Flexit positions in 2018

12/7/2017

Application deadline

2018-02-07 16:00

Flexit is a project that seeks new, flexible solutions to spread research and researchers outside higher education institutions (HEIs). Its main purposes are:

  • To build bridges between humanities and social sciences (HSS) research and companies and organisations outside academia.
  • To facilitate knowledge exchange and encourage contacts so that more non-academic organisations can perceive and profit from the expertise of postdoctoral HSS specialists.

We also hope, through this programme, to point out alternative career opportunities for HSS researchers. In the long term, RJ seeks to influence the academic merit system so that academia values experience from the business world more highly, and vice versa.

Experience to date has been very good, both for the host establishments and for the researchers. In the new version of Flexit, we hope to enhance academic institutions' involvement in the programme and bridge-building. After an evaluation of the Flexit pilot project, RJ has opened the programme to senior researchers as well and organised the positions so that the researcher is employed at the host establishment (company or organisation) for two years, followed by a year at an HEI. Accordingly, applicants must have established affiliations to their departments by the time of the application.

The organisations taking part in this Flexit call are:
Executive Management Office, City of Helsingborg, , Cultural Administration, Region Skåne, Riksteatern and The Swedish Agency for Accessible Media.

Below, they describe the research areas that interest them. As a prospective Flexit researcher, your task is to transform the issues into an inspiring and practical research plan. Get in touch with the contact persons for the organisations concerned to discuss your ideas and so that you can draw up a research plan with a realistic budget.

You are welcome to contact current Flexit researchers as well.

Presentations

Research on innovative processes in public procurement
Executive Management Office, City of Helsingborg

The Executive Management Office in the City of Helsingborg has long worked to encourage Helsingborg companies to make use of the methods that are described in the Public Procurement Act, such as competitive dialogue, project competition, public-private collaboration for innovation and functional requirements. This work has focused in particular on the City Planning Administration, Property Administration and the municipal technology companies. The aim of this work has been to stimulate a higher degree of innovation and fresh ideas among both companies and our suppliers, especially when it comes to sustainable environmental solutions, so that an exciting and creative business climate evolves in which green technology companies want to stay and develop.

Various methods have been tried, but there is no overall picture of the work and the processes that have been implemented. Nor do we know what impact these processes have had on the business community. To develop our procurement processes, we need to increase and systematise our understanding of these processes and their results. We believe it’s important to answer the following questions:

  • What is the relationship between the methods and processes that have previously been used and research and experiences in the procurement field?
  • How have purchasers, suppliers, users and other groups of relevant citizens been affected by the procurement efforts?
  • What results in terms of innovation and economic growth have been achieved?
  • What impact has procurement work had on political values and objectives: public accountability, rule of law and participation?
  • What type of learning or development processes have been generated as a result of the experience gained from the work on public procurement?
  • How can the methods and processes of public procurement be improved and made more effective?

If you think this sounds exciting, you are the researcher we’re looking for to contribute to our better understanding of innovative processes in public procurements. In your application, please include a research plan describing how you would like to address one or more of the above questions. Alternatively, you can approach the problem from a different perspective. Applicants can have a doctoral degree in business administration, political science, social work, law or other relevant subject.

The position is located in the Unit for Urban Planning at the Executive Management Office in central Helsingborg.

You can find out more at: www.helsingborgstad.se

Contact person
Magnus Ydmark, Head of the Unit for Urban Planning, Department of Strategic Social Development, Executive Management Office
Telephone: +46 (0)42-10 50 78
Email: magnus.ydmark@helsingborg.se

Research on development work regarding cultural and creative industries: driving forces, processes and interaction
Cultural Administration, Region Skåne

Region Skåne’s mission is to help make Skåne an attractive place to live and work by improving quality of life, the business climate and long-term sustainability. Region Skåne also aspires to be Europe’s most creative and innovative region.

As part of this development work, Region Skåne is working with cultural and creative industries to support their impact on Skåne’s growth and attractiveness. More specifically, we want to better understand how local and regional development work in these industries can help attract talent, skills and organisations both to specific locations and to the region as a whole. Examples of issues we believe it is important to study are:

  • How are objectives for development work formulated within cultural and creative industries at municipal and regional levels, and what do the structures and processes for implementation look like?
  • What structural prerequisites need to be in place for individuals or organisations to be able to make a living through the cultural and creative industries (policy priorities, public support systems, business development, funding mechanisms and so on)?
  • What distinguishes the individuals or organisations that succeed and fail in these industries? What factors come into play?

If this sounds exciting, you may be the researcher we are looking for to help us better understand cultural and creative industries. In your application, please include a research plan describing how you would like to approach one or more of the questions above and/or other issues that you think are important in this context.

We envision that you have a doctoral degree in sociology, business administration, political science, psychology, human geography, economic history or other relevant subject. Since the position entails many contacts with the surrounding community, it also requires good communication skills on the part of the applicant.

The position will be part of a context where national collaboration for this multidisciplinary area is in the process of being established. We are closely following an initiative on thematic teamwork from Lund University, but naturally we welcome applications from other higher education institutions.

The position is situated in Region Skåne’s Cultural Administration, which has its premises in Regionhuset at Dockplatsen 26 in Malmö. The Cultural Administration’s main mission is to allocate grants to regional institutions, organisations and the independentcultural activities and to pursue strategic cultural development.

You can read more at www.skane.se/kultur

Contact person
Mats Hallberg, Deputy Director of Cultural Affairs, Region Skåne
Telephone: +46 (0)40-675 37 52
Email: mats.hallberg@skane.se

Research on equality work on, behind and in front of the stage
Riksteatern

Riksteatern, the Swedish National Touring Theatre, is one of Sweden’s largest performing arts institutions and is a central part of the non-profit cultural sector. To strengthen efforts to “reach everyone everywhere”, the organisation began activities aimed at equality integration in 2016.

Interest in equality work in terms of gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, functional variations and socioeconomic background has increasingly grown with the professional cultural sector. At the same time, there is a lack of knowledge of how the systematic integration of equality can be carried out at cultural institutions, and more light needs to be shed on the issue of equality in the nonprofit cultural sector.

For Riksteatern to achieve its goal of “diversity on, behind and in front of the stage”, Riksteatern needs to better understand its audience and employees, volunteer organisations, organisers, and performers. We are looking for a researcher who wants to carry out a research project focusing on Riksteatern’s ongoing work involving equality integration and who has the skills and knowledge to help improve the quality of Riksteatern’s equality efforts.

Examples of issues to be addressed are:

  • How are current management efforts implemented with the objective of increasing diversity and equality on, behind and in front of the stage?
  • What practices promote and discourage equality in an organisation like Riksteatern?
  • What is the role of quantitative and qualitative knowledge of efforts to increase equality in the performing arts industry?
  • What is the function of equality data serve in efforts to promote equality integration in the cultural sector?
  • How are cultural organisations such as Riksteatern different from other popular movements regarding equality work?

If these questions interest you, we encourage you to apply for this position. In your application, please include a research plan describing how you would like to address one or more of the above questions. We envision that the project will be based on Swedish and international research in the areas of civil society research and/or transformation processes in organisations with a focus on widening participation, but other approaches also are welcome. Please also describe how you think the link between academia and practice could look and function in this context.

Applicants can hold doctoral degree in fields such as sociology, political science, gender studies, media studies, pedagogy or other relevant subjects in the humanities or social sciences. Within the framework of that part of the postion funded by Riksteatern, there is an expectation that the researcher who is employed will actively participate with his or her expertise in Riksteatern’s practical transformation processes.

For several years Riksteatern has been commissioned by the Ministry of Culture to provide expert support for the entire Swedish performing arts field. Among other things, this means contributing research efforts and collaborating with civil society, university colleges and universities. You will be part of a small team of researchers and operational developers on the staff of the managing director, which is responsible for Riksteatern’s strategic development work. Your workplace is in Hallunda, and the position involves travel in Sweden.

You can read more at www.riksteatern.se

Contact person
Isak Benyamine, Research and Education Manager
Telephone: +46 (0)70 388 10 07
Email: isak.benyamine@riksteatern.se

Research on the state of reading in an egalitarian and democratic society
The Swedish Agency for Accessible Media

The Swedish Agency for Accessible Media (MTM) produces and distributes books in accessible formats such as audio, Braille, e-text and sign language and makes talking newspapers available. Since 2015 we also have issued easy-to-read news and literature.

Since its inception as  the Talking book and Braille library in 1980, the Agency has added new target groups to its activities. Society and the demands it places on citizens have also changed. Therefore, MTM finds itself in a situation where we need to increase our knowledge of the target groups and their needs, but also to bring about new ways of relating to this knowledge. Perhaps we also need to change our working methods, create new services and develop new products in partnership with the market. Some issues to be addressed are:

  • What are the reading practices of MTM’s current and potential users? Where, what, why, how and when do they read?
  • How can their needs best be met through technology/equipment/digitisation?
  • In what other ways can MTM support these reading practices in the long term?

Access to literature and news is essential in an egalitarian and democratic society. For this reason, we are also interested in how reading can promote participation in society.

MTM is now looking for a researcher within the framework of the Flexit initiative of Riksbankens Jubileumsfond (RJ), who is interested in these issues. You should have a doctoral degree in any field of science that is relevant to the issues above, with broad interdisciplinary experience.

We would like you to write a research plan about how you intend to address any of the above issues, or you can approach issues from a different perspective. You may also see other issues regarding how to promote participation and empowerment?

You will be joining a workplace with many committed colleagues. We feel that we are making an important contribution to society. You will be working in MTM’s R&D unit, which currently consists of six staff members. The R&D unit’s role today is to develop and introduce new products and services at MTM, collect knowledge about users and their needs, and promote research on accessible media and MTM’s target groups. In addition to this, we also have a scientific council. About 110 people work at the Agency. We are located next to the Globen Arena in Stockholm.

You can read more at www.mtm.se

Contact person
Susanne Axner, Head of Unit, Research and Development
Telephone +46 (0)8 580 02 771
Email: susanne.axner@mtm.se

Structure of Flexit positions

The positions are for a maximum of three years, and consist of 75% research and 25% service first at the host establishment and thereafter at the HEI department. RJ funds salary costs and other expenses relating to the research, while the host establishment pays salary for the remainder of the position and bears the costs of office workspace, office

infrastructure and various benefits at the workplace. For the first two years, the host establishment is the employer and appoints a contact person for the researcher, who is based on the premises as an in-house researcher but is expected to retain and develop contacts with academia.

During the third year of the project, the researcher is based at an HEI department, continues with the research in the Flexit project and maintains contacts with the host establishment. During the third year, when the researcher is located at the academic department, RJ's grants cover indirect costs and costs of premises.

Who is eligible to apply?

The applicant must have obtained a doctoral degree in a subject in humanities or social sciences (HSS). The applicant should also have good social skills and good networks both inside and outside the research community.

Application

Every researcher must send in a certificate from an HEI department. This letter must bear the signature of the head of department or equivalent and reach RJ not later than the deadline, which is 4:00 pm on 7 February 2018. The certificate must also be included with the application and placed after the application letter and CV under the heading 'Publications'.

The head of department's certificate (in Word) should also contain information about what the affiliation will include during the first two years of the Flexit project (a maximum grant of SEK 30,000 a year is payable for administrative costs of affiliation during the first two years of the project). Affiliation should include access to library services, copying facilities and some administrative assistance. The certificate from the department also guarantees that the department has the intention of employing the researcher during the third year of the project.

Selection process

After an expert review, organised by RJ, interviews will be conducted during April and May 2018. The contact persons at the host establishments (companies and organisations) will invite applicants to interviews, and any allowance for travel expenses will be paid by RJ. The positions will be filled between 1 July 2018 and 31 December 2018.

The application system will be open from 9 January 2018. Applications must reach RJ by 4:00 pm on 7 February 2018.

Applications are submitted via rj.se. Read the instructions under 'Make an application' to the right.

  • Specify the host establishment for your position in the heading and the application letter. Under the heading 'Publikationer' ('Publications'), you should place the head of department's certificate, a CV (describing your qualifications, including an account of your connection with a Swedish HEI), names of referees and a brief list of publications. Under 'Anslagsförvaltare' ('Grant administrator'), specify the HEI department that will host you. Specify the HEI's employer's social- insurance contribution top-up rate (LKP). The salary you state in the application must be based on current salary, which also applies during the project (including the customary salary revision). The same thing applies to the budget item 'Drift' ('Operating costs'). The operating costs specified under the heading Comments on the budget need to be well founded and are (if approved) the ones that will apply to the project.
  • For every project grant, RJ also awards an internationalisation grant. This grant may be used for research stays abroad, inviting foreign research colleagues, national and international conference travel, and language editing of material in languages other than Swedish. Accordingly, do not list these costs in your application.
  • RJ also grants funding for publication with open access. These costs should therefore not be listed in the application either.
  • Apart from your personal letter, the head of department's certificate (in Word) and your CV, the application should contain titles and summaries in Swedish and English, and a research plan with particulars of the research that the applicant wishes to conduct, on the basis of the research area specified by the company or organisation (under the heading Project description).
  • The research plan should cover the purpose, disposition, theory, method and implementation of the research and potential contribution to the international research frontline. The plan should also clarify how the researcher is planning to strengthen ties and facilitate knowledge exchange between academia and companies and organisations. The plan may not exceed 20,000 characters, including spaces, in length.

The applicant is responsible for ensuring that the research is compatible with the ethical guidelines laid down by the Swedish Research Council, and that ethical assessment is carried out where required.

If you have any questions about the positions, contact Torbjörn Eng, torbjorn.eng@rj.se, phone +46-(0)8-50 62 64 22, but also the host establishment concerned and its contact person.

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