The Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER) at the University of Essex wishes to appoint a talented Senior Research Officer to support biosocial research using the Understanding Society. This is an exciting point in the Study’s history, as ESRC has funded biomarkers being collected on the study again (at wave 16) to create a longitudinal biosocial resource to add to the existing biomarkers, genetics, epigenetic and proteomic data already available.
Understanding Society: The UK Household Longitudinal Study (UKHLS) is a major household panel survey funded by the Economic and Social Research Council with co-funding from some government departments. The main study began in 2009 and incorporated its predecessor the British Household Panel Study (BHPS) and together, at wave 1, they included approximately 40,000 households. In waves 2 and 3, clinical data were collected from a large subset of participants. These data include blood samples from which a number of analytes were measured, including proteomics data, and DNA extracted for genome and epigenome-wide scans. At wave 16, which goes into the field in 2024, we will repeat this data collection and additionally include the collection of microbiome samples. All Understanding Society data is made available to the research community, and a key part of this role will be to support users wanting to use these data through the development of resources and training.
Duties of the Role
The postholder will have two broad roles: to develop, support and manage the biological resources for the Study and to carry out research using these data to understand the complex associations between people’s social lives, their biology and their health.
A full list of duties and responsibilities can be found within the job pack.
Qualifications and Skills required
The successful candidate will hold doctoral level degree in relevant biological, bioinformatic or health discipline (or be close to completion of PhD), or equivalent professional experience or practice.
You must have an understanding of biology or bioinformatics, with experience of managing large-scale genotype data processing and management, metadata management and documenting datasets. A familiarity with standard computational tools of statistical genetics and advanced programming experience with scripting languages is also essential, whilst experience of quantitative analysis using large-scale survey data would be an advantage.
The postholder needs to be able to explain complex biological and statistical processes to a wide range of audiences. You must also be able to demonstrate the ability to establish and maintain strong and positive working relationships with a wide range of colleagues, data users and external partners.
Applications are welcome for full-time and part-time hours where applicants are able to work a minimum of 0.6 FTE (21.6 hours per week). Please state clearly on your application form the contract type for which you are applying, and how many hours per week you wish to be considered for if applying for part-time.
At the University of Essex, internationalism and diversity is central to who we are and what we do. We are committed to being a cosmopolitan, internationally oriented university that is welcoming to staff and students from all countries, faiths and backgrounds, where you can find the world in one place.
To support this commitment we have our Global Forum, a staff-led network that promotes and celebrates the rich cultural diversity among Essex staff, and our Colchester campus based Faith Centre, which hosts regular services, meetings and events organised by our chaplains and faith representatives. For more information see: https://www.essex.ac.uk/life/student-facilities/religion-and-faith
Please see the attached job pack, which contains a full job description and person specification, which outlines the full duties, skills, qualifications and experience needed for this role plus more information relating to the post. We recommend you read this information carefully before making an application. Applications should be made on-line, but if you would like advice or help in making an application, or need information in a different format, please email the Resourcing Team (firstname.lastname@example.org).
*More information: Working at the University