Posted: Friday, March 31st, 2017
The Institute of Ethics at Dublin City University is seeking a postdoctoral researcher for a 4-year fixed-term contract to work on the EnTIRE project and do research on issues of Research Ethics and Research Integrity (RE+RI).
Research Centre: Institute of Ethics, Dublin City University, Ireland
Post title: Post-Doctoral Researcher EnTIRE project
Level on Framework: Level 2
Post duration: Fixed term contract up to 48 months
Salary: *€35,488 - €46,255
*Appointment will be commensurate with qualifications and experience, and will be made on the appropriate point of the salary scales, in line with current Government pay policy.
Closing date for applications: 15 April 2017
Applicants should have:
• PhD in Ethics, STS, Social Science or a related discipline
• Expertise on issues of Research Ethics and Research Integrity (RE+RI)
(as evidenced through PhD and/or publications)
• Excellent social and communicative skills
• Excellent English
The EnTIRE project is funded under Horizon 2020; Call: H2020-SwafS-2016-17 (Science with and for Society).
The changing scientific environment puts researchers under more and more pressure: publication pressure, reducing research funds, public pressure to justify spending public research budgets and promotion of public-private partnerships. Together these external factors can ultimately lead to a research environment where ethical norms may lose out to other norms and so-called questionable research practices arise.
In response to these changing research environments, the areas of Research Ethics and Research Integrity (RE+RI) are rapidly evolving. In many European countries, regions and institutions guidelines, standards, laws have been drafted. However, the effect can be the opposite: because of the resulting diversity and continuously changing norms, researchers lack up-to-date and easily accessible information on relevant rules and regulations as well as on how to apply them. The same is true for RE+RI evaluation committees that are hindered by the absence of easy access to cases and practices elsewhere. RE+RI leaders and followers lack a platform that provides easy access to RE+RI norms, and serves as a basis for deliberation, fostering improvement and practical relevance of these norms.
The overall aim of the EnTIRE project is to create a platform that makes the normative framework governing RE+RI easily accessible, supports application in research and evaluation, and involves all stakeholders in a participatory way, thus achieving sustainability. The platform will foster uptake of ethical standards and responsible conduct of research, and ultimately support research excellence and strengthen society’s confidence in research and its findings.
To achieve its overall aim, the EnTIRE project will address the following objectives:
• Objective 1: To undertake an in-depth stakeholder consultation across EU countries exploring RE+RI experiences and practices, defining the boundaries of data to be collected, and developing a mapping structure adapted to user needs (work package (WP) 2)
• Objective 2: To assemble the relevant normative elements, including RE+RI rules and procedures, educational materials, illustrative cases, and relevant institutions across EU countries (WP 3-5)
• Objective 3: To develop a user-friendly platform, including a website and online resources, to facilitate access to RE+RI knowledge and experience, and support application in research and evaluation, thus fostering uptake of ethical standards and responsible conduct of research (WP 6)
The key tasks of the postdoctoral researcher:
• Coordinate the research in WP5 of the EnTIRE Project: “Cases, casuistry and scenarios” (see below)
• Publish papers on RE+RI in international peer reviewed journals
• Act as a co-supervisor of a PhD student who is also working on the EnTIRE project
Principal Duties and Responsibilities within the EnTIRE project:
As coordinator of WP5, “Cases, casuistry and scenarios”, the postdoctoral researcher will organize the work of a multinational, multidisciplinary team of researchers. The work on WP5 will be done in collaboration and based on an agreed upon division of work with the DCU EnTIRE PhD student and other international project partners. The postdoctoral researcher will report to the DCU principal investigator on the EnTIRE project, professor Bert Gordijn. He/She will be responsible for coordinating the work in WP5, which includes more specifically the following tasks:
• Identify potential sources of RE+RI cases, for example, a) academic literature; b) reports by RE+RI committees and regulatory bodies; c) grey literature such as government documents, white papers, theses and dissertations, conference proceedings and policy statements; d) media outlets such as newspapers and magazines; and e) the blogosphere.
• Develop appropriate systematic methods to conduct searches within these sources so as to gather RE+RI cases, e.g. through a systematic literature review.
• Develop a system of categories, a ‘thesaurus’, for tagging cases that enhances retrievability and orientation within the EnTIRE database. Tagging methods will involve traditional approaches, e.g. tagging according to issues such as misconduct, falsification, fabrication, plagiarism, fake peer-review, data management, as well as innovative methods, for example tagging according to the main ethical principles from the RE+RI normative framework that have been violated.
• Conduct pilot searches in Ireland, Hungary and the UK within each of the potential pools of RE+RI cases to see whether the initially chosen search methodologies are adequate and feasible. Make adjustments, if necessary.
• Conduct structuring, posting and testing activities on the web platform.
• Adjust the system of tagging based on the results of the pilot searches and the normative framework defined in the focus groups (WP2).
• Conduct full-scale systematic searches for RE+RI cases.
• Add the RE+RI cases that have resulted from the face to face and the online focus groups sessions
• Conduct a systematic literature review to identify case analysis methods suitable for the analysis of RE+RI cases.
• Analyse a set of particularly prominent and/or topical RE+RI cases showcasing relevant case analysis methods.
• Develop a set of RE+RI scenarios for educational purposes and in order to stimulate strategic thinking about RE+RI.
• Iteratively assess the usability, interactivity and sustainability of the platform developed in WP 6 with regard to collected cases and scenarios.
Dublin City University:
DCU is a young, dynamic and ambitious university with a distinctive mission to transform lives and societies through education, research and innovation. DCU is recognised nationally and internationally as a centre of academic excellence with over 16,000 students.
Institute of Ethics:
The Institute was established in September 2008 with the mission to create ethical awareness in relation to all fields of the university´s activities and to play a leading role in raising public awareness of, and stimulating debate about, ethical issues. The DCU Institute of Ethics engages in high quality research, teaching and services. The Institute promotes a systematic approach to applied ethics in the fields of government, business, media, science, technology and health care. It is engaged in a variety of international funded research projects (see research portfolio).
Research Careers Framework:
As part of this role the postdoc researcher will participate in the DCU Research Career Framework
This framework is designed to provide significant professional development opportunities to Researchers and offer the best opportunities in terms of a wider career path.
Candidates will be assessed on the following competencies:
Discipline knowledge and Research skills – Demonstrates knowledge of a research discipline and the ability to conduct a specific programme of research within that discipline and in collaboration with industry partners.
Understanding the Research Environment – Demonstrates an awareness of the research environment (for example funding bodies and key industry players) and the ability to contribute to grant applications
Communicating Research – Demonstrates the ability to communicate their research with their peers, with industry partners, and with the wider research community (for example presenting at conferences and publishing research in relevant journals) and the potential to teach and tutor students
Managing & Leadership skills - Demonstrates the potential to manage a research project including the supervision of undergraduate students and to meet industry partner expectations regarding project turn-around times.
Application forms are available from the DCU Current Vacancies (open Competitions) website at
and also from the Human Resources Department, Dublin City University, Dublin 9 (Tel: +353 (0) 1 7005149).
Please clearly state the role that you are applying for in your application and email subject line: Job Ref #514 Post-Doctoral Researcher on the EnTIRE project
Applications should be submitted
• by email to email@example.com
• or by post to Human Resources Department, Dublin City University, Dublin 9
Informal Queries to Bert Gordijn: firstname.lastname@example.org
Dublin City University is an equal opportunities employer.