Research in Sociology of Religion

Sociology of Science and Religion Research Fellow (Qualitative Social Science)

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Sociology of Science and Religion Research Fellow (Qualitative Social Science) – Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona

  • Postdoctoral research position in the project “Science and Religion Exploring the Spectrum

  • Duration: 15th October 2019- December 2021 (6 months’ probation)

  • Starting Date: 15th October 2019

  • Gross Salary: 35.000 euros (32461 pounds)

  • Based at ISOR research group, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Barcelona.

Description

The ‘Science and Religion Exploring the Spectrum: The Relationship between Evolutionary Science and Religious Belief in Global Perspective’ (SRES2) project will contribute to the development of a new field of research into the social study of the relationship between science and religion across cultures. It will bring together international researchers from the social sciences and humanities to revisit the assumptions that have previously been made about the intersection between evolutionary science and religion in public space.

The international social study of the relationship between evolutionary science and religion is an emergent and growing field of research. To date, research has tended to focus on US contexts, on scientists’ beliefs and perspectives, or on the beliefs of distinct ‘creationist’ faith groups and those who oppose them. This project will address this gap in international research by expanding the innovative multidisciplinary method utilized in the UK- and Canada-focused ‘Science and Religion: Exploring the Spectrum’ across 6 countries in 5 continents.

This position is for a post-doctoral Research Fellow to work on a qualitative social science research strand within a multidisciplinary research team, on this large-scale international project funded by the Templeton Religion Trust. They will work as part of a collaborative team of international researchers examining social and cultural perspectives on evolution and religion based in Argentina, Australia, Canada, Germany, Spain, Sri Lanka, USA and the UK.

The post holder will work closely with a Co-investigator in Barcelona (Catalonia, Spain) as well as the Principal and Co-Investigators internationally, to design, conduct and analyse interviews and focus groups with publics and professional scientists. They will also support the analysis of cross-cultural qualitative research findings and work with the relevant local and international Co-Investigators to ensure data is collected and analysed consistently across the participating countries.

The post holder will be expected to engage in all aspects of project dissemination, team meetings and international networking activities, including contributing the project-related websites, workshops and relevant conferences. They will be expected to develop and contribute to analysis of cross-cultural research findings and liaise with qualitative researchers in each participating country to disseminate research findings in a variety of formats for academic and non-academic audiences, both in English and Spanish. The field work for this role will be predominantly located in Barcelona, but the role will involve international travel for project meetings and workshops as well as for the purposes of research dissemination.

Main Duties / Responsibilities

  • To work with will work closely with the Principal Investigator and Co-investigators to undertake qualitative field research examining perceptions of evolutionary science and religion in Spain, including negotiating access to sites and participants, conducting interviews and summarising results
  • Analyse and interpret research data using appropriate qualitative data analysis software in collaboration with other project partners.
  • Contribute to the comparative analysis of research data across the participating countries
  • Situate the primary research data collected within existing research literature on the social scientific and historical study of science and religion in the USA, Europe and elsewhere
  • Apply knowledge in a way which develops new intellectual understanding, including the development of new insights and social theories
  • Contribute to the development of new techniques and methods in cross-cultural sociological research, encompassing qualitative research design and quantitative survey items
  • Contribute to the collaborative preparation findings for dissemination in a variety of formats for academic and non-academic audiences
  • Disseminate research findings through public engagement activities as appropriate
  • Prepare research outputs, including drafting academic articles or parts thereof, for publication and presentation at seminars and conferences
  • Provide guidance, as required, to support staff and any students who may be assisting with the research
  • Liaise with external collaborators and partners on the research, where appropriate
  • Undertake management/administration arising from research, including relating to research ethics and data protection
  • Help develop and participate in academic networks locally and internationally with the goal of exchanging information and forming relationships for future collaboration
  • Contribute as appropriate and in due course to writing bids for research funding, either collaboratively and/or for own research development

Person Specification

The essential and desirable criteria for this job are:

  • Proven interest in, and desirably experience of, undertaking research relating to the relationship between science, religion and non-religion in society
  • PhD in sociology or a related discipline
  • Experience of arranging, managing and conducting interviews and focus groups, desirably on a theme related to religion and/or science
  • Experience of and familiarity with qualitative data analysis software packages (QSR NVivo, Dedoose, Atles-ti, etc.), including desirably experience of conducting on qualitative data analysis with partners in other institutions and/or countries
  • Ability to communicate complex information clearly and to write and present for academic and non-academic audiences
  • Demonstrable cultural sensitivity in research and dissemination
  • Proven ability to publish in scholarly formats with clear potential to publish in elite international journals and comparable
  • Understanding of and ability to contribute to broader management/administration processes
  • Contribute to the planning and organising of the research programme and/or specific research project
  • Co-ordinate own work with others to avoid conflict or duplication of effort
  • A good understanding of the methodological implications arising from multi-disciplinary and cross cultural research
  • Proficiency in English and Spanish is required. Knowledge of other languages (Portuguese, Catalan, Basque, French…) would be considered a merit.

Practical details

Expressions of interest can be send to: [email protected] until 25th of September.

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