About CSR

The Centre for Social Research (CSR) is the oldest research centre in the University of Malawi established in 1979 with technical and financial support from the United Nations Children’s Education Fund (UNICEF).  It is a research and training arm of the Faculty of Social Science which comprises six departments, namely: Economics, Population Studies , Political and Administrative Studies, Sociology, Psychology and History.  The Centre seeks to exploit and foster the intrinsic strength of an interdisciplinary approach to research across the social sciences at  the University of Malawi. In this regard, its main objectives are as follows:

  • To undertake applied social science research in order to generate robust evidence on pressing development problems facing the country and channel this evidence to policy makers and planners.

  • To promote scholarship, policy dialogue and exchange of knowledge within the realm of social sciences through organizing local and regional conferences, seminars and workshops.

  • To engage in critical social science research that challenges the status quo through and by systematically connecting research endeavours into local, national and international contexts.

  • To carry out research that is relevant to and/or rooted in local communities compiling, disseminating and publishing the results in national, regional and international outlets besides policy briefs, fact sheets and working papers.

  • Mount specialized short training courses related to social science research intended primarily toward raising awareness of epistemological, methodological and practical issues targeting early career as well as more senior staff in academia, local and central government agencies, voluntary and independent organizations.

Our Vision

A leading centre of excellence in social science research and capacity building for scholarship and public policy engagement in Malawi and sub-Saharan Africa.

Our Mission

Promotes and conducts cutting-edge academic and applied social science research and capacity building for knowledge generation and public policy development in partnership with local and international institutions.

Our Values


We are committed to serving our clients by delivering consistently high quality research, consultancies, short-courses, and out-reach activities.


We set the highest standards for the work that we do grounded in the belief of the trinity of proficiency, competency and reliability coupled with dedication to duty and team excellence.


We take leadership in striving for scholarship that changes lives of ordinary people through policy and deepening of understanding of the underlying dynamics of society in the 21st Century.


We dedicate ourselves to discovery of new ideas, practical translation of these ideas, and collaboration across disciplines through research, scholarship and outreach activities.


We act in an honest, fair and ethical manner, which fosters a culture of trust and manifests itself in all our activities and decision making processes.


We strive to create interdisciplinary, synergistic and collegial relationships characterized by honesty, partnership and flexibility.


We are committed to ensuring academic, pragmatic and fiscal integrity and value for money through prudent management of resources that are entrusted to us in the course of our work.