAR, students will be equipped with the resources to meaningfully confront the realities that accompany development. 

What is unique about this program?

Lusaka challenges the stereotypical Western understanding of poor, rural, underdeveloped Africa and students will have the opportunity to enhance their understanding of social issues through this lens. 

The students will work in small groups to write a research paper on an issue relevant to Southern Africa, which will then be considered for publication in one of SAIPAR’s online journals. Students may also assist SAIPAR with other projects, to be determined by the Director of Research and Programs.

To see what past students have researched, SAIPAR publishes Occasional Papers of their work:  (For ILR-specific papers: for 2017, Russell;  2016, see Cabbell;  2015, see Miles and Masson; 2014, see Stawasz & Talbot;  2013, Amaechi & Mildner)

Each year research topics change, depending on the needs of SAIPAR and the partner organizations. 

What is unique about SAIPAR?

The Southern African Institute for Policy and Research (SAIPAR) is an independent, educational research and development oriented research centre. It is registered and established under the laws of the Republic of Zambia since 2006. Through interdisciplinary research, publications, seminars, and dialogue facilitation, the Institute seeks to contribute to improved policy making, research capacity, and governance. The Institute aims to be a catalyst for new ideas and concepts on good governance and development in Zambia and Southern Africa and a documentation centre to serve as an indispensable partner on research and policy analysis.

Where do students live in Lusaka?

During the 8-week program, for the first 4-weeks students will live in-pairs with a local homestay family.  The homestays families are selected by SAIPAR ans most have hosted Cornellians in the past.  Students will share living quarters with one other student, share meals with their homestay family, and learn about Zambian culture and life in Lusaka. For the second 4-weeks, students will together in a hostel near to the SAIPAR campus.  Living near to the campus will facilitate the process of completing the research projects. 

How do I apply?

ILR students:

1) Review the program Requirements.

2) Meet with the program advisor (Donna Ramil, to discuss the program details and your eligibility.

3) Complete the online application by clicking on the "Apply" button on this web page. You must log in with your NetID and password to access the application.