• Full Scholarship

Heriot-Watt University is a public research university based in Edinburgh, Scotland. It was established in 1821 as the School of Arts of Edinburgh, the world’s first mechanics’ institute, and subsequently granted university status by royal charter in 1966. It is the eighth-oldest higher education institute in the UK. The name Heriot-Watt was taken from Scottish inventor James Watt and Scottish philanthropist and goldsmith George Heriot.

They seek an ambitious and creative postdoctoral research associate (PDRA) for a period of 1,5 years (18 months), starting from January 2024.

The PDRA will be working within the auspices of the WIDERA consortium project BEYOND (Beyond Bad Apples: Towards A Behavioural And Evidence-Based Approach To Promote Research Ethics And Research Integrity In Europe) under the guidance of Dr Daniele Fanelli, in a nascent Metascience Lab located in the School of Social Sciences at Heriot-Watt University.

With the general objective of advancing Metascience and helping the progress of all disciplines, the PDRA will actively contribute to the development and testing of new methods to incorporate complexity into their understanding of scientific practices and research integrity. Depending on the candidate’s interests, the specific work may take a more theoretical, methodological, or empirical orientation.

The nature and level of the research requires strong quantitative skills and experience with analytical or computational modelling, or with quantitative analyses.

The post is for a period of 18 months but, after a satisfactory performance during the first 6 months, should the PDRA wish to extend their position, they will be encouraged to lead or collaborate on new grant applications.

Main Duties and Responsibilities

  • Develop and test methods to analyse how the complexity of a field’s subject matter and methodology affects the field’s research practices, using analytical and computational models and/or empirical analyses.
  • Write research publications based on research findings.
  • Contribute to the development of novel, transferable methodologies, and contribute to developing a statistical package that implements them.
  • Take part in dissemination activities, such as conferences and workshops.
  • Help with general management of the project and research group (e.g. web page and social media communication).




  • A salary of £36,023-£44,263 per annum.
  • 33 days annual leave, plus 9 buildings closed days for all full time staff.


  • Should have a PhD and/or equivalent research experience in a suitable subject (any disciplinary background is accepted).
  • Knowledge and practical understanding of basic concepts in information theory (e.g. Shannon Entropy, Kolmogorov complexity), in addition to general quantitative and/or statistical skills.
  • Prior experience and/or a demonstrable interest in modelling and studying complex systems and/or social and behavioural phenomena and/or Metascience.

Desirable Criteria

  • Experience and/or a demonstrable interest in Research Integrity, and/or quantitative studies of science.
  • Good programming skills, including knowledge of the statistical package R.
Eligible Regions: Open for all.

Application Process

  • Cover letter describing your suitability for the post.
  • Full CV including list of publications.
  • An anonymized statement of research interests (ideally 1-page, and no more than 2-pages long, signed only with the applicant’s initials).

Application Deadline: November 21, 2023

Application ClosedOfficial link

For Further Queries

For further queries about this position, contact: Dr Daniele Fanelli [email protected]
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