Postdoctoral Research Associate, Department of Mathematical Sciences

Durham, United Kingdom
Friday, 16 October 2020
End of advertisement period
Saturday, 12 December 2020
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Department of Mathematical Sciences

Grade 7: - £33,797
Fixed Term - Full Time
Contract Duration: 2 years
Contracted Hours per Week: 35
Closing Date: 12-Dec-2020, 7:59:00 AM

Durham University

Durham University is one of the world's top universities with strengths across the Arts and Humanities, Sciences and Social Sciences. We are home to some of the most talented scholars and researchers from around the world who are tackling global issues and making a difference to people's lives.

The University sits in a beautiful historic city where it shares ownership of a UNESCO World Heritage Site with Durham Cathedral, the greatest Romanesque building in Western Europe. A collegiate University, Durham recruits outstanding students from across the world and offers an unmatched wider student experience.

Less than 3 hours north of London, and an hour and a half south of Edinburgh, County Durham is a region steeped in history and natural beauty. The Durham Dales, including the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, are home to breathtaking scenery and attractions. Durham offers an excellent choice of city, suburban and rural residential locations. The University provides a range of benefits including pension and childcare benefits and the University’s Relocation Manager can assist with potential schooling requirements.

Durham University seeks to promote and maintain an inclusive and supportive environment for work and study that assists all members of our University community to reach their full potential. Diversity brings strength and we welcome applications from across the international, national and regional communities that we work with and serve.

The Department

The Department of Mathematical Sciences is one of the UK’s best Mathematics departments with an outstanding reputation in teaching, research and employability of our students. Ranked 7th in terms of grade point average intensity in the Research Excellence Framework 2014, it has an active programme of internationally recognized research in Pure Mathematics, Applied Mathematics (including Applied Analysis and PDE, Theoretical Particle Physics and Mathematical Biology) and Statistics and Probability. The research culture is vibrant, with many visitors, seminars, international conferences and workshops. We aim to provide a supportive and friendly environment with a strong sense of community. The Department, which currently has 88 permanent members of staff, is set to grow significantly, and in early 2021 we will move to a brand new building.

The Department holds an Athena SWAN Bronze award. Athena SWAN is a national initiative that recognises the advancement of gender equality, representation, progression and success for all in academia. The Department also supports the London Mathematical Society Good Practice Scheme, whose aim is to support mathematics departments to embed equal opportunities for women within their working practices.

Durham University is committed to the Concordat to support the career development of researchers. For further information please visit the Research Staff web pages on

The Role

The Department of Mathematical Sciences at Durham University invites applications for a postdoctoral position in the Centre for Particle Theory, to begin in October 2021, funded by an STFC consolidated grant in “Particles, Strings and Cosmology”. The position is for two years, and has a focus on supersymmetric field theory. Candidates with strong track records in field theory, string theory and related areas are encouraged to apply. Applications are particularly welcome from women and black and minority ethnic candidates, who are under-represented in academic posts in the University. The position involves working with members of the Maths CPT group and independently to further our research in this area.

Relationships and Contacts

The position is a Senior Research Associate to work on an STFC funded programme of the Maths CPT group. Interaction and exchanges of ideas will take place mainly with the members of this group and occasionally with other members of the Departments of Mathematical Sciences or Physics.


  • To play an active role in our research activity in supersymmetric quantum field theory, working with members of the research group and independently.
  • To understand and convey material of a specialist or highly technical nature to the team or group of people through presentations and discussions that leads to the presentation of research papers in conferences and publications.
  • To carry out first class research and present his/her work at seminars, both internally and externally, and at international conferences, and will publish its results in international scientific journals and open access electronic archives.
  • To conduct individual and collaborative research projects under the direction of the Principal Investigator or Grant-holder.
  • To deal with problems that may affect the achievement of research objectives and deadlines by discussing with the Principal Investigator or Grant-holder and offering creative or innovative solutions.
  • To liaise with research colleagues and make internal and external contacts to develop knowledge and understanding to form relationships for future research collaboration.
  • To plan and manage own research activity, research resources in collaboration with others and contribute to the planning of research projects.

The post is fixed term for 2 years; funding is available for this fixed period only.

The post-holder is employed to work on research/a research project which will be led by another colleague. Whilst this means that the post-holder will not be carrying out independent research in his/her own right, the expectation is that they will contribute to the advancement of the project, through the development of their own research ideas/adaptation and development of research protocols.

The Requirements



  1. A PhD in Mathematics or Theoretical Physics.
  2. Experience
  3. Experience in conducting high quality academic research.
  4. Demonstrable ability to write material of a quality commensurate with publication in highly-ranked journals.
  5. Demonstrable ability to present research papers at international conferences and communicate complex information to specialists and within the wider academic community.
  6. Demonstrate ability to respond to research developments and to use new research techniques and methods.
  7. Ability to present and exchange ideas in a team.
  8. Ability to work independently on own initiative and to strict deadlines.
  9. Ability to use initiative and creativity to identify areas for research.
  10. Excellent interpersonal and communication skills.



  1. Strong publication record in peer-reviewed journals, commensurate with stage of career
  2. A track record of presenting research at conferences, symposia, or meetings, commensurate with stage of career
  3. Demonstrable ability to develop research proposals and designs in collaboration with other academics
  4. Demonstrable ability to plan and manage independent research. 

How to Apply

Please Note: Candidates applying via Redeployment are only eligible to apply for a post at the same Grade or lower.

For informal enquiries please contact Professor Simon Ross, via telephone on 0191 3343051 or via email: All enquiries will be treated in the strictest confidence.

We prefer to receive applications online via the Durham University Vacancies Site. As part of the application process, you should provide details of 3 (preferably academic/research) referees and the details of your current line manager so that we may seek an employment reference.

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

What to Submit

All applicants are asked to submit:

  1. A CV and covering letter which details your experience, strengths and potential in the requirements set out above;
  2. A personal research plan of at most three pages

Next Steps

Short-listed candidates will be formally interviewed via skype and we anticipate that the assessments will take place in or around January.

DBS Requirement: Not Applicable.

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