Virginia Tech is a public land-grant university, committed to teaching and learning, research, and outreach to the Commonwealth of Virginia, the nation, and the world. Building on its motto of Ut Prosim (that I may serve), Virginia Tech is dedicated to InclusiveVT—serving in the spirit of community, diversity, and excellence. We seek candidates who adopt and practice the Principles of Community, which are fundamental to our on-going efforts to increase access and inclusion, and to create a community that nurtures learning and growth for all of its members. Virginia Tech actively seeks a broad spectrum of candidates to join our community in preparing leaders for the world.
This one-year postdoctoral position is funded as part of an NSFCAREER award on "Globalizing Nuclear Emergency Response: Challenges for Interdisciplinary Engagement and International Expertise." The project utilizes the interdisciplinary tool-kit of Science and Technology Studies (STS) to explore questions relating to the unique quality of disaster response expertise, and addresses the prospects of globalizing nuclear emergency response through an integrated research, education, and outreach program. Research areas of particular interest are tacit knowledge preservation, organizational design for flexibility, and evaluating expert improvisation, particularly for the classroom. The principal investigator on the project is Dr. Sonja Schmid.
The postdoctoral fellow will play an active role in the project, work independently on her or his own publications and research, and will teach one graduate seminar over the summer. The fellows project-related responsibilities include collecting and analyzing data (which will require travel), writing articles and reports, and presenting findings at conferences, independently and with the PI. Specifically, the project-related tasks include active participation in (1) mapping existing nuclear disaster response expertise, (2) documenting historical dimensions of nuclear emergency expertise, and (3) developing criteria for effective nuclear emergency response expertise. In addition to research, the postdoctoral fellow will assist with all outreach activities associated with this grant, including a monthly speaker series.
Applicants should have interdisciplinary research interests that overlap with the NSF project, for example, in social and historical studies of nuclear safety, nuclear history, emergency preparedness and response, disaster resilience, sociology of organizations, organizational design, operational flexibility, or expert improvisation. Anticipated benefits from archival resources and access to policy-making organizations available in the Washington, DC metro area should be clearly stated in the application.
Applications are encouraged from a variety of fields, including science and technology studies, history, sociology, anthropology, disaster studies, and other relevant fields.
Applicants must possess a Ph.D. in a relevant social science or humanities field (e.g., science and technology studies, history, sociology, anthropology, or communication). Applicants must have advanced methodological expertise in interviewing and qualitative data analysis, excellent writing skills, and motivation to take initiative to ensure the success of the project. Preference will be given to candidates who exhibit evidence of research interest and demonstrated knowledge in social and historical studies of nuclear safety, nuclear history, emergency preparedness, and response, disaster resilience, sociology of organizations, organizational design, operational flexibility, and expert improvisation. Additionally, foreign language skills (especially Russian, French, Japanese, or German) are highly desirable. Applicants must be willing to travel.
Applicants must have completed all the requirements for the Ph.D. by June 2017, or have received their degree within the last five years.
Employee Category: Research Faculty
Appointment Type: Restricted
Tenure Status: Non-Tenure Track
Percent Employment: Full-time
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Virginia Tech takes a hands-on, engaging approach to education, preparing scholars to be leaders in their fields and communities. As the commonwealth's most comprehensive university and its leading research institution, Virginia Tech offers 240 undergraduate and graduate degree programs to more than 31,000 students and manages a research portfolio of more than $513 million. The university fulfil...ls its land-grant mission of transforming knowledge to practice through technological leadership and by fueling economic growth and job creation locally, regionally, and across Virginia.
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