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Research Fellow - Data and Analysis

Employer
KINGS COLLEGE LONDON
Location
London (Greater)
Salary
£51,174 - £60,221, including London Weighting Allowance.
Closing date
29 Oct 2023

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Academic Discipline
Clinical, Pre-clinical & Health, Arts & Humanities
Job Type
Research Related
Contract Type
Permanent
Hours
Full Time

Job Details

Job description

The Policy Institute at King’s College London works to solve society’s challenges with evidence and expertise. We combine the rigour of academia with the agility of a consultancy and the connectedness of a think tank.  

In this role, you will be expected to work in a fast-paced and dynamic research environment on high-profile and influential policy research and analysis projects. This includes both academic, consultancy and exploratory projects as well as more media-focused polling.

The successful applicant will help to oversee the Policy Institute’s quantitative research capacity, including leading on projects or workstreams with analytical components, ensuring methodological rigor in the analytical approaches we use, and actively looking for opportunities to innovate in the methods we employ. The successful applicant will have significant experience of analysing survey data, though experience of working with other datatypes would be advantageous.

You will support existing projects, with a particular focus on a major study we are leading – the World Values Survey in the UK (WVS), funded by the ESRC, Cabinet Office, Barrow Cadbury Trust, the British Academy and others. The successful applicant would also be expected to support our ongoing work on topics such as polarisation, culture wars, freedom of expression, trust, democratic innovations, generational change and changing values/attitudes. Knowledge and understanding of theoretical frameworks and research trends in these areas, as well as the broader challenges of working with values and public attitudes data, would therefore be a helpful foundation for this role. 

The Research Fellow would be expected to work effectively on mixed methods studies and to be able to work independently with comparative and longitudinal survey data to produce the following types of outputs:  

  • descriptive analyses using time series data, combining several modes;  
  • regression and other multivariate techniques;  
  • synthetic cohort analysis and APC modelling;  
  • segmentations using latent class analysis; 
  • dimension reduction and scaling methods; 
  • random effects models (eg multi-level modelling); 
  • structural equation modelling.  

A high level of theoretical and applied understanding of statistical techniques is essential for this role, as you will be running analyses independently and advising a quantitative Research Assistant. The successful candidate will also be expected to show a commitment to continued professional development, in learning new skills and methodologies. 

In addition to working on our existing projects, you will also have time to develop your own research in your area of expertise – though ideally related to our research theme Trust, Facts, Democracy. The postholder is expected to develop their own strands of externally funded work, supported by the Policy Institute and wider College, and to build their external profile by publishing and attending conferences.

The Policy Institute also offers unique opportunities for applied and impact-led research, with deep connections into policy communities. Our diverse portfolio of research projects that use quantitative approaches are often high profile, time-critical studies, that feed directly into key policy and political debates, and receive considerable media coverage and policymaker attention. In this role, you will have opportunities for making connections with influential stakeholders via our networks (eg our Visiting Faculty), and ad hoc opportunities to work directly with high-profile policy stakeholders.

The successful applicant would also have opportunities to take on mentoring roles for junior quantitative researchers in Policy Institute team as well as via internships (eg KCL Parliamentary Research Internships, MA in Public Policy, and others).

This grade of this role is one stage beyond a post-doctoral post. This means we expect applicants coming through an academic route to have an established research profile in a relevant field and to be at least two years post-PhD, and/or those coming from a commercial or public sector research role to have at least six years of experience with clear evidence of specialisation and publication track record. In your application, please demonstrate how your experience meets these expectations.

In your covering letter, please also state explicitly how you meet the essential (and, where relevant, desirable) criteria for this role, structuring your letter under these headings.

This post will be offered on an indefinite contract.  

This is a full-time post.

Key responsibilities

Specific responsibilities include:

  • Contribute to the work of the Policy Institute’s Trust, Facts, Democracy research theme 
  • Undertake robust and independent analysis of quantitative data using a range of statistical approaches 
  • Oversee and/or support the analytical work of existing projects, particularly our WVS and culture wars studies 
  • Ensure smooth delivery on time and on budget of project outputs, balancing competing priorities 
  • Write or contribute to publications or disseminating research findings 
  • Develop funding proposals for future work, either as part of larger teams or independently 
  • Proactively engage with policy communities to ensure our work is of relevance and has an impact 
  • Mentor junior quantitative researchers and interns 
  • Identify and explore opportunities for innovation and methods development 

General responsibilities include:

Communication and networking

  • Communicate conceptual and complex ideas to a variety of audiences using appropriate media and methods 
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills are necessary, including delivery of a range of document types to ensure clarity and accessibility of complex content (including slide presentations, journal articles, informal and formal policy briefings and reports) 
  • Develop relationships with senior policy makers and practitioners in the UK  

Decision Making, Planning and Problem Solving

  • Ensure smooth delivery on time and on budget of project deadlines 
  • Collaborate with others in the Policy Institute, King’s College London and other institutions, where appropriate, on the delivery and dissemination of project tasks and outputs 
  • Contribute to reporting and communication with project partners
  • Contribute to identification and resolution of project development needs  

Teamwork and project partnership

  • Act as a responsible and supportive team member, helping shape and lead team working and the development of productive working relationship with others 
  • Engage with colleagues and activities in collaborating with institutions as appropriate 
  • Foster interdisciplinary working and promote a collegiate approach to collaborative working 
  • Demonstrate ability and/or willingness to use and learn a variety of different methodologies, particularly quantitative methods and policy engagement tools 

The above list of responsibilities may not be exhaustive, and the post holder will be required to undertake such tasks and responsibilities as may reasonably be expected within the scope and grading of the post.

Skills, knowledge, and experience 

Essential criteria

1.      PhD in a relevant subject, or equivalent experience 

2.      Advanced theoretical and applied understanding of statistical techniques, covering the techniques specified in the job description 

3.      Extensive experience of working with survey data 

4.      Track-record of research related to the Policy Institute’s Trust, Facts, Democracy research theme 

5.      Ability to communicate effectively with both policymakers and academic communities, both in person and in writing  

6.      Supportive and empathetic team member, who can work collaboratively in developing a programme of research, impact and engagement 

7.      Experience of providing research leadership 

Desirable criteria

1.      Experience of conducting policy-relevant research and analysis  

2.      Experience of undertaking policy analysis on short time scales for policy clients 

3.      Experience of mentoring junior researchers 

Further information

  • The postholder is based in a busy office environment
  • Willingness to commit to the Policy Institute values and behaviours in addition to King’s Strategic Vision 2029
  • Ability to operate effectively and efficiently when working remotely
  • The post holder will be expected to be working on campus for 40-60%FTE during the working week (hybrid working)

Company

King's College London is one of the top 20 universities in the world and among the oldest in England. King's has more than 27,600 students (of whom nearly 10,500 are graduate students) from some 150 countries worldwide, and some 6,800 staff.

King's has an outstanding reputation for world-class teaching and cutting-edge research. In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) King’s was ranked 6th nationally in the ‘power’ ranking, which takes into account both the quality and quantity of research activity, and 7th for quality according to Times Higher Education rankings. Eighty-four per cent of research at King’s was deemed ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ (3* and 4*). The university is in the top seven UK universities for research earnings and has an overall annual income of more than £684 million.

King's has a particularly distinguished reputation in the humanities, law, the sciences (including a wide range of health areas such as psychiatry, medicine, nursing and dentistry) and social sciences including international affairs. It has played a major role in many of the advances that have shaped modern life, such as the discovery of the structure of DNA and research that led to the development of radio, television, mobile phones and radar.

King's College London and Guy's and St Thomas', King's College Hospital and South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trusts are part of King's Health Partners. King's Health Partners Academic Health Sciences Centre (AHSC) is a pioneering global collaboration between one of the world's leading research-led universities and three of London's most successful NHS Foundation Trusts, including leading teaching hospitals and comprehensive mental health services. For more information, visit: www.kingshealthpartners.org.

King’s £600 million campaign, World questions|KING’s answers, has delivered huge global impact in areas where King’s has particular expertise. Philanthropic support has funded new research to save young lives at Evelina London Children’s Hospital; established the King’s Dickson Poon School of Law as a worldwide leader in transnational law; built a new Cancer Centre at Guy’s Hospital; allowed unique collaboration between leading neuroscientists to fast-track new treatments for Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, motor neurone disease, depression and schizophrenia at the new Maurice Wohl Clinical Neuroscience Institute; created the Cicely Saunders Institute: the first academic institution in the world dedicated to palliative care, and supported the King’s Sierra Leone Partnership in the Ebola crisis. Donations provide over 300 of the most promising students with scholarships and bursaries each year. More information about the campaign is available at www.kcl.ac.uk/kingsanswers.

Company info
Mini-site
KINGS COLLEGE LONDON
Telephone
+(44)02078365454
Location
STRAND
LONDON
WC2R 2LS
United Kingdom

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