Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Education Economic and Social Research Institute Ireland

Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Education


The Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) wishes to appoint a Postdoctoral Research Fellow, who will work in the education research area.

The Postdoctoral Research Fellow will work on a diversity of projects, using quantitative, qualitative and mixed-method research approaches. It is envisaged that projects will include research on second-level education, further and higher education, and the experiences of different groups of students (such as socio-economically disadvantaged students, students with special educational needs) across the education system.

The successful candidate will join the Social Research Division of the ESRI, which consists of a multi-disciplinary team of economists, sociologists, psychologists, neuroscientists, health service researchers, epidemiologists and statisticians, working in the areas of health and quality of life; behavioural economics; taxation, welfare and pensions; education; and social inclusion and equality.

The ESRI is now inviting applications from researchers in education or related fields (sociology, social policy or psychology) for this three-year Postdoctoral Research Fellowship.

The Institute

The Economic and Social Research Institute, founded in 1960, is located in Dublin’s South Docklands area. Its mission is to produce high quality research, relevant to Ireland’s economic and social development, with the aim of contributing to knowledge and informing policymaking and public debate. It has over 120 staff including economists, sociologists and other social scientists, in addition to support and technical staff.

Research at the ESRI

ESRI researchers contribute to the development of public policy across a range of issues by providing timely evidence, which shapes national and international debates. The ESRI has a number of research programmes with government departments and agencies, where a wide range of policy issues are examined by ESRI researchers. 

As well as providing evidence to inform policy, ESRI researchers publish high-quality academic research, and may have the opportunity to engage in teaching and other research activities at Trinity College Dublin, which has a strategic alliance with the ESRI. The ESRI is also involved in the development and collection of some of the key longitudinal data sources in Ireland including Growing Up in Ireland (GUI) and The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA).


Role Description – Postdoctoral Research Fellow

The successful candidate will ideally have a background and experience in education research but candidates with a background in sociology, social policy or psychology will also be considered. He/she will join a team of experienced researchers analysing issues around the use of digital technologies in education, higher education participation and outcomes, inequality in education, curriculum and assessment in second-level education, and the experiences of students with special educational needs. They will use a range of quantitative and qualitative research methodologies to examine these, and related, issues. Opportunities to collaborate with researchers on other projects across the Institute will also be available. In addition, the role will involve:

  • Leading on, and contributing to, the analysis of quantitative and qualitative data;
  • Writing and contributing to peer-reviewed journal articles and policy briefs arising from the research findings;
  • Communicating with key stakeholders and co-ordinating stakeholder events.

Skills, Qualifications and Experience

The successful candidate should be able to demonstrate the following:


  • A PhD in education or a related field (sociology, social policy, psychology);
  • Strong quantitative research methods, including longitudinal data analysis techniques, are essential
  • Qualitative research methods including qualitative interview skills, qualitative analysis skills are desirable
  • Strong computer skills including proven ability in using quantitative data analysis packages (e.g. use of SPSS, STATA) and qualitative data analysis packages (e.g. use of NVivo);
  • Academic writing skills and experience;
  • Excellent communication skills;
  • Strong organisational and administrative skills with the ability to prioritise objectives;
  • The ability to work on one’s own initiative as well as in a team environment;
  • Willingness to undertake training and career development.


  • Peer-reviewed publications;
  • Postdoctoral research experience;
  • Research experience in a related field;
  • Experience in writing research grant proposals.

Terms and Application Procedure

Appointments will be on a three-year fixed-term contract basis and starting salary will be in the range €40,349 – €44,719, commensurate with experience. The successful candidates will be based in offices in Dublin 2. 


How to apply

To apply for this position please click on the link below. The closing date for applications is 5pm on 9th April 2019. All applications will be acknowledged. Late or incomplete applications will not be processed.  


The ESRI is an equal opportunities employer and is committed to accommodating the needs of people with disabilities to enable them to participate in the selection process. Please let us know if you have any particular requirements should you be invited for assessment/interview or that you wish us to take into account when considering your application.

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