Postdoctoral Researcher

Birkbeck, University of London - Department of Geography

This is an exciting opportunity for an outstanding researcher at doctoral or postdoctoral level to work on a Wellcome Trust funded research project ‘Prepping For Health Autonomy in the Face of Catastrophe: Examining the Imagined and Material Spaces of Survivalism in The UK’. This project investigates the decision-making, skill development and information seeking behaviour of individuals in the UK actively preparing for future catastrophic events, in order to understand responses to environmental futures, spaces of imagined state absence and associated concepts of self-reliance and ‘resourcefulness’.

You will have a background in a relevant social science or humanities discipline such as geography; anthropology; sociology; medical humanities; or future studies. You will have substantial experience in qualitative research, including conducting interviews and analysing and managing online qualitative data. An interest in environmental futures would be desirable.

The successful applicant will be involved in conducting ethnography within survivalist/prepping communities and with individuals in the UK, which may entail analysis of online communities, indepth interviews and participation in survival training courses.

You will be able to work independently and to liaise effectively with others. You will be able to identify and undertake routine administrative tasks associated with the research as well as carrying out the research itself (data gathering and data analysis). You will need good communicative and interpersonal skills to work sensitively with a wide range of people.

You will be required to travel to the research sites. You will have research facilities and library access in London (Birkbeck) and will be required to attend meetings in London and/or Manchester, with flexibility for skype meetings.

The minimum requirements for selection are listed below:

PhD (or equivalent) in a relevant subject area, or evidence that PhD is near to completion.

Salary: Grade 7 of the College's London Pay Scale which is £36,548 rising to £41,772 pro rata per annum

This post is part time, 14 hours per week (0.4 FTE) and fixed term for 15 months starting on 8January 2018 and completing on 31 March 2019. The salary quoted above is on the College's London Pay Scale and includes a consolidated Weighting/Allowance which applies only to staff whose normal contractual place of work is in the Greater London area. The appointment is subject to a probationary period of 12 months. Birkbeck also provides a generous defined benefit pension scheme, 31 days paid leave, flexible working arrangements and other great benefits.

The closing date for completed applications is midnight 25th September 2017

Interviews are likely to be held in the week beginning  9th October 2017

Informal enquires on the role are encouraged and can be made by email to Dr. Kezia Barker (PI), Department of Geography,

A link to the PDF document containing the job description and person specification is below.

Birkbeck welcomes applicants from all sections of the community. The College is committed to improving the gender and cultural diversity of its workforce, holding an Athena SWAN award and membership of WISE, operating the Disability Confident and Mindful Employer schemes, is a Stonewall Diversity Champion and is working towards the Race Equality Charter Mark.

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