Postdoctoral position: Digital everyday lives far from Silicon Valley: Technological Imaginaries and Energy Futures in a South African Township (DigiSAt)

Updated: about 2 months ago
Deadline: 12 Oct 2022

The Independent Danish Research Fund-funded project DigiSAt is looking for a postdoc from 1 December 2022 at the Department of Anthropology, University of Copenhagen.

The environments we inhabit change rapidly as digital technologies and infrastructures become ubiquitous, with major changes in the ways that states regulate, corporations profit from, and people consume, produce and (re)circulate digital media content. These changes impact the environment in terms of energy demand. In the DigiSAt research project, we mobilize collaborative, multimodal, and computational methodologies to inquire; What does the mobile phone and digital infrastructures do for- and to people in a township environment? What controversies exist nationally and locally around cost of data, the failing energy grid, and global tech giants arriving in South Africa? For more information see the project webpage (https://digisatproject.com).

The candidate will be employed at Department of Anthropology, University of Copenhagen. The University of Copenhagen was founded in 1479, and today has 37,500 students and 10,000 employees – of whom more than 5,000 are researchers – and revenues of DKK 9.4 billion. Nine Nobel Prizes have been awarded to researchers at the University, and the University boasts an international research and study environment and is highly ranked on the leading ranking lists of the world's best universities. The department of anthropology belongs to the Faculty of Social Sciences, one of six Faculties at the University of Copenhagen. The Faculty has a student body of about 6,700 students and app. 430 staff members and 135 PhD students.

Strategy of the Faculty of the Social Sciences
The Faculty is a successful academic community that strives to put knowledge into action by:

  • Engaging partners in the co-creation of knowledge, learning and social change.
  • Empowering our students to become reflective and responsible citizens who have the vision, the knowledge and the competences to change society for the better.
  • Energising global, European and Danish communities of knowledge by innovating research methodologies and by research findings with impact

For more on the Faculty strategy, see: https://samf.ku.dk/fakultetet/strategi/ . You can read the Department’s strategy here https://antropologi.ku.dk/ominstituttet/ .

The Department of Anthropology is one of Europe's largest anthropological research establishments in Europe with an academic staff of 50 (including PhD students), and approximately 550 students at the undergraduate and graduate levels.The Department represents a broad approach to anthropology, expressed in regional foci, theoretical orientation, and methodology, which results in a dynamic practice of anthropology, acutely aware of its own traditions and upcoming challenges.

Duties 
The task is mainly to conduct research, which the postdoc develops in dialogue with the PI (fieldwork in Cape Town, South Africa). The successful applicant is expected to actively participate in seminars and other activities in Copenhagen and contribute to the development of a vibrant research environment.

Requirements
PhD degree in anthropology, related disciplines or within digital humanities or social data science (or other degree equivalent to a PhD degree). The PhD degree needs to be obtained by the time of the decision of employment.

Assessment criteria/Ranking
The assessment of the applications is based on the quality and relevance of previous scholarly work rather than on the number of publications. We are looking for a candidate who will contribute to the DigiSAt project. The position requires the ability to conduct independent, creative, and innovative research of social scientific significance and think within the DigiSAt framework, good interpersonal skills, the ability to establish academic contacts around the world, the ability to publish in relevant scholarly forums, and the ability to convey the research questions and results to a wider audience in text and other formats. We are thus looking for a candidate with a track record and/or ambition to do anthropology beyond text, using computational and data-intensive methods to address societally relevant problems and experience in using web platforms for research, analysis, and dissemination. Additionally, experience in using audio, video, still images, and/or performance methodologies is a plus. 

How to apply
Submit a complete application at our online portal. Click on the “Apply now” icon at the bottom of the page to apply. The documents must be in Adobe PDF or Word.  

Applicants are asked to submit a project/or research proposal (maximum two pages) in which they present a research project that they want to develop during the duration of the position.

Applicants must submit: 

  • Motivated application (maximum one page).
  • Curriculum vitae (maximum two pages).
  • Outline of a research plan for the duration of the position (maximum two pages).
  • List of publications.
  • Examples of multimodal works (included as links to external webpage Vimeo or other).

About the employment
The employment is a full-time temporary position of 24 months. The starting date is 1 December 2022 or as agreed. Placement: Copenhagen (with fieldwork in Cape Town).

Terms of Employment

The recruitment process
Further information on the recruitment process at University of Copenhagen can be found here: https://employment.ku.dk/faculty/recruitment-process/

An Equal Opportunity Workplace
The University of Copenhagen is committed in its pursuit of academic excellence to equality of opportunity and to creating an inclusive working environment and therefore encourages all qualified candidates to apply, regardless of personal background, gender, sexual orientation, age, disability, ethnicity etc. For more on the diverse working place environment at the University and the University’s participation in the HRS4R HR Excellence in Research, see https://employment.ku.dk/working-at-ucph/eu-charter-for-researchers/

International applicant?
The University of Copenhagen offers a broad variety of services for international researchers and accompanying families, including support before and during your relocation and career counselling to expat partners. Please find more information about these services as well as information on entering and working in Denmark here: https://ism.ku.dk/

Contact information
Information about the recruitment process is available from HR, e-mail: hrsc@hrsc.ku.dk, please refer to ID number: 211-1148/22-2I.

Additional information about the position can be obtained from Karen Waltorp PI DigiSAt, e-mail: karen.waltorp@anthro.ku.dk.

The closing date for applications is 12 October 2022 23:59 CET.

Applications or enclosures received thereafter will not be considered.


Part of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), and among Europe’s top-ranking universities, the University of Copenhagen promotes research and teaching of the highest international standard. Rich in tradition and modern in outlook, the University gives students and staff the opportunity to cultivate their talent in an ambitious and informal environment. An effective organisation – with good working conditions and a collaborative work culture – creates the ideal framework for a successful academic career.


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