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    Research Fellow - AR2289MR

    University of St Andrews

    School of Geography and Sustainable Development

    Vacancy Description: School of Geography and Sustainable Development

    Salary £33,797 - £36,914 per annum

    Start Date : As soon as possible

    Fixed Term 18 months

    We are seeking to appoint a Research Fellow to work on a project on Understanding Recent Fertility Trends in the UK and Improving Methodologies for Fertility Forecasting (FertilityTrends) funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). This is a joint project between the Universities of St Andrews and Southampton led by Prof. Hill Kulu. The project examines the significant fluctuations in fertility levels in the UK in the last two decades, investigates their causes, and develops improved methodologies for fertility forecasting. The last two decades have witnessed dramatic changes in fertility levels, which were not predicted by demographers or government statisticians: Fertility significantly increased in the first decade of the 21st century, whereas it has declined thereafter, and this decline has continued during the Covid-19 pandemic. These changes when translated into numbers of births, have had important implications, for example in the provision of health services, childcare, and school places. The project aims, first, to produce detailed measures of fertility changes in recent years in the UK. Second, it decomposes the overall changes into those attributable to compositional changes in the UK population, e.g. by country of birth and education, and those which are attributable to behavioural changes over time, i.e. women have fewer or more children. Finally, these insights will be used to develop new methodologies for more accurate forecasting of fertility applying them to the UK and its constituent countries. The developed methodologies could be applied to project fertility in other industrialised countries. For further details on the project, please see at https://fertilitytrends.wp.st-andrews.ac.uk/.
     
    This is an excellent opportunity for a dynamic and dedicated researcher to work in an international team of researchers on a highly relevant topic. Two post-doctoral researchers are working on the project; one is based in St Andrews and the other in Southampton. The former will clean and preparing data from the Scottish Longitudinal Study (SLS), Northern Ireland Longitudinal Study (NILS), and Understanding Society (or UKHLS) for the analysis and will conduct data analysis using the three UK Longitudinal Studies (including the ONS Longitudinal Study) and UKHLS. The St Andrews-based Research Fellow will investigate fertility trends over time across the UK’s constituent countries and will analyse fertility patterns by population subgroups. They will write up research results for publication in leading international social science journals. They will also help organise workshops and will be responsible for the update of the project webpage. Candidates should have a PhD in a social science discipline (including statistics and applied mathematics), experience in handling longitudinal data and conducting event history (or survival) analysis. Good communication and management skills are essential.
     
    The posts are available from May 2021 for 18 months.
     
    Informal enquiries can be directed to: Professor Hill Kulu, Hill.Kulu@st-andrews.ac.uk or Professor Elspeth Graham, efg@st-andrews.ac.uk
     
    Applications are particularly welcome from women, people from the Black, Asian, Minority or Ethnic (BAME) community and other protected characteristics who are under-represented in Science posts at the University.
     
    The University is committed to equality for all, demonstrated through accreditation (Athena SWAN; Carer Positive; Stonewall, LGBT and Race Charters), as listed on: http://www.st- andrews.ac.uk/hr/edi/diversityawards/.
     
    The School of Geography and Sustainable Development holds an Athena SWAN Bronze Award and is fully committed to equality, diversity and inclusion. More information can be found at https://www.st-andrews.ac.uk/geography-sustainable-development/equality-diversity/
     
    Please quote ref: AR2289MR
     
    Closing Date: 17 May 2021
     
    School of Geography and Sustainable Development
    Salary: £33,797 - £36,914 per annum
    Fixed Term: 18 months
    Start: As soon as possible

    Please apply here.