Research Associate

University of Bristol - School of Humanities

Broken Ground: Earthquakes, Colonialism and Nationalism in South Asia, c. 1900-1960

The AHRC-funded project Broken Ground: Earthquakes, Colonialism and Nationalism in South Asia, c. 1900-1960 invites applications to a fixed-term (12 months), full time (1.0 FTE) postdoctoral research associate position.

How far do natural disasters cause or catalyse political and social change? How do their effects play out over different spatial scales? This project will explore these questions, focusing on the impact of three earthquakes on colonialism and nationalism in late-colonial South Asia: in Balochistan (now Pakistan), in Lower Burma (now Myanmar), and in Nepal and Bihar (now India). Each earthquake was large and deadly, and all took place during a time of increasing nationalist resistance to British rule. In 2017-18 the Principal Investigator, with your support, will conduct archival research on the short- and long-term repercussions of these events, working in Britain and South Asia. During this time you and the PI will write peer-reviewed project outputs, while collaborating with the National Society for Earthquake Technology-Nepal to assess policy implications of the project. Overall, the project will establish the ways in which a historical approach can shed light on the field of disaster research.

You should hold or expect to hold a PhD or equivalent research experience in History or a cognate discipline. You will be expected to support the first year of the two-year project, rendering assistance to the PI in finding sources, discussing ideas, reviewing relevant literature, organizing workshops, writing a sole-authored peer-reviewed journal article and co-authoring a draft policy briefing paper. They might be expected to map data to Google Earth.

For further information about the department, see

Contact for informal enquiries:

Timescale of appointment:

Short-listed candidates will be notified on or about Friday 8 September 2017 and invited to interview.

It is anticipated that interviews will take place the week of 11 September 2017

Anticipated start date: 18 September 2017

Closing date for applications is midnight Monday 4 September 2017

The University is committed to creating and sustaining a fully inclusive culture. We welcome applicants from all backgrounds and communities.

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