Post-Doctoral Positions: Limits of the Numerical University of California at Santa Barbara

The English Department of the University of California at Santa Barbara (UCSB) is seeking to appoint one or two post doctoral Research Associates to join a three-year project  called Limits of the Numerical. The position(s) will be held for 3 years from 1 October 2015. Deadline for application is June 8, 2015.  Appointment will be pending final funding approval.

Limits of the Numerical is a collaboration between the University of Cambridge, the University of Chicago and UCSB. It explores one of the most pressing sets of questions for modern social science and its relation to policy.  What is the effect of the pervasive introduction of numerically-based quantification into all aspects of social evaluation?  When does the use of numbers work against the very values they are introduced to support, promote or capture?   How do numbers as a system of evaluation clash with social values which cannot be so quantified?  The project’s intellectual scope covers three main strands of social policy: higher education (California), climate change (Chicago), healthcare (Cambridge).

The UC Santa Barbara project, led by Professors Christopher Newfield and Bishnupriya Ghosh in the Department of English, examines the meaning and consequences of quantification in global higher education. The UCSB team will conduct extensive, in-depth analysis eport on four areas: (1) university rankings, (2) calculations of returns on investment in BA majors, (3) research bibliometrics in qualitative fields, and (4) quantified learning outcomes. 

We seek to hire one post-doc in education-related data science and the other in “critical university studies” broadly construed.  Applications are invited from both these broad areas, in such fields as education, history, sociology, literary studies, postcolonial studies, anthropology, and philosophy, as well as fields such as applied computer science, cognitive psychology, data science, and data analytics.  We will favor candidates with existing expertise in higher education. 

Each post-doctoral scholar will conduct research in close concert with the project leaders. They will also be appointed as “teaching fellows,” with a teaching load of 1-3 courses per year in the general area of research.  They will participate in weekly research meetings, help organize conferences, and participate fully in the project’s output including public engagement activities and international workshops, as well as writing research reports, papers, and manuscripts

In addition to expertise in the areas described, applicants should possess:

  • A good first degree and a PhD in a relevant field of research
  • Familiarity with current digital humanities research and technology
  • Familiarity with various modes of research dissemination
  • Experience in presenting research findings
  • Ability to organize and participate in in collaborative research initiatives/projects

For details and to apply see Application Details HERE


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