Junior Research Fellow in Social Sciences 2019-2022 (Non-Stipendiary)

Wadham College proposes to elect a fixed-term non-stipendiary Junior Research Fellowship in Social Sciences from 1st September 2019. 

Nomination deadline: 12 noon on Tuesday 7 May 2019

The post is intended to provide a college attachment for an early-career, post-doctoral researcher employed in one of the social sciences departments of the University, and will be tenable for one year in the first instance and renewable for a further two years, or until the University research post terminates, whichever is sooner. The post will not be renewed beyond the third year.


Departmental Heads, or Principal Investigators/ Line Managers, are invited to nominate candidate(s) for this post and the College is grateful to colleagues for their assistance in this. Where multiple applicants are put forward, nominators are asked to please rank their nominees.

Nominations should be submitted directly to the college. A short account from the nominator as to the strength of the candidate(s) would be much welcomed. Nominators should ask their candidates to submit a curriculum vitae (including a list of publications) and covering letter of no more than 1,200 words, which should include a summary of research history and future plans. Candidates should also submit the names and email addresses of two referees (which may include their nominator). Shortlisted candidates will be asked to submit one piece of written work. 

All nominations and application materials should be sent to academic.appointments@wadham.ox.ac.uk by noon on Tuesday 7th May 2019.  Nominations will be considered by a small Selection Committee who will call for references as appropriate. It is planned to hold interviews during the week commencing 20th May 2019. 

Applications are particularly welcome from women and black and minority ethnic candidates, who are under-represented in academic posts in Oxford.  

Wadham College 

Wadham is one of the largest colleges of the University of Oxford, with approximately 450 undergraduates, 220 graduates, and over 60 Fellows. Founded in 1610 by Nicholas and Dorothy Wadham the College has a strong commitment to academic values, and preserves a liberal and progressive atmosphere. The College is academically strong, with representation amongst most of the subjects taught at undergraduate level at the University. Professors, Research and Tutorial Fellows, and Fellows by Special Election, are all members of its Governing Body, and all members of the College are encouraged to participate actively in College decision-making and in developing its policies and practices. 

Wadham College is committed to maintaining a vibrant and internationally excellent research and teaching environment. It accordingly expects its Fellows to be active in research and to contribute to a high-quality teaching and learning experience for its student body. The College has a particularly strong commitment to access and outreach work, and has one of the highest proportions of UK students from the maintained sector of any Oxford undergraduate college. Potential applicants can find out more about the College from the College website: www.wadham.ox.ac.uk

The Position: Main Duties and Responsibilities 

The College has a strong commitment to supporting individual researchers, and to contributing to the University’s strategic goals in research and teaching. All Fellows should find in the College a convivial and lively atmosphere conducive to interdisciplinary exchange and support. The contribution of JRFs to many aspects of College life, including contact with graduates and undergraduates, is very welcome. In return, the College will provide research support, not least in the form of contact with a wide range of experienced researchers and lecturers. 

The Fellow will be entitled to lunch and dinner when the kitchens are open, free of charge. They will also be entitled to an academic allowance to help with research expenditure, the purchase of books or the costs of attending relevant conferences (currently £1,000 pa). 

The Fellowship is designed to support the post holder’s career development, primarily through the support of their early-career research. The JRF will contribute to the research profile of Wadham College by engaging in high-level research and scholarship. The successful candidate will have or will be in the process of establishing a record of high-quality publications and will have clear plans for research to be undertaken during the tenure of the fellowship. 

Participation in the educational activities of the college through paid tutorial teaching and involvement in admissions and access work is also encouraged, and the College will take this into consideration in assessing applications. 

The post holder may also be asked to act as college adviser to a small number of graduate students. This role is a significantly lesser responsibility than that of a supervisor, but provides a graduate with a mentor in a related research area with whom to discuss their progress and career aspirations. 

As a Fellow, the postholder will be a member of the College’s Governing Body (subject to appointment as charity trustee) and will be expected to play an active part in the governance and administration of the College, including serving on College committees. They will hold the Fellowship under the terms of the college’s Statutes and By-laws.

The postholder will be encouraged to take part in training courses provided by the University’s Oxford Learning Institute which are designed to support the professional development of early career academics. For further information please see (http://www.learning.ox.ac.uk/support/teaching/). The post-holder will also be assigned a college mentor who will be able to provide support and advice on matters relating to the Fellow’s work at the College and more generally on career development matters.

Selection Criteria 

The post provides a college attachment for a post-doctoral researcher employed in one of the social sciences departments of the University (that is, a department within the Division of Social Sciences of the University of Oxford). Appointment will be subject to confirmation of that employment. 

The successful candidate will have produced research of a high quality (taking into account their career stage). The committee will consider the degree to which candidates’ careers may be enhanced by such an association, and equally the ways in which candidates are likely to enrich the academic life of the college (see ‘Duties and Responsibilities’ above). Preference will be given to those who have not previously held an equivalent early career post. 

This post is intended for early career scholars. Preference will normally be given to candidates who have completed their doctorate no longer than six years before the start of their post, excluding justified career breaks (parental leave, sick leave, career’s leave etc.). 

Terms of appointment 

The selection committee is responsible for conducting all aspects of the recruitment and selection process; it does not, however, have the authority to make the final decision as to who should be appointed. The final decision will be made by the Governing Body of Wadham College on the basis of a recommendation made by the selection committee. No election will be valid until and unless the recommendation has been approved by the Governing Body, and a formal offer has been made. The appointment will be subject to provision of proof of the right to work in the UK. 

There will be an initial probationary period of one year, during which the appointment may be terminated by one month’s notice on either side. The post will be renewed for the remainder of the fixed-term period provided that there is evidence of satisfactory progress. All appointments are subject to the relevant provisions of the Statutes and By-laws of Wadham College; copies of the relevant extracts are available on request. 

Equal Opportunities

The College is an equal opportunities employer. The policy and practice of Wadham College requires that entry into employment with the College and progression within employment shall be determined only by personal merit and the application criteria which are related to the duties of each particular post. Subject to statutory provisions, no applicant or member of staff will be treated less favourably than another because of their gender, marital or civil partnership status, sexual orientation, religion or belief, racial group, age or disability. In all cases, ability to do the job will be the primary consideration. 

Further information

Any informal inquiries about the post should be addressed in the first instance to the Warden’s Executive Assistant (email address above). 

Wadham College values

Wadham has a proud tradition of being at the forefront of advancing equality of opportunity, and celebrates vigorous debate, independent thought, and academic excellence. We seek to create a welcoming, accessible, and secure environment in which to work, study, live, and visit. Our community embraces people of all ages, backgrounds, races/ethnicities, nationalities, beliefs (including religious beliefs), genders, sexualities, dis/abilities, and appearances. This diversity, underpinned by mutual respect and consideration, enriches us all.