Post-doctoral Researcher, Health Services Research

Dublin, Ireland
24 Jun 2022
End of advertisement period
07 Jul 2022
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time


Research Centre Centre of Engaged Research (Faculty of Science and Health) 
Post title Post-doctoral Researcher
Level on Framework Health  services  research-  DCU/HSE  REACH Collaboratory
Post duration Level 1 2 years fixed term contract

Dublin City University

Dublin City University (DCU) is a young, ambitious and vibrant university, with a mission ‘to transform lives and societies through education, research, innovation and engagement’. Known as Ireland’s ‘University of Enterprise’, DCU is a values-based institution, committed to the delivery of impact for the public good. DCU was named Sunday Times Irish University of the Year 2021.

DCU is based on three academic campuses in the Glasnevin-Drumcondra region of north Dublin. More than 18,000 students are enrolled across five faculties – Science and Health, DCU Business School, Computing and Engineering, Humanities and Social Sciences and DCU Institute of Education.

DCU is committed to excellence across all its activities. This is demonstrated by its world-class research initiatives, its cutting-edge approach to teaching and learning, its focus on delivering a transformative student experience, and its positive social and economic impact. The university continues to develop innovative programmes in collaboration with industry, such as the DCU Futures suite of degrees, which are designed to equip graduates with the skills and knowledge required in a rapidly evolving economy.

DCU’s pursuit of excellence has led to its current ranking among the top 2% of universities globally. It is also one of the world’s Top Young Universities (QS Top 100 Under 50, Times Higher Top 150 Under 100). In the Times Higher Education University Impact Rankings 2021, DCU ranked 23rd in the world for its approach to widening participation in higher education and its ongoing commitment to eradicating poverty, while it ranks 38th globally for its work in reducing inequality and 89th globally for gender equality.

The university is ranked 23rd in the world and first in Ireland for its graduate employment rate, according to the 2020 QS Graduate Employability Rankings. Over the past decade, DCU has been the leading Irish university in the area of technology transfer, as reflected by licensing of intellectual property.

As part of this role the researcher will be required to participate in the DCU Research Career Framework. This framework is designed to provide significant professional development opportunities to Researchers and offer the best opportunities in terms of a wider career path.

The HSE CHO Dublin North City and County

Community Healthcare Organisation Dublin North City and County (CHO DNCC) is one of nine CHOs across the country and is responsible for providing care services to the population of Dublin North City and County. CHO DNCC has a number of unique characteristics including a mixed urban/rural geographic divide. CHO DNCC is currently in a period of major transformation that will significantly shift our operating model to support enhanced patient care by making care accessible as close to people’s homes as possible. Under Sláintecare’s enhanced community care framework, our CHO will create 12 Community Health Networks across our catchment to enable staff and teams work together in a more coordinated and consistent way. Each network of 50,000 population will work with the local population to enable integrated care across hospital and community services. Networks will therefore provide the building blocks for both future healthcare reform and expansion.

Background & Role

Dublin City University (DCU) and the Health Service Executive (HSE) Community Health Organisation for Dublin North City and County (CHO DNCC) established a joint research partnership called the REACH (Research and Engagement Across Community Health) Collaboratory in January 2022. The Collaboratory will bring academics and researchers from DCU and staff from the HSE Community Health Organisation for Dublin North City and County together to support the planning, design and evaluation of the reconfiguration and implementation of community health networks in the catchment area. The Collaboratory Steering Group now wishes to recruit a post-doctoral researcher to support the establishment of the Collaboratory and coordinate initial planning and research activities. The position will be based in the Faculty of Science and Health, DCU.

Applications are invited from enthusiastic and suitably qualified candidates for a full-time, two year fixed term position as post-doctoral researcher at the newly established REACH Collaboratory, a research partnership between Dublin City University and the HSE CHO DNCC. The post offers an excellent opportunity to join a new and unique partnership to contribute to the reconfiguration and implementation of community health networks, the development of research capacity, and supporting individuals and local communities to become more involved in research related to the provision of health services in their area.

Principal Duties and Responsibilities

The post-doctoral researcher will play a critical role in developing, leading and supporting REACH Collaboratory activities and will work closely with the Collaboratory Steering Group and the research team to plan and implement work packages. The post-doctoral researcher will report directly to the Principal Investigator and provide regular updates to the Collaboratory Steering Group.

The post-doctoral researcher will be responsible for overseeing and leading the day-to-day management, coordination and implementation of all components and deliverables of the REACH Collaboratory. This will include, but is not limited to:

  • Leading outcome based research, based on the priorities identified by the Collaboratory, research participants, health and social care researchers, and other staff, as appropriate.
  • Reviewing the evidence available for various interventions and generating qualitative and quantitative data to support CHO DNCC to translate research into actions that address health inequalities.
  • Audit/analysis of audits of gaps in existing services in the DNCC HSE area in relation to health inequalities and hard to reach groups.
  • Meta-analyses of existing research in relation to hard to reach groups within the scope of the HSE.
  • Meeting with key stakeholders to explore research priorities and perceptions of community engagement.
  • Liaising with relevant community, health, and research organisations, and DCU research centres and researchers.
  • Developing a model/strategy for Public and Patient Involvement and Engagement for the REACH Collaboratory, in collaboration with the PPI Ignite Network at DCU and the Centre for Engaged Research
  • Seeking funding from relevant sources to ensure the financial sustainability of the REACH Collaboratory over time.
  • Assisting with managing the administrative workloads to support the activities of the REACH Collaboratory, including coordinating activities with work package leaders and collating and monitoring KPIs for annual progress reports.
  • Managing and disseminating Collaboratory research activities, materials and resources through webpages and other media/forums, including knowledge exchange events.
  • Representing the REACH Collaboratory at relevant or related events, meetings and networking.

Minimum Criteria

Applicants should hold a PhD in a health or other relevant discipline (e.g., social science, psychology, allied health, health services research). In addition, it is essential that the candidate has:

  • Strong leadership and influencing skills and be capable of exercising judgement and making decisions on a wide range of matters.
  • A proven track record of effective networking and building strong working relationships within and across organisations, disciplines and professions.
  • Have excellent communication, interpersonal and organisational skills, be able to take initiative and work under pressure to tight deadlines, and the ability to work effectively as part of an interdisciplinary team.
  • Expertise in project management and experience of working with communities and health service users.

Candidates will be assessed on the following competencies:

Discipline knowledge and Research skills – Demonstrates knowledge of a research discipline and the ability to conduct a specific programme of research within that discipline;

Understanding the Research Environment – Demonstrates an awareness of the research environment (for example funding bodies, working with communities and health service users) and the ability to contribute to grant applications;

Communicating Research – Demonstrates the ability to communicate their research with their peers and the wider research community (for example presenting at conferences and publishing research in relevant journals) and the potential to teach and tutor students;

Managing & Leadership skills - Demonstrates the potential to manage a research project including the supervision of undergraduate students.

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