From PhD to the workplace: job destinations of doctoral students

Alicja Pawluczuk, Lyndsey Middleton, Dr John Mowbray, Lynn Killick, and Frances Ryan

Alicja Pawluczuk, Lyndsey Middleton, Dr John Mowbray, Lynn Killick, and Frances Ryan

Over the past six months four of the doctoral students within the Centre for Social Informatics who have recently completed, or are close to completion, of their PhDs have already embarked on their post-PhD careers.

The first current student to enter the job market was Lyndsey Middleton. Lyndsey actually secured her post almost a year ago in May 2018 following her paid SGSSS internship with the Scottish Government in the Health and Social Care Integration directorate within eHealth: Policy & Strategy. When Lyndsey started her new role in November 2018 she dropped to part-time hours to complete her PhD, and is currently on target to submit in summer 2019. Lyndsey now works as an Assistant Statistician in the Housing Statistics Team within the Housing and Social Justice Directorate of the Scottish Government. Her role involves the collection of housing related data and information from local authorities across Scotland, then collating and comparing these with data and information from other sources. Lyndsey also supports the analysis of housing statistics, as well as the presentation of the findings. In addition, Lyndsey’s work involves stakeholder engagement with the local authorities across Scotland that provide the raw housing data, as well as end users of the statistical sources that her team produces.

In January 2019 Frances Ryan, who submitted her PhD thesis at the end of October 2018, took up the role of part-time postdoc researcher on a Carnegie Research Incentive Grant, which she was awarded with our colleague Dr Gemma Webster in summer 2018. Frances is involved in all aspects of the project entitled Social media by proxy: strategies for managing the online profiles of adults with dementia, from research design to the reporting of the findings. Today, Frances starts a second part-time postdoc post on the TAPESTRY project with Professor Wendy Moncur and other members of the Digital Living group at the University of Dundee. Meanwhile Frances is working on the minor corrections to her PhD thesis, as requested by her examiners at her viva on 28th February, and expects to collect her PhD certificate at the Edinburgh Napier University graduation ceremony on 4th July 2019.

The third Centre for Social Informatics doctoral student to recently take on paid employment while completing her thesis write-up is Lynn Killick. In February 2019 Lynn started a part-time role with the Scottish Funding Council as a Senior Policy Analyst. The main focus of her job is to advance equality in the university and college sectors in Scotland. Like Lyndsey Middleton, Lynn plans to submit her PhD thesis in summer 2019.

Alicja Pawluczuk is also hoping to submit her thesis around the same time as Lyndsey Middleton and Lynn Killick. She has been employed part-time by the Department of Communication and Media at the University of Liverpool since March 2019. Here she is a Research Associate on a Nuffield Foundation project entitled Me and my big data.  Alongside Professor Simeon Yates, Dr Elinor Carmi, and Dr Tamara West, Alicja‘s work on this project is focused on an examination of citizen data literacy skills across the UK with the objective of producing (a) digital literacy training materials for schools, third-sector, and universities and (b) policy recommendations on data literacy education in the UK.

Meanwhile our most recent PhD graduate Dr John Mowbray, who collected his PhD certificate in November 2018, is already settling into his second post-PhD job role. Like the others noted above, John took up his first post just before he completed his doctoral studies. This was as an Information Analyst within NHS National Services Scotland. John held this role for just over a year from January 2018 before moving to Glasgow. He is now a Research Associate within the School of Social and Political Sciences at Glasgow University, working on a project entitled Quantitative network analysis of appointment diaries.

The successes of Lyndsey, Frances, Lynn, Alicja, and John as noted above demonstrate the value of doctoral study as preparation for the job market, and are testament to the calibre of the PhD students within the Centre for Social Informatics at Edinburgh Napier University.

Fully-funded PhD opportunity: work-based learning, skills, and economic performance

ESRC-SDS-Napier studentship logos

We are readvertising a fully-funded PhD place within the Centre for Social Informatics at Edinburgh Napier University for an October 2019 start date. Continue reading

Register now for RIVAL event 1: Thursday 11th July, Edinburgh

RIVAL logoRegistration is now open for the first RIVAL event on Thursday 11th July 2019 in the Horizon Suite at at Edinburgh Napier University’s Sighthill campus. Participation is free of charge for Scotland-based members of the library and information science practitioner and research communities interested in maximising the impact and value of library and information science research. Continue reading

Centre for Social Informatics – new flyer

Centre for Social Informatics banner We have a newly updated Centre for Social Informatics flyer for spring 2019. Please follow the link to read about the work of our group, including details of research expertise, funders, recent PhD completions, and recent publications. The flyer includes profiles of the academic and research staff within our group: Continue reading

#EBLIP10, Glasgow, June 2019: programme available and registration open

Dr Bruce Ryan

Dr Bruce Ryan

The full draft programme for the 10th International Evidence Based Library and Information Practice Conference (EBLIP10), which takes place in Glasgow between 17th and 19th June 2019, is now available on the conference web site.

This includes details of conference keynotes: David Stewart, President of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals; Donna Scheeder Past President of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions and of the Special Libraries Association; and Frankie Wilson, Head of Assessment at the Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford. Continue reading

Newly published: ‘Digital youth work: the youth worker’s balancing act between digital innovation and digital literacy insecurities’

Information Research logoAmongst the papers from Information Seeking in Context (ISIC) 2018 published in the latest issue of Information Research is an article that I co-authored with my Centre for Social Informatics colleagues Alicja Pawluczuk, Dr Gemma Webster, and Dr Colin Smith.

In the paper we discuss the ways in which UK youth workers perceive their work in the context of digital literacy project facilitation. The findings, which derive from the analysis of data from interviews conducted with twenty digital youth workers, reveal (a) that youth workers are both excited and sceptical about the digital developments in the field, and (b) an anxiety associated with the lack of digital literacy skills in the youth work sector.

The paper is available in full text from the Information Research web site. A PDF of the manuscript can also be downloaded from the Edinburgh Napier University repository.

#ISIC2018 logo

Research Impact and Value in LIS: introducing the RIVAL network

This afternoon I’m speaking at the Edge conference in Edinburgh about a new project, as summarised in the slide below.

RIVAL launch poster We started work on Research Impact and Value and LIS (RIVAL) on 1st February 2019. The Royal Society of Edinburgh has awarded us a grant to create a collaborative network of Scotland-based library and information science (LIS) researchers and library and information professionals interested in maximising the value of LIS research. This work builds on the pilot RIVAL event that we hosted at Edinburgh Napier University on 11th July last year. Continue reading