Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Modern History, Engaged Research

Southampton, United Kingdom
£31,866 Pro rata per annum
Apr 26, 2021
End of advertisement period
May 21, 2021
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Part Time


Location:  Avenue Campus
Salary:   £31,866 Pro rata per annum
Part Time Fixed Term (12 months)
Closing Date:  Friday 21 May 2021
Interview Date:   To be confirmed
Reference:  1365321AR

Applications are invited for a Postdoctoral Research Fellow (RF) to join the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)-funded project, ‘Children and young people’s telephone use and telephone cultures in Britain c.1984-1999’, based within the History department at the University of Southampton. The project is led by Dr Eve Colpus, in partnership with BT Heritage & Archives and John Hansard Gallery. We are exploring the relationship between young people’s telephone use and youth agency in modern Britain c.1984-1999, using a mixed methodology (archival research, oral history interviews, and engaged research using digital humanities and arts-based methods) to investigate historical evidence, childhood memories, crowd-sourced data, and young people’s creative responses. The RF role is an excellent opportunity for an early-career researcher to drive the digital humanities research components of the project, and contribute to outreach and communication of the research with public groups. 

The post is a 12-month fixed-term contract, and is a 0.5 FTE appointment. The successful candidate will start work on 2 August 2021. Flexible working is welcome, but the postholder should be willing to travel for archival and other research and for team meetings throughout the period of the post, as relevant.

Applicants must have a PhD* or equivalent research experience in a field of modern history, with extensive research experience in digital humanities. Competence in systematic working with databases is essential, and experience in using sources including oral history interviews and social surveys is also desirable. 


The Research Fellow will have two main areas of responsibility:

i) Qualitative and quantitative research and analysis, mainly focused on data collection and analysis for the research strand, ‘Mapping Southampton’s Phone Spaces’. This strand will comprise crowd-sourced data collection (visual and audio files and written memories) about engagement with phones in the city of Southampton from the 1980s to the present day. Website users will submit data to the project website, which the RF will supplement with data collected from their research; the total will form a dataset which the third-party web mapping service providers will use to create an interactive digital map. Once data collection has ended, the RF will analyse the database and create data analytics. The RF will also undertake additional archival research in collaboration with the PI and project partner, BT Heritage & Archives. 

ii) Taking a leading role in managing the project social media channels to outreach with public and local groups and engage them with the research, and contributing ideas to the project team on how best to collect insights from social media users and creatively communicate the key messages of the research. The RF will also be encouraged to support wider strands of the project’s engaged research and activities in collaboration with the PI and project partners. 

Development opportunities

The postholder will receive mentoring and gain experience, including leadership, in cutting-edge engaged research, impact, working as part of a collaborative research team, and research networking opportunities. They will be encouraged to develop their own research and professional goals and undertake training (for which there is a project budget). 

Employees at the University of Southampton have access to a range of core benefits, including pension scheme membership, a generous annual leave allowance and excellent family leave arrangements. For more details see:

The terms of the grant that funds this position require that employment commences on 2 August 2021.

For informal enquiries about the position, please contact the Project Investigator (PI), Dr Eve Colpus: .

Interviews are anticipated to be held during the week commencing 21 June 2021.

*Applications for Research Fellow positions will be considered from candidates who are working towards or nearing completion of a relevant PhD qualification.  The title of Research Fellow will be applied upon successful completion of the PhD.  Prior to the qualification being awarded the title of Senior Research Assistant will be given.

Application Procedure 

You should submit your completed online application form at The application deadline will be midnight on the closing date stated above. If you need any assistance, please call Kate Pounds (Recruitment Team) on +44 (0) 23 8059 5456 or email  Please quote reference 1365321AR on all correspondence.