Two fully-funded PhD studentship opportunities: (1) labour market intelligence and machine learning; (2) gendered career choices

Merchiston Tower spring

The successful candidates will be based at Edinburgh Napier University’s Merchiston campus

Applications are invited for two fully-funded PhD studentships within the Centre for Social Informatics at Edinburgh Napier University. These are:

  1. Enhancing labour market intelligence using machine learning to be supervised by Dr David Brazier, Dr Dimitra Gkatzia, Dr Matthew Dutton, and Alistair Lawson
  2. Gendered information landscapes and their impact on routes into, and through, apprenticeships to be supervised by Dr Ella Taylor-Smith, Professor Sally Smith, and Dr Colin Smith

The studentships are both ESCR/Skills Development Scotland (SDS) Collaborative awards. They are offered through the Science, Technology and Innovation Studies and Information and Communication Studies pathway of the Scottish Graduate School of Social Science (SGSSS).

The Centre for Social Informatics has a strong track record of supporting ESRC/SDS-funded PhD students. We have four students currently on the programme, and two recent graduates: Dr John Mowbray 2018 – now a Research Officer at the Scottish Government; Dr Lyndsey Middleton 2020 – now an Assistant Statistician, also at the Scottish Government.

The recruitment timetable for both studentships is as follows:

  • Applications are due by Wednesday 31st March 2021
  • Interviews are scheduled for Tuesday 20th April 2021 (online)
  • The studentship will start in October 2021
    • As a three year programme, if the appointed student(s) already hold(s) a Masters degree with at least 60 credits of research methods training
    • As a 1+3 four year programme, if the appointed student(s) do(es) not already hold a Masters degree with at least 60 credits of research methods training, with an MSc(R) undertaken as the first year, followed by three years of doctoral study

The studentships can be taken full-time or part-time, and international students are eligible to apply. For full details including the application process, please see the advertisements on the SGSSS web site:

  1. Enhancing labour market intelligence using machine learning
  2. Gendered information landscapes and their impact on routes into and through apprenticeships

Prospective applicants are also welcome to contact the Director of Studies of the studentships with enquiries about these two opportunities:

  1. Dr David Brazier: d.brazier@napier.ac.uk
  2. Dr Ella Taylor-Smith: e.taylor-smith@napier.ac.uk

ESRC-SDS-Napier studentship logos

Katherine Stephen and Marina Milosheva contribute to CDI Student Conference Scotland 2021 #CDIScotConf

CDI, Napier UWS, SDS, bannerThe 2021 Career Development Institute Student Conference Scotland takes place (online) today. Organised collaboratively by the Career Development Institute, Edinburgh Napier University, University of the West of Scotland, and Skills Development Scotland (SDS), the conference theme is ‘Responding to COVID-19: changing labour markets, changing practice’. The Conference Chair is Dr Pete Robertson of Edinburgh Napier University. Continue reading

Centre for Social Informatics staff contribute to new paper on the study of workplace information literacy

Peter Cruickshank Bruce Ryan

Peter Cruickshank and Dr Bruce Ryan

My Centre for Social Informatics colleagues Dr Bruce Ryan and Peter Cruickshank have recently contributed to new paper on methods for studying workplace information literacy. The manuscript is now available as a pdf download from the Edinburgh Napier repository.

Entitled ‘Workplace information literacy: measures and methodological challenges’, the work on the paper was led by Professor Gunilla Widén of the Faculty of Social Sciences, Business and Economics, Information Studies at Åbo Akademi University. The other co-authors are Gunilla’s former colleague Dr Farhan Ahmad (now at the University of Turku) and Dr Shahrokh Nikou, who works alongside Gunilla at Åbo. Continue reading

Risks of disclosing personal information online: new paper by Dr David Haynes (Napier) and Dr Lyn Robinson (City)

Congratulations to my Centre for Social Informatics colleague Dr David Haynes and his co-author Dr Lyn Robinson of City University on the ‘online first’ publication of their paper ‘Delphi study of risk to individuals who disclose personal information online’. In their paper, the authors identify four priority areas for research into personal online risk: (1) personalisation versus privacy; (2) responsibility for privacy on social networks; (3) measuring privacy risk, and (4) perceptions of powerlessness and resulting apathy. Continue reading

RIVAL network members gather (online) for event 4

RIVAL logoToday the members of the Royal Society of Edinburgh-funded RIVAL network are meeting formally for the penultimate time at part 1 of RIVAL Event 4. As has been the case for so many professional activities since mid-March 2020, Dr Bruce Ryan, Rachel Salzano, Katherine Stephen and I are not hosting this event as originally envisaged. Rather than gathering face-to-face, at Edinburgh Napier University’s Sighthill campus for a full day on July 9th 2020, the RIVAL network members will be logging onto Teams for two half day meetings, the first of which is this afternoon, with the second on the morning of Friday 12th February. Continue reading

Registration opens for ‘digital proxies’ workshop for information workers

We can help youAre you an information worker who supports citizens in their use online systems by accessing digital services on their behalf as their ‘digital proxy’? Perhaps this kind of activity has become part of your role working in local government, a public library service, civil society, and/or a third sector organisation?

If so, my Centre for Social Informatics colleagues Dr Gemma WebsterDr David BrazierPeter Cruickshank and Dr Bruce Ryan would like to invite you to participate at one of three free half-day online workshops next month. Continue reading

Farewell 2020

Social Informatcis staff and students all centre meeting December 2019

The way we were, December 2019. L to R: John Marshall, Peter Cruickshank, Lyndsey Middleton (now graduated with PhD), Katherine Stephen, Rachel Salzano, Marina Milosheva, Laura Muir (now retired), Hazel Hall, Leo Appleton (now graduated with PhD), Ella Taylor-Smith, David Haynes, David Brazier, Frances Ryan (now Research Fellow at the University of Aberdeen), Colin Smith, Wegene Demeke, and Bruce Ryan.

Just over a year ago, on 22nd December 2019, I summarised the the previous six months of activities of the members of the Centre for Social Informatics. I illustrated this account with a jolly photograph of us all bunched closely together around the table a few days earlier in room C34a of Edinburgh Napier University’s Merchiston campus. Continue reading

Information Research December 2020 issue available with six contributions from the Centre for Social Informatics

Information Research logoThe December 2020 issue of Information Research is now available. Alongside the ‘regular’ papers and book reviews, this issue incorporates all the papers and posters from the Information Seeking in Context (ISIC) conference hosted online by the Department of Information Science, University of Pretoria, South Africa in September. Continue reading

iConference acceptances for Marina Milosheva and Rachel Salzano #iConf2021

Last week two of our Centre for Social Informatics PhD students learnt that they will be contributing to iConference 2021. Continue reading

Research group highlights of 2020, and hopes for 2021

This time last year on 18th December 2019, following our usual tradition, the Centre for Social Informatics staff and students marked the end of the year with an ‘All centre’ celebration of their achievements of the previous six months. This kind of get-together is completely impossible under the current pandemic restrictions. So, instead of the usual hilarity in room C34a of Napier’s Merchiston campus, during which I use my enormous egg timer to time five minute updates from everyone around the table over the course of two hours (glass of wine in hand), yesterday afternoon we gathered online for just 30 minutes of social fun. Continue reading