Research Assistant/Associate

University of Cambridge - Department of Architecture

The 24 month AHRC-funded research project A Cinematic Musée Imaginaire of Spatial Cultural Differences [CineMuseSpace] proposes to enlarge André Malraux's idea of the Musée Imaginaire [Museum without Walls] to display, compare, contrast, and communicate spatial differences deeply embedded in the cinematic image, in order to generate a greater level of understanding and engagement amongst different cultures. Space is an expression of how societies see themselves while films, as spatially organiszed narrative constructs, reveal with unique immediacy architecture as experience.  Our aim is to generate a novel understanding of deeply rooted societal differences, by unlocking culturally significant architectural records folded away in the film medium.

Central to the research is the construction of a cinematic ontology of spatial cultural differences that will focus on representative films representative  from both the Western 'naturalism' tradition [Europe/USA] and from the Eastern 'analogism' tradition [China/Japan]. This distinction is based on Philippe Descola's ontologies, an anthropological approach to images from different cultures (La Fabrique des Images 2010) that can usefully be extended to cinema.

CineMuseSpace is an interdisciplinary research project, involving architecture, film studies, museum studies, cultural studies and anthropology. It is led by Prof François Penz (Department of Architecture, University of Cambridge) as the PI, with Dr Suzanne MacLeod (School of Museum Studies, University of Leicester) as Co-I,  together with Prof Andong Lu (School of Architecture University of Nanjing) and Dr Simone Chung (School of Architecture, National University of Singapore) as international Co-Investigators.

The RA post will be the main Research Assistant/Associate for the project and assigned to the project on a 100% FTE basis. The RA will be involved in all aspects of the research, from day-to-day operation, liaison between partners & consultants and maintaining a blog through assembling and developing audio-visual materials for the exhibition to logistical planning of the proposed series of public and academic events.  

Fixed-term: The funds for this post are available for 24 months in the first instance.

To apply online for this vacancy and to view further information about the role, please visit: This will take you to the role on the University’s Job Opportunities pages. There you will need to click on the 'Apply online' button and register an account with the University's Web Recruitment System (if you have not already) and log in before completing the online application form.

For any further information, please contact

Please quote reference GC11908 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy.

The University values diversity and is committed to equality of opportunity.

The University has a responsibility to ensure that all employees are eligible to live and work in the UK.

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