Southeast Asia Social Science Initiative Post-Doctoral Fellow

Southeast Asia Social Science Initiative Post-Doctoral Fellow

Cornell University embraces diversity and seeks candidates who will contribute to a climate that supports students, faculty and staff of all identities and backgrounds. We strongly encourage individuals from underrepresented and/or marginalized identities to apply.



The Southeast Asia Program (SEAP) at Cornell University invites applications for a Postdoctoral Fellow. We are seeking an independent and highly motivated social scientist with fieldwork and area expertise on one or more Southeast Asian countries. Scholars from a range of social science fields including economics, sociology, demography, geography, data science, labor relations, planning, and political science are encouraged to apply. We especially welcome someone able to work across disciplinary boundaries and is interested in the intersections between research, public engagement, and policymaking in the Southeast Asian context.

Since its founding in 1951, SEAP has contributed to understanding Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, the Philippines, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Myanmar, Brunei, East Timor, and Singapore in a comparative regional and global context, with a distinctive interdisciplinary program that spans the humanities, social sciences, and applied sciences. At present, Southeast Asia faces ongoing challenges, from environmental degradation and climate change to democratic backsliding, civil conflict, and inclusive economic growth. These challenges have practical significance for over the lives of over half a billion people in the region, and call for a renewed focus on how governments, citizens, and other actors must respond to them.

The most competitive candidates will have proficiency in one (or more) Southeast Asian language(s), and demonstrated ability to work collaboratively in multidisciplinary contexts. We strongly encourage scholars from Southeast Asia and underrepresented scholars who have been historically and structurally excluded from research and funding opportunities to apply. The Fellow will be housed in the Kahin Center for Advanced Research on Southeast Asia and, through SEAP, be part of the Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies. SEAP will also provide connections to the Brooks School for Public Policy, the Department of Global Development, and other Cornell units as relevant to the Fellow’s research and teaching interests.


The Fellow will teach one class per year on a topic focused on Southeast Asia in a department closely related to their field of study. They will primarily contribute to SEAP’s Southeast Asia Social Sciences Initiative by conducting independent research and disseminating their findings through presentations, publications, podcasts and public outlets such as the SEAP Bulletin and other forms of outreach. The Fellow is expected to be in residence at Cornell’s Ithaca campus where they can take advantage of the Echols Collection on Southeast Asia in the library and participate in SEAP’s weekly Gatty Lecture series as well as seminars and other programming in the Brooks School of Public Policy and/or the Department of Global Development.


Awardees must have earned the doctoral degree within five years of beginning their fellowship. Candidates with more than five years of postdoctoral experience and those who received their Ph.D. from Cornell are not eligible. Awardees may not simultaneously hold any other paid or unpaid position during the term of the appointment. Before starting their fellowship, candidates will be asked to confirm that their doctoral degree has been conferred.

How to Apply

  • The completed application, including three letters of reference, must be received by the application deadline of March 13, 2023 through Academic Jobs Online.
  • Applicants must submit biographical information, including the expected (or actual) date that they will receive their Ph.D. degree. Eligible applicants must have their Ph.D. conferred before beginning the fellowship.
  • Full CV in PDF format.
  • Description of proposed research (maximum of 2 pages, single-spaced, 12-point font, 1-inch margins, PDF format).
  • Draft syllabus for a planned course that falls within the general theme of the social sciences in Southeast Asia. The course may be offered at any level (introductory undergraduate, advanced undergraduate, or graduate) but the syllabus should include, at minimum,
    • A description of the course content and learning goals
    • A description of the intended audience
    • Weekly course plan
    • Preliminary list of readings
  • Full name and contact information of three references, one of whom must be the applicant's doctoral advisor. All reference letters should be submitted directly online by the reference writers to the Academic Jobs Online site. Please note that all references must be received by the application deadline on March 13, 2023.
  • Shortlisted applicants will be invited to participate in an interview via electronic conference with the selection committee.
  • Please note that non-U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents who are offered a SEAP Southeast Asia Social Sciences Initiative Postdoctoral Fellowship will be required to provide additional information to obtain a valid visa and/or work authorization. The SASSI Fellowship does not support H1B visa status.

Salary and Appointment Details

  • SASSI Fellow is provided an annual stipend based on NIH salary requirements and candidate experience. They will receive Cornell benefits for the duration of their post-doctoral fellow appointment.
  • In addition to the annual stipend, Fellows receive an annual professional development fund of $2,000 per fellowship year. Fellows will also have the opportunity to apply for additional research funds through discussion with the SEAP faculty steering committee and the SEAP Director.
  • Fellows are appointed for a one-year term with the potential for a second-year renewal. The SEAP Director will lead the second-year renewal process in consultation with the SEAP faculty steering committee.
  • Fellowship start date is negotiable between July 1 and September 1, 2023.
  • Candidates will be notified of selection decisions by April 15, 2023.


Fellows will be housed within SEAP, part of the Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies, and will work closely with the SEAP Director Tom Pepinsky and other faculty involved in SASSI.


As part of the university's comprehensive vaccination program, all Cornell employees are required to have and provide proof of an FDA-or WHO-authorized or approved COVID-19 primary vaccination or have obtained a university-approved disability/medical or religious exemption, regardless of their role and work location.


Employment Assistance:

For general questions about the position or the application process, please contact the Recruiter listed in the job posting or email

If you require an accommodation for a disability in order to complete an employment application or to participate in the recruiting process, you are encouraged to contact Cornell University's Office of Institutional Equity and Title IX at voice (607) 255-2242, or email at

Applicants that do not have internet access are encouraged to visit your local library, or local Department of Labor. You may also visit the office of Workforce Recruitment and Retention Monday - Friday between the hours of 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. to use a dedicated workstation to complete an online application.

Notice to Applicants:

Please read the required Notice to Applicants statement by clicking here. This notice contains important information about applying for a position at Cornell as well as some of your rights and responsibilities as an applicant.

EEO Statement:

Diversity and Inclusion are a part of Cornell University’s heritage. We are a recognized employer and educator valuing AA/EEO, Protected Veterans and Individuals with Disabilities. We also recognize a lawful preference in employment practices for Native Americans living on or near Indian reservations. Cornell University is an innovative Ivy League university and a great place to work. Our inclusive community of scholars, students, and staff impart an uncommon sense of larger purpose, and contribute creative ideas to further the university's mission of teaching, discovery, and engagement.


About Us

Cornell University is an innovative Ivy League university and a great place to work. Our inclusive community of scholars, students and staff impart an uncommon sense of larger purpose and contribute creative ideas to further the university's mission of teaching, discovery and engagement. With our main campus located in Ithaca, NY, Cornell's far-flung global presence includes the medical college's campuses on the Upper East Side of Manhattan and Doha, Qatar, as well as the Cornell Tech campus located on Roosevelt Island in the heart of New York City.

We offer a rich array of services, programs and benefits to help employees advance in their career and enhance the quality of personal life, including: employee wellness, workshops, childcare and adoption assistance, parental leave, flexible work options.