Assistant Professor in Sociology (SOC_03)

Updated: about 1 month ago
Location: Durham, ENGLAND

Assistant Professor in Sociology (SOC_03) (
Job Number:
 24000212)
Department of Sociology
Grade 8: - £45,585-£54,395 per annum
Open-Ended/Permanent - Full Time
Contracted Hours per Week: 35
Closing Date
: 11-Mar-2024, 7:59:00 PM
Disclosure and Barring Service Requirement: Not Applicable. 

Working at Durham University A globally outstanding centre of teaching and research excellence, a warm and friendly place to work, a unique and historic setting – Durham is a university like no other.

As one of the UK’s leading universities, Durham is an incredible place to define your career. The University is located within a beautiful historic city, home to a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and surrounded by stunning countryside. Our talented scholars and researchers from around the world are tackling global issues and making a difference to people's lives.  

We believe that inspiring our people to do outstanding things at Durham enables Durham people to do outstanding things in the world. Being a part of Durham is about more than just the success of the University, it’s also about contributing to the success of the city, county and community.

Our University Strategy is built on three pillars of research, education and wider student experience, but also on our keen sense of community and of inspiring others to achieve their potential. 

Our Purpose and Values

We want our University to be a place where people can be free to be themselves, no matter what their identity or background. Together, we celebrate difference, value one another and are each responsible for creating an inclusive community that is respectful and fair for all.

Find out more about the benefits of working at the University and what it is like to live and work in the Durham area on our Why Durham? information page.   

The Department 

The Department of Sociology at Durham was formed in 1964 - initially as a Department of Social Theory and Institutions.  We currently deliver two successful undergraduate degrees in Sociology and Criminology; our criminology programme is 1st in the UK in the Times and Sunday Times Good University guide 2024. We also run a professional masters programme in Social Work (Durham was Social Work University of the Year in 2022), a new MSc Sociology and an MSc in Criminology and Criminal Justice. We also support the core delivery of the Faculty’s ESRC Research Methods Training.

Sociology at Durham is continuing an ambitious programme of investment to consolidate and expand its research capacity in its overarching research themes: 

  • Violence and Abuse
  • Criminal Justice, Social Harm and Inequalities
  • Communities and Social Justice
  • Health and Social Theory
  • Higher Education and Social Inequalities

Information about all research themes can be found here.

The post holder will join our established research theme in Violence and Abuse. This research theme is a core pillar of the work of the multi-disciplinary Durham Centre for Research into Violence and Abuse (CRiVA) and consists of a large group of scholars at different levels and a vibrant group of postgraduate researchers researching gender, violence and abuse. We also offer undergraduate and postgraduate modules on violence and abuse which are popular with students registered on a range of different degrees. Our current areas of specialism include responses to people who use violence and abuse, policing violence and abuse, violence and abuse in higher education, men’s involvement in ending violence and abuse, Black and Minoritised victims' experiences of violence and abuse, and LGBT+ experiences of violence and abuse. We are equally interested in extending these areas or adding new areas of expertise to our team but we’re especially interested in applications from men and/or those with international expertise/ perspectives.

We are also expecting that the successful candidate will be able to contribute to core sociological and/or criminological theory, or social research methods teaching. We have been involved with a decolonising project focussing on our curricula and more recently we are considering the internationalisation of our programmes. Candidates with expertise in theories of race and racism and intersectionality would be particularly welcomed.

Assistant Professors at Durham 

Assistant Professors on the Education and Research track are encouraged to focus on research and teaching, but are also expected to engage in wider citizenship to enhance their own development, support their department and discipline, and contribute to the wider student experience. 

Academic colleagues are supported to publish excellent research in their area of interest with a focus on high quality outputs (including monographs and journal articles), rather than quantity. We aim to support your research needs, including practical help such as resources to attend conferences and to fund research activities, as well as a generous research leave policy and a designated mentor.  

Durham University is also committed to ensuring outstanding teaching quality, stimulating learning environments, and innovative curricula for all our students. You will be supported to develop your teaching expertise and skills. 

We are confident that our recruitment process allows us to attract and select the best talent to Durham. We, therefore, offer a reduced probation period of 1 year for our Assistant Professors and thereafter, subject to satisfactory performance, your position will be confirmed as permanent. 

Applicants must demonstrate high quality research in the field of violence and abuse, with the ability to teach our students to an exceptional standard and to fully engage in the services, citizenship and values of the University. 

We strive to provide a working and teaching environment that is inclusive and welcoming and where everyone is treated fairly with dignity and respect. Candidates will be expected to demonstrate these key principles as part of the assessment process. 

Key responsibilities:

  • To pursue research that is high quality in terms of originality, significance and rigour.  
  • To develop clear plans for the pursuit of national and international funding opportunities to support research and end-user engagement. 
  • To play a role in relevant teaching and research supervision, and contribute to ongoing curriculum development. 
  • Contribute to enhancing the quality of the research environment in the Department, the wider University and beyond through collaborative research activity. 
  • Demonstrate a willingness to contribute to the administrative work, citizenship and values of the Department.  
  • To deliver lectures, seminars and tutorials at undergraduate and taught postgraduate levels, as well as engaging in related activity such as assessment.
  • To fully engage in and enhance the values of the Department.
  • To contribute to attracting and supervising research students, and to enhance the Department’s commitment to its vibrant and inclusive postgraduate culture.  
  • Carry out other duties as specified by the Head of Department. 

Durham University is committed to equality, diversity and inclusion 

Equality, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) are a key component of the University’s Strategy and a central part of everything we do.  We also live by our Purpose and Values  and our Staff Code of Conduct.   At Durham we actively work towards providing an environment where our staff and students can study, work and live in a community which is supportive and inclusive. It’s important to us that all colleagues undertake activities that are aligned to both our values and commitment to EDI. 

We welcome and encourage applications from those who are currently under-represented in our work force, including people with disabilities and from racially minoritised ethnic groups.

If you have taken a career break or periods of leave that may have impacted on the volume and recency of your research outputs and other activities, such as maternity, adoption or parental leave, you may wish to disclose this in your application. The selection committee will take this into account when evaluating your application.

The University has been awarded the Disability Confident Employer status. If you are a candidate with a disability, we are committed to ensuring fair treatment throughout the recruitment process. We will make adjustments to support the interview process wherever it is reasonable to do so and, where successful, reasonable adjustments will be made to support people within their role. 


Person Specification

Candidates will have completed their PhD (or be close to completion) and should outline their experience, skills and achievements to date, which demonstrate that they meet the essential criteria.

Research  

Candidates must have the capacity for and be progressing towards the independent development of internationally excellent research that produces high-quality outcomes, including some work that is recognised as world-class or that has world-class potential.   

Essential Research Criteria

  • Qualifications –- a good first degree and a PhD (or close to completion at the time of application) in Sociology or a related subject.
  • Outputs – evidence of high-quality outputs, some of which is recognised as internationally excellent or world-class. Candidates are asked to submit two research papers with their application (as outlined in the How to Apply section below).  Candidates may additionally choose to submit evidence such as external peer review of their outputs.     
  •  Personal Research Plan-evidence of a personal research plan which should be a maximum of 2 pages and should outline your research objectives which supports and enhances the research theme violence and abuse Violence and Abuse - Durham University
  • Education 

    Candidates must demonstrate the development and delivery of high-quality teaching that contributes to providing a supportive and enabling learning environment and curricula which encourage students to achieve their potential.

    Essential Education Criteria 

  • Quality – evidence of the development and delivery of effective and engaging teaching. (Candidates may choose to provide student evaluation scores and/or peer reviews of teaching). 
  • Innovation – experience, skills and/or achievements that demonstrate your contribution to new programme development and innovation in the design and delivery of high-quality teaching and assessment of learning. This can include lectures, small group learning and/or using technology or other techniques to enhance learning and/or assessment.
  • Strategic – evidence of strategic teaching development, or achievements that demonstrate the potential to engage in the design of excellent teaching programmes which are research informed and led. 
  • Services, Citizenship and Values

    Active engagement in administrative and citizenship requirements and to fostering a respectful environment, including a demonstrable commitment to equality, diversity, and inclusion.

    Essential Services, Citizenship and Values Criteria

  • Citizenship contribution – evidence of participation in the citizenship/administrative activities of an academic Department, Faculty or University. (Candidates may choose to evidence departmental or University roles, mentoring activity, pastoral and academic support of students, engagement with widening participation, carrying out departmental and interdepartmental activities effectively. Being involved in departmental activities such as open days, employability events, departmental meetings and committees. Involvement in equality and diversity initiatives and membership or engagement with external bodies).  
  • Leadership – experience, skills and/or achievements that demonstrate engagement in activities that contribute to the administrative functioning of an academic Department, Faculty, University and/or discipline, including leadership or responsibilities in an academic context. (Candidates may choose to detail any leadership roles which they have undertaken, preferably in, but not limited to, an academic context). 
  • Communication – candidates must have excellent oral and written communication skills with the ability to engage with a range of students and colleagues across a variety of forums.  
  • Desirable Criteria 

    The desirable criteria for this post (for which candidates should provide evidence of some if not all criteria) are: 

  • Qualification – candidates to hold or have the ability to attain the rank of Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (https://www.heacademy.ac.uk/individuals/fellowship/fellow ), which is the national body that champions teaching excellence (or Equivalent).   
  • Research Leadership – experience, skills and/or achievements that demonstrate experience of, or the potential to, contribute to the leadership of research groups and mentoring of early career researchers. (Candidates may choose to include information about research group leadership, mentoring of research colleagues, invitations to external events, engagement with international networks or projects).   
  • PhD Supervision – involvement in the provision of excellent supervision for PhD students.    
  • Research Impact – evidence of or the potential to demonstrate the impact of the Candidate’s research beyond their institution.     
  • Income Generation – evidence of engagement in the development of successful research projects and quality research grant proposals.   
  • Contact Information 

    Department contact for academic-related enquiries 

     Professor Catherine Donovan, Head of Department, [email protected]

    Contact information for technical difficulties when submitting your application 

    If you encounter technical difficulties when using the online application form, we prefer you send enquiries by email.  Please send your name along with a brief description of the problem you’re experiencing to [email protected]  

    Alternatively, you may call 0191 334 6801 from the UK, or +44 191 334 6801 from outside the UK. This number operates during the hours of 09.00 and 17.00 Monday to Friday, UK time.  We will normally respond within one working day (Monday to Friday, excluding UK public holidays).  

    University contact for general queries about the recruitment process 

    Lauren Gulliver- Recruitment Coordinator [email protected] 

    How to Apply  

    We prefer to receive applications online.    

    Please note that in submitting your application, we will be processing your data.  We would ask you to consider the relevant University Privacy Statement https://www.dur.ac.uk/ig/dp/privacy/pnjobapplicants/  which provides information on the collation, storing and use of data.  

    What to Submit 

    All applicants are asked to submit: 

    • A CV  
    • A covering letter which details your experience, strengths and potential in the requirements set out above. 
    • Personal research plan maximum two pages. 
    • Two of your most significant pieces of written work.  Where possible your written work should have been published or submitted since 2020, however work prior to 2020 may be submitted where candidates have had career breaks. 
    • An EDI & values statement – (of no more than 500 words) which outlines work which you have been involved in which demonstrates your commitment to EDI and our values. I.e. Involvement in equality, diversity, and inclusion activities such as mentoring, volunteering, or attending conferences.

     

    Where possible we request that you provide accessible web links to your publications, which the hiring Department will use to access your work. The application form contains fields in which to enter each of the web links.

    Please note we are unable to access publications behind a paywall.  

    In the event you are unable to provide accessible links to online hosting of your work, publications should be uploaded as PDFs as part of your application in our recruitment system.

    Please ensure that your PDFs are not larger than 5mb. Your work may be read by colleagues from across the Department and evaluated against the current REF criteria. 

    All application documents should be uploaded with your name and document type as PDF files. 

    We will notify you on the status of your application at various points throughout the selection process, via automated emails from our e-recruitment system.  Please check your spam/junk folder periodically to ensure you receive all emails.  

    Referees 

    You should provide 3 academic referees they should not (if possible) include your PhD supervisor(s).  The majority should be from a university other than your own.

    References will be requested for candidates who have been shortlisted and will be made available to the panel during the interview process. 

    As part of your application, you will be asked whether you give your consent to your academic references being sought should you be invited to attend an interview. We will only request references where permission has been granted.  

    Next Steps 

    All applications will be considered; our usual practice is for colleagues across the Department to read the submitted work of long-listed candidates.   

    Short-listed candidates will be invited to the University, either virtually or in-person and will have the opportunity to meet key members of the Department.  The assessment for the post will normally include include two presentations, one on research to staff and one on education/teaching to students, followed by and interview and we anticipate that the assessments and interviews will take place over two days in or around week beginning April 21st 2024

    If you are unable to attend on the date offered, it may not be possible to offer you an interview on an alternative date. 

    Applicant Guidance  

    For further guidance on your application please see HERE  



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