Post-Doctoral Researcher in Place-based planning and Urban Development

School of Geography, Archaeology & Irish Studies

College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies

UrbanLab Galway

Ref. No. NUIG RES 228-22

Applications are invited from suitably qualified candidates for a full time fixed-term position as a post-doctoral researcher with Galway Urban Lab at the National University of Ireland, Galway.

This position is funded by the Horizon Europe IN SITU project and is available from 15 October 2022 to contract end date of 14 April 2025

Job Description:

The successful candidate will be a highly qualified post-doctoral researcher to carry out research and practice in place-based development. You will be part of a team of geographers that are actively involved in the promotion, activation and understanding of place-based development. We recognise the key challenges facing places are varied and wide-ranging and are considering how place-specific responses are addressing them. These issues a varied and wide ranging but often relate to global issues pertaining to climate change, housing, and increased social stratification. We are particularly interested in the role that culture and creativity play in addressing these issues in the context of six regions located on the edge of Europe.

We anticipate that the successful candidate will have an interest in a ‘lab-based approach to urban development. A key part of the role will be helping to grow the research activities and presence of the newly formed UrbanLab Galway. This will be set within the context of examples of best practice across Europe and beyond in the successful matching of the strengths of a city’s unique social, cultural and entrepreneurial mix with that of its University.

We are particularly interested in applications from those working in the broad fields of Economic, Urban and/or Cultural Geography and those already familiar with the transformative effects of place-based, transformation and stakeholder engagement in small to medium sized cities. The post will require working with colleagues from a variety of backgrounds; a keen interest in the future of innovative education practices, as well as a strong knowledge of social scientific research methods and practices, are key requirements for this post.

The post is funded under the Horizon Europe IN SITU project which combines research and experimental actions to advance the innovation-related practices, capacities in 6 European regions. IN SITU brings together leading approaches to investigating economic evolution and diversification, a challenge-oriented approach to processes of innovation, non-urban place-based planning and development, and creative industries entrepreneurship to investigate the situation of CCIs in non-metropolitan areas. The project couples this with a pragmatic capacity-building programme to enable CCIs to address some of the key issues of their communities/ region and of our time. The core defining

aspect of IN SITU is the interlinking of research and practice through place-based IN SITU Labs, hubs for projects in 6 non-metropolitan regions across Europe, located in Portugal, Ireland, Iceland, Finland, Latvia, and Croatia.


· Data gathering and analysis. This will involve the use of primarily qualitative methodologies; Culture mapping and place auditing;

· Reviewing and assessing international literatures;

· Undertake interviews with key stakeholders involved in the programme and beyond, process resulting data, and contribute to the development of analyses;

· Designing and pursuing innovative forms of public engagement;

· Activating publics in an effort to identify better approaches to development;

· Contribute to writing and editing of papers, reports, articles and evaluation and monitoring reports;

· Organise communication, dissemination and outreach actions related to the project;

· Participate in dissemination of research findings and contribute to future funding applications;

· Participate in the wider research and scholarly activities of UrbanLab Galway and within Geography at NUI Galway.

Qualifications/Skills required:

· A PhD in Geography or cognate discipline. Preference will be given to candidates who can demonstrate appropriate experience and knowledge of working in research areas that relate to the Urban restructuring, creative cities and critical pedagogies discourses.

· An ability to work effectively and in a mutually supportive manner within an interdisciplinary team of researchers.

· Evidence of internationally peer reviewed publication and a desire to publish and communicate research widely.

· Excellent communication (written and verbal) and presentation skills and a high level of initiative, commitment to deadlines and team interaction is also crucial.

· Significant knowledge and appropriate experience of using qualitative and/or mixed-method approaches to social research.

· Experience of conducting focus groups and interviews with senior level stakeholders identified above, would be an advantage.

· Excellent and demonstrable knowledge of relevant computer software (including, for example, MS Office, and qualitative data analysis.

· Familiarity with quantitative data analysis techniques and software [e.g. SPSS and surveying software] would be an advantage.

· Experience with Augmented Reality Applications and methodologies will be an advantage.

· An awareness of legal and ethical requirements regarding data protection and confidentiality.

Essential Requirements: (i.e criteria for shortlisting (minimum of four)

· PhD in Geography or related area of expertise

· Evidence of peer-revied publications

· Excellent communication skills

· Demonstrated expertise in mixed-methods approaches within the social science

Desirable Requirements: (i.e criteria for shortlisting (minimum of four)

· Demonstrable expertise in quantitative methods

· Evidence of interviewing and focus group-based engagements

· Interdisciplinary research and communication practices

· Experience in relevant European and Irish data protection and confidentiality laws

Salary: €39,522 to €51,036 per annum pro rata for shorter and/or part-time contracts (public sector pay policy rules pertaining to new entrants will apply).

Start date: Position is available from 15 October 2022

Continuing Professional Development/Training:

Researchers at NUI Galway are encouraged to avail of a range of training and development opportunities designed to support their personal career development plans.

Further information on research and working at NUI Galway is available on Research at NUI Galway

For information on moving to Ireland please see

Further information about Geography at NUI Galway is available at

Informal enquiries concerning the post may be made to Dr Pat Collins or Professor Ulf Strohmayer

To Apply:

Applications to include a covering letter, CV, and the contact details of three referees should be sent, via e-mail (in word or PDF only) to Dr Pat Collins; e-mail:

Please put reference number NUIG RES 228-22 in subject line of e-mail application.

Closing date for receipt of applications is 5.00 pm on the 15th of September 2022

Interviews are planned to be held in late September/early October

We reserve the right to re-advertise or extend the closing date for this post.

National University of Ireland, Galway is an equal opportunities employer.

All positions are recruited in line with Open, Transparent, Merit (OTM) and Competency based recruitment

‘NUI Galway provides continuing professional development supports for all researchers seeking to build their own career pathways either within or beyond academia. Researchers are encouraged to engage with our Researcher Development Centre (RDC) upon commencing employment – see for further information.’