Postdoctoral Research Associate (SME Scaling with a Purpose) (
Faculty of Business
Grade 7: - £37,099 - £44,263 per annum
Fixed Term - Full Time
Contract Duration: 2 years
Contracted Hours per Week: 35
: 17-Dec-2023, 6:59:00 PM
Disclosure and Barring Service Requirement: Not Applicable.
Job Title: Postdoctoral Research Associate (SME Scaling with a Purpose)
Department: Durham University Business School
Grade: Grade 7
Salary range: £37,099 - £44,263 per annum
Working arrangements: This is a full time role, consisting of 35 hours per week.
Closing date: 17th December 2023
A globally outstanding centre of teaching and research excellence, a collegiate community of extraordinary people, 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 while enjoying a high-quality work/life balance. We are home to some of the most talented scholars and researchers from around the world who 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.
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 University Strategy
Our Purpose and Values
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 Role and Department
Dynamic and vibrant, Durham University Business School is one of Durham University’s four Faculties and is comprised of three research-intensive departments: Accounting, Economics and Finance, and Management and Marketing. Known for its global reputation, its impact on policy and practice and its strong focus on ethics, responsibility and sustainability, the school aims to be a leading European business school with a strong global presence by 2027. The school currently has 180 academic and teaching staff, with plans and resource commitments to grow to 230 by 2027. In addition, 11 funded research centres (https://www.dur.ac.uk/business/research/research-centres/ ) blend leading theoretical perspectives with a strong emphasis on impact and engagement with practice, noted in www.durham.ac.uk/business . The school’s student population is around 4000, across undergraduate, postgraduate and research programmes.
Our vision is to lead business thought and practice to improve global wealth and well-being. Our associated mission is to create, share and use knowledge to deliver equitable and sustainable futures around the world. We pursue this mission by advancing world-changing knowledge and securing global impact through increasingly collaborative research across disciplines and around the world.
Our department is part of the triple-accredited Business School, home to academics whose research is internationally renowned for intellectual rigour and for the benefits it brings to the society. We work closely with business partners around the world, sharing insights, supporting innovation, and educating tomorrow’s leaders. More details about our research, teaching, and business connections can be found on our website https://www.durham.ac.uk/business/research/ .
Applications are invited for a Postdoctoral Research Associate to support the Scale with a Purpose (SwaP) research project. SwaP aims to support the ecosystem of purpose-led SMEs in the North-East of England. You will work alongside local purpose-led organisations to help develop training initiatives designed to inspire, initiate, and scale their activities. Specifically, you will work closely with industry collaborators on the project to help develop, pilot, and launch professional qualifications for purpose-led organisations in the North-East of England (e.g., social enterprises, charities and/or commercial SMEs). This will involve bringing your expertise into the role to help shape the underlying research agenda and how it translates into real world impact.
The successful applicant will work alongside the project PI, Prof Jonathan Kimmitt, and the project partner as well as the rest of the academic project team. The role is funded by Durham University Business School’s Smart & Scale initiative which is an interdisciplinary impact-driven research programme in smart and scale-up activities, focusing on innovation and business development of SMEs in the North-East of England.
- To work with the Principal Investigator and other colleagues in the research project, as appropriate, to develop, pilot and launch the collaborative training initiative whilst, developing new research and extending the research portfolio.
- To assist with the development of research objectives and proposals.
- To conduct individual and collaborative research projects under the direction of the Principal Investigator
- To facilitate publishing high quality outputs, including papers for submission to peer reviewed journals and papers for presentation at conferences and workshops under the direction of the Principal Investigator or Grant-holder.
- To deal with problems that may affect the achievement of research objectives and deadlines by discussing with the Principal Investigator and other colleagues in the research project and offering creative or innovative solutions.
- To prepare and deliver presentations on research outputs/activities to audiences which may include research sponsors, academic and non-academic audiences.
- To liaise with research colleagues and make internal and external contacts to develop knowledge and understanding to form relationships for future research collaboration.
- To plan and manage own research activity, research resources in collaboration with others and contribute to the planning of research projects.
- To contribute to fostering a collegial and respectful working environment which is inclusive and welcoming and where everyone is treated fairly with dignity and respect.
- To engage in wider citizenship to support the department and wider discipline.
- To engage in continuing professional development by participation in the undergraduate or postgraduate teaching programmes or by membership of departmental committees, etc. and by attending relevant training and development courses.
This post is fixed term for 24 months and may not be extendible for a further length of time depending on the term of Professor Kimmitt and the research contract.
The post-holder is employed to work on research/a research project which will be led by another colleague. Whilst this means that the post-holder will not be carrying out independent research in his/her own right, the expectation is that they will contribute to the advancement of the project, through the development of their own research ideas/adaptation and development of research protocols.
Successful applicants will, ideally, be in post by March 2024.
Working at Durham
A competitive salary is only one part of the many fantastic benefits you will receive if you join the University: you will also receive access to the following fantastic benefits:
• 30 Days annual leave per year in addition to 8 public holidays and 4 customary days per year – a total of 42 days per year.
• The University closes between Christmas and New Year – please include or delete if not applicable.
• We offer a generous pension scheme, As a new member of staff you will be automatically enrolled into the University Superannuation Scheme (USS).
• No matter how you travel to work, we have you covered. We have parking across campus, a cycle to work scheme which helps you to buy a bike and discount with local bus and train companies.
• There is a genuine commitment to developing our colleagues professionally and personally. There is a comprehensive range of development courses, apprenticeships and access to qualifications and routes to develop your career in the University. All staff have dedicated annual time to concentrate on their personal development opportunities.
• Lots of support for health and wellbeing including discounted membership for our state of the art sport and gym facilities and access to a 24-7 Employee Assistance Programme.
• On site nursery is available and children’s clubs in the summer holidays.
• Family friendly policies, including maternity and adoption leave, which are among the most generous in the higher education sector (and likely above and beyond many employers).
• The opportunity to take part in staff volunteering activities to make a difference in the local community
• Discounts are available via our benefits portal including; money off at supermarkets, high street retailers, IT products such as Apple, the cinema and days out at various attractions.
• A salary sacrifice scheme is also available to help you take advantage of tax savings on benefits.
• If you are moving to Durham, we can help with removal costs and we have a dedicated team who can help you with the practicalities such as house hunting and schools. If you need a visa, we cover most visa costs and offer an interest free loan scheme to pay for dependant visas.
Durham University is committed to equality, diversity and inclusion
Our collective aim is to create an open and inclusive environment where everyone can reach their full potential and we believe our staff should reflect the diversity of the global community in which we work.
As a University equality, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) are a key part of the University’s Strategy and a central part of everything we do. We also live by our 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 of our colleagues are aligned to both our values and commitment to EDI.
We welcome and encourage applications from members of groups who are under-represented in our work force including people with disabilities and people from racially minoritised ethnic groups.
We are committed to equality: if for any reason you have taken a career break or periods of leave that may have impacted on the volume and recency of research outputs, such as maternity, adoption or parental leave, you may wish to disclose this in your application. We also understand that the Covid-19 pandemic will have had differential impacts on different people and welcome information on this if you wish to share it. The selection committee will recognise that this may have reduced the quantity of your research accordingly
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.
Department contact for academic-related enquiries
For informal enquiries please contact Prof Jonathan Kimmitt. All enquiries will be treated in the strictest confidence: [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
HR WILL POPULATE
How to Apply
To progress to the assessment stage, candidates must evidence each of the essential criteria required for the role in the person specification below. It will be at the discretion of the recruiting panel as to whether they will also consider any desirable criteria, but we would urge candidates to provide evidence for all criteria.
While some criteria will be considered at the shortlisting stage, other criteria may be considered later in the assessment process, such as questions at interview.
Submitting your application
We prefer to receive applications online. We will update you about 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 make sure you have not missed any of our updates.
What to Submit
All applicants are asked to submit:
A CV and
A maximum two-page cover letter which details your experience, strengths, and potential to meet the essential and, if appropriate, desirable criteria listed above.
Shortlisted candidates will be invited for interview on a date to be confirmed.
In the event that you are unable to attend in person on the date offered, it may not be possible to offer you an interview on an alternative date.
Please note that in submitting your application Durham University will be processing your data. We would ask you to consider the relevant University Privacy Statement https://www.durham.ac.uk/about-us/governance/information-governance/privacy-notices/privacy-notices/job-applicants/ which provides information on the collation, storing and use of data.
When appointing to this role the University must ensure that it meets any applicable immigration requirements, including salary thresholds which are applicable to some visas.
- A good first degree in relevant subject.
- A PhD (or be close to submission) in Entrepreneurship or similar relevant subject (e.g., small business management)
- Experience in conducting high quality academic research.
- Collaborative working with industry and business
- Experience of developing research for industry and business
- Knowledge of small business and entrepreneurship
- Demonstrable ability to work cooperatively as part of a team, including participating in research meetings.
- Ability to work independently on own initiative and to strict deadlines.
- Excellent interpersonal and communication skills.
- Experience of developing high quality impactful research through collaborative projects with industry, particularly purpose-led organizations (e.g., social enterprises, non-profits)
- Have experience of publication record in peer-reviewed journal/established conferences, commensurate with stage of career.
- A track record of communicating research at academic conferences, symposia, or meetings, commensurate with stage of career.
- Demonstrable ability to develop research proposals and designs in collaboration with other academics.
- Experience in working in complex project environment with multiple partners
- Knowledge of purpose led organizations (e.g., social enterprises, non-profits)
- Knowledge of trends and dynamics of North-East SMEs, particular purpose led organizations.
- Demonstrable ability to plan and manage independent research.
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