University of Edinburgh
Server Date/Time: 24-April-2019 13:4
Navigation Section
Search Vacancies Search Vacancies
Log In Log In
Register Register
This will enable you to apply for vacancies and register for vacancy notifications
Job Specification Job Specification
View job specification
Terms & Conditions Terms & Conditions
University of Edinburgh University of Edinburgh

Core Solutions Image
Vacancy Details
Postdoctoral Research Fellow: Mediterranean Islamisms
Vacancy Ref: : 047503 Closing Date : 29-Apr-2019
Contact Person : Professor Frederic Volpi Contact Number :
Contact Email :

Job Details

Job title: Post-Doctoral Research Fellow
School/Unit: LLC – The Alwaleed Centre
Line manager: Director of the Alwaleed Centre

Job Purpose

To provide a two-year fixed-term early career development opportunity for a person recently qualified to PhD level in a relevant subject (i.e. within the last 3 years). The successful candidate will be expected to contribute both to the development of the Centre’s research profile as well as its teaching and outreach initiatives. The successful candidate will design and teach courses in the Department of Islamic & Middle Eastern Studies and/or other relevant departments as appropriate. This research position is designed to work in synergy with the current project on Mediterranean Islamisms let by the Director of the Centre.

Main Responsibilities

The post holder is expected to:

  1. Contribute to the comparative project on Islamisms led by the Director of the Centre (30%)
  2. Undertake research leading to the publication of two articles over the appointment period (30%)
  3. Contribute to the Centre’s management and outreach activities (20%)
  4. Design and teach at least one 20 credit semester-long course per year (15%)
  5. Any other duties as requested by Alwaleed Centre Director (5%)

Planning and Organising

The postholder is expected to:

• contribute to long-term projects, as part of a project team
• conduct fieldwork abroad to gather empirical data for the project
• lead short-term projects such as conferences on a particular theme
• provide assistance with events (locally, nationally and internationally) with minimal supervision

Problem Solving

The postholder is expected to:

• identify gaps in knowledge and searching for sources of information to fill these
• use professional expertise and judgement
• employ diplomacy (including religious, cultural and political sensitivity)
• exercise good judgement of possibilities and risks

Decision Making

The postholder is expected to:

• demonstrate autonomous decision-making in consultation with the Centre’s Director
• have confidence in setting priorities and taking responsibility for decision-making
• provide specialist advice and recommendations to support effective decision-making
• participate in monthly team meetings within the Centre to determine future priorities and activities

Key Contacts/Relationships

• Primarily with the Director of the Centre and the members associated with the Alwaleed Centre
• Academic units across the university
• Media organisations, national and international institutions, religious communities and their leaders
• Other Alwaleed Centres in the UK, the USA, and the Middle East

Knowledge, Skills and Experience Needed for the Job


• A recent PhD on a relevant topic
• Evidence of quality research outputs
• Ability to analyse and interpret empirical data
• Good communication skills
• Good organisational skills
• Good time management skills
• Ability to work in a team
• Ability to work to deadlines
• Ability to prioritise tasks and conflicting deadlines
• Diplomacy, including religious, cultural and political sensitivity
• Evidence of commitment to excellence in teaching


• Experience in explaining research to a wide variety of audiences, both within and beyond a university context.
• Knowledge of a relevant language (e.g. Arabic, Turkish, etc.)
• Experience of working with the media
• Experience in designing material for websites


The postholder will be a member of the Alwaleed Centre team, of 6 colleagues, consisting of the Director; Deputy Director, General Manager; Outreach Coordinator; Centre Lecturer and Post-Doctoral Fellow.

Job Context and any other relevant information

The HRH Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Centre for the Study of Islam in the Contemporary World is a Centre within the University of Edinburgh. The Edinburgh Alwaleed Centre is committed to encouraging a better understanding of Islam and Islamic Culture through ground-breaking research and innovative outreach projects. The Edinburgh Centre is part of a unique network of Centres at prestigious universities around the world; four in the UK and the USA (Edinburgh, Cambridge, Harvard, Georgetown) and two in the Middle East (Cairo and Beirut). For more information visit:

The aim of this post is to provide an early career opportunity for a person recently qualified to PHD level, in a relevant subject. The external funding for this post aims ‘to produce on a self-sustaining basis, a world class cadre of researchers at post-doctoral levels, by providing fellowships designed to feed into the next generation of academics”. For this reason, the post is time-limited to 2 years and an extension will not be possible.

International travel may be expected.

Informal queries are welcome and should be sent via email for the attention of Professor Frederic Volpi, Alwaleed Director, Personal Chair of the Politics of the Muslim World, to

The School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures holds an Athena SWAN Bronze award, in recognition of our commitment to addressing an equalities, diversity and inclusion agenda.

Application Procedure

All applicants should apply online by clicking the apply link at the bottom of this page. The application process is quick and easy to follow, and you will receive email confirmation of safe receipt of your application. The online system allows you to submit a CV and other attachments.

You will be notified by email whether you have been shortlisted for interview or not.

The closing date is 5pm (GMT) on 29th April 2019.

Eligibility to Work
In accordance with the Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006 and Immigration Act 2016 the University of Edinburgh, as an employer, has a legal responsibility to prevent illegal working and therefore must check that all employees are entitled to work in the United Kingdom (UK).
To do so, the University requires to see original documents evidencing right to work in the UK before commencement of employment and this is normally carried out at interview. Details will be provided in any letter of invitation to interview.

For further information on eligibility to work please visit our eligibility to work webpage

If you are from outside the EEA and not currently eligible to work in the UK, there are visa routes that may be available to you, for example:

  • Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent): If you are an academic in the field of sciences; humanities; engineering; medicine; digital technology; or the arts, it may be possible for you to apply for a Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) visa. This route requires you to apply to be endorsed as an internationally recognised leader or emerging leader in your particular field by a designated competent body (Arts Council England, British Academy, Royal Academy of Engineering, Royal Society, Tech City UK). However, if you are applying for a senior academic role, e.g. Professor/Reader there is an accelerated route to endorsement. Further information can be found on the UKVI website

  • Tier 2: The University is a UKVI licensed sponsor and is able to issue a Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) to successful candidates who are offered highly skilled roles and meet the eligibility criteria. The CoS enables candidates to apply for a Tier 2 (general visa).
  • Further information about whether you require a visa and other visa routes can be found at:

    Conditions of Employment

    Pension Scheme

    This role is grade UE07 and therefore the post holder is automatically included in membership of the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS), subject to the USS membership criteria, unless they indicate that they choose not to join the Scheme.

    For further information please visit our Pensions website.


    The role is grade UE07 and attracts an annual salary of £33,199 to £39,609 for 35 hours each week. Salary is paid monthly by direct transfer to your Bank or Building Society account, normally on the 28th of the month. Salaries for part-time staff are calculated on the full-time scales, pro-rata to the Standard Working Week.

    The University reserves the right to vary the candidate information or make no appointment at all. Neither in part, nor in whole does this information form part of any contract between the University and any individual.

    The School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures (LLC)
    LLC is one of the largest schools in the College of Humanities and Social Science and is situated in the heart of the main University of Edinburgh campus, in a number of buildings around George Square. It offers a vibrant and dynamic work environment for colleagues and is committed to excellence in teaching and research across the wide range of cultures and languages it studies.

    The School delivers over half the College’s undergraduate degree programmes. It comprises five subject areas:
    • Asian Studies
    • Celtic and Scottish Studies
    • English Literature
    • European Languages and Cultures
    • Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies
    LLC also has a Graduate School which provides a dynamic and productive home for several hundred postgraduates on taught and research programmes. Our students come from all over the world, and study topics of equally global scope. The Graduate School oversees the administration and delivery of graduate teaching within the five subject areas of the school, and is also responsible for the delivery of innovative transdisciplinary programmes in Film, Media, Translation Studies and Comparative Literature. Situated at the crossroads between teaching and research, it is involved in almost all areas of the school’s activities, so offers a vibrant and stimulating work environment. Full information can be found on the website at:

    LLC also hosts a number of associated research centres - the Princess Dashkova Centre, the Confucius Centre, the Al Waleed Centre and CASAW - which oversee research and which complement the School’s outreach and public engagement initiatives.

    In the 2014 REF over 70% of the research activity in the School was rated world leading or internationally excellent (3* or 4*). We provide an excellent standard of facilities for colleagues in a recently refurbished and new building, at the heart of George Square.
    College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences (
    The College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences is a large and diverse part of the University. Led by Vice-Principal Professor Dorothy Miell, it has 13,800 undergraduates, 5,500 taught postgraduates, 1,300 research students and more than 3,800 academic and professional services staff. The College incorporates 11 Schools (Business; Divinity; Economics; Edinburgh College of Art; Education; Health in Social Sciences; History, Classics and Archaeology; Law; Literatures, Languages and Cultures; Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences; and Social and Political Science), the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities and the Centre for Open Learning. The College is located on multiple sites across Edinburgh, with the majority of Schools and College Offices based close to the central George Square area. The College, which is recognised as one of the world's leading centres for the arts, humanities and social sciences in research and teaching, has been growing and investing strongly in recent years.

    Research Excellence Framework 2014 (REF2014)

    The College operates at the highest levels of international quality across a very wide range of disciplines in the arts, humanities and social sciences and submitted the work of more than 750 staff to 23 Units of Assessment in the Research Excellence Framework 2014. The College achieved a superb result, combining a large-scale, broad and diverse submission with very high quality outcomes: 86% of its research impact and 76% of the overall quality profile were assessed as world-leading (4*) and internationally excellent (3*). Using the widely used Research Power index (which combines the submission's overall score for 3* and 4* work with the volume of staff submitted), 12 of the College’s Units were ranked within the top five in the UK, and 18 were ranked first in Scotland. With an assessment of more than 95% at 3* and 4*, we're particularly proud of the outstanding research environment we create for staff and research students.
    The University of Edinburgh
    For more than four centuries, our people and their achievements have rewritten history time and again. They’ve explored space, revolutionised surgery, published era-defining books, paved the way for life-saving medical breakthroughs and introduced to the world many inventions, discoveries and ideas from penicillin to Dolly the sheep. We have believed that anything is possible, we still do.
    The latest Research Excellence Framework highlighted our place at the forefront of international research. This adds to our international reputation for the quality of our teaching and our student experience excellence. The University is proud of its success with online teaching initiatives, with 2550 students currently studying its online distance learning postgraduate programmes, and a total to date of more than 2 million enrolments for Edinburgh MOOCs.

    As a member of staff, you will be part of one of the world's leading universities, with 20 Schools spread over 3 Colleges that offer more than 1600 undergraduate and 600 postgraduate programmes to over 41,000 students each year. Professional services are critical to this success as well as our world-class teaching, research and student facilities. In fact, we are one of the top employers in Edinburgh, with over 14,500 people spread across a wide range of academic and supporting roles.

    As a world-changing, world-leading university, we offer an exciting, positive, creative, challenging and rewarding place to work. We give you support, nurture your talent, develop and reward success and integrate academic, professional and personal career goals, as well as give your career the benefit of a great and distinguished reputation. In addition, our employees benefit from a competitive reward package and a wide range of staff benefits, which include generous holiday entitlement, a defined benefits pension scheme, staff discounts and much more. Access our staff benefits page for further information and use our reward calculator to find out the total value of pay and benefits provided.

    The University of Edinburgh holds a Silver Athena SWAN award in recognition of our commitment to advance gender equality in higher education. We are members of the Race Equality Charter and we are also Stonewall Scotland Diversity Champions, actively promoting LGBT equality. The University has a range of initiatives to support a family friendly working environment, including flexible working and childcare vouchers. See our University Initiatives website for further information.

    University Family Friendly Initiatives

    Equality Networks:

    Staff Pride Network for LGBT+ colleagues and allies
    Disabled Staff Network

    The University of Edinburgh is a charitable body, registered in Scotland, with registration number SC005336.
    Apply Return to Search