Postdoctoral Research Fellow – 19 Nov. Deadline

Job reference: R73691

Date posted: 22/10/2020

Application closing date: 19/11/2020

Location: Cornwall

Salary: The starting salary will be from £35,845 up to £40,322 on Grade F, depending on qualifications and experience.

Package: Generous holiday allowances, flexible working, pension scheme and relocation package (if applicable).

Job category/type: Research

College of Social Sciences and International Studies

This full-time post is available from 1st January 2021 on a fixed term basis for two years.

The post

The College wishes to recruit a Postdoctoral Research Fellow for a Leverhulme Research Project Grant, ‘Warnings from the Archive: A Century of British Intervention in the Middle East’, led by Dr Owen Thomas and Prof Catriona Pennell. This interdisciplinary project encompasses International Relations, History, and Political Science. It is a systematic archive-based comparison of two official inquiries, one hundred years apart, into British military intervention in Iraq: the Mesopotamia Commission (1917) and the Iraq Inquiry (2016). The project will deconstruct these inquiries to understand the contexts, values, cultures and beliefs that have shaped British grand strategy, the lessons learnt and lost from a century of intervention, and the voices heard and unheeded.

This Leverhulme Trust funded post is available from 1st January 2021 for two years. The successful applicant will work under the direction of Dr Thomas and Prof Pennell to conduct literature reviews, exploration of physical and digital archives, and discourse analyses. The post will include co-authoring peer-reviewed journal articles, disseminating findings, coordinating a workshop and journal special issue, producing an open-access digital catalogue of the project’s archival, and developing a project website (including podcasts and teaching materials).

About you

The successful applicant will possess:

  • a relevant PhD or equivalent qualification/experience in a related field of study, including but not limited to Political Science, International Relations and History;
  • knowledge of the broad history and workings of the British state and government, with specific reference to imperial/foreign policy (diplomatic, political, colonial) in the 20th century);
  • extensive archival experience (including working with digital archives), and possess sufficient specialist knowledge and track record of engagement with critical theoretical and methodologies approaches to History and/or International Relations
  • track record of engagement with critical theoretical and methodologies approaches to History and/or International Relations (including poststructuralist and postcolonial approaches);
  • ability to work collaboratively, independently or as a supervisor of research assistants to execute and develop project workstreams.
  • commitment to dissemination and outreach.

Please ensure you read the Job Description and Person Specification for full details of this role by clicking on the attachment above.

What we can offer you

  • Freedom (and the support) to pursue your intellectual interests and to work creatively across disciplines to produce internationally exciting research;
  • Support teams that understand the University wide research and teaching goals and partner with our academics accordingly
  • An Innovation, Impact and Business directorate that works closely with our academics providing specialist support for external engagement and development
  • Our Exeter Academic initiative supporting high performing academics to achieve their potential and develop their career
  • A multitude of staff benefits including sector leading benefits around maternity, adoption and shared parental leave (up to 26 weeks full pay), Paternity leave (up to 6 weeks full pay), and a new Fertility Treatment Policy
  • A beautiful campus set in the heart of stunning Cornwall

The University of Exeter

We are a member of the prestigious Russell Group of research-intensive universities and in the top 150 universities in the world (Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2019). We combine world-class teaching with world-class research, achieving a Gold rating in the Teaching Excellence Framework Award 2017.

Our research income in recent years means we’re fastest growing UK Research University and we seek to answer some of the most fundamental issues facing humankind today through this. 98% of our research is international quality (2014 Research Excellence Framework) and we encourage proactive engagement with industry, business and community partners to enhance the impact of research and education and improve the employability of our students. Exeter is one of only a few UK cities to have been designated as a UNESCO Creative City.  

With over 22,000 students and 5,500 staff from 180 different countries we offer a diverse and engaging environment in which to work. We are an equal opportunity employer, a Disability Confident employer and an Athena Swan accredited institution. Since 2019, the university has also signed an Armed Forces Covenant, demonstrating the University’s commitment to supporting the Armed Forces community. Whilst all applicants will be judged on merit alone, we particularly welcome applications from groups currently underrepresented in the workforce. 

For further information please contact Dr Owen Thomas, (email  

Click here for further details/to apply