Employment: Research Fellow, University of Nottingham

Closing date 15th November 2013

Research Fellow,
Department of Archaeology,
University of Nottingham.

‘AHRC-funded Cultural and Scientific Perceptions of Human-Chicken Interactions’

£27,854 – £31,331 per annum, depending on skills and experience.  Salary progression beyond this scale is subject to performance.

Ref: ARTS14290

Applications are invited for the above 10 month Post Doctoral Research Associate position, starting January 6, 2014. It is one of five research posts linked to the recently awarded AHRC project entitled: Cultural and Scientific Perceptions of Human-Chicken Interactions funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Science and Culture Large Grant Scheme.

This collaborative project between eight researchers at the Universities of Bournemouth, Leicester, Nottingham, York, Roehampton and Durham, will explore the natural and cultural history of chickens, the most globally ubiquitous domestic animal.

To elucidate the circumstances and meaning of the westward spread of chickens from their origins in Southeast Asia to Europe and the Americas (from the late prehistoric period to the present), our multi-disciplinary team of archaeologists, anthropologists, geneticists, and zooarchaeologists will integrate the evidence from across their fields to address the following questions:

  • When, how and why did domestication and the early husbandry of chicken take place?
  • How rapidly did chickens spread into different parts of Europe and how was this diffusion linked to population movements, trade or cultural changes?
  • When did poultry and egg production emerge and how intensively were chickens exploited for these products in different regions and periods?
  • When and where did modern chicken breeds develop?
  • How have chickens changed society and culture in antiquity and in modern times?
  • Can evidence from the past be used to transform modern practices of chicken management?

The successful candidate will be responsible for the initiation and analysis (osteological and isotopic) of modern and ancient chicken remains, including eggshell. No previous experience of isotope analyses is required as full training will be given; however, it is expected that the successful candidate will be committed to learning new skills and be capable of working independently once fully trained. They will assist with the dissemination of the project’s results through a variety of media (academic publications and presentations, popular articles and outreach activities) and will actively contribute towards the day-to-day running of the project, maintaining dialogue with the project’s wider team. The PDRA will be supervised by Dr Naomi Sykes and will work alongside Dr Holly Miller in the Department of Archaeology and in collaboration with staff at the NERC Isotope Geosciences Laboratory, Keyworth.

Candidates must have a First Degree in a relevant area (or equivalent), and a PhD (or equivalent) in zooarchaeology. They must have considerable practical experience of zooarchaeology together with knowledge of avian osteology and techniques of analysis. In addition candidates must have experience of the management and utilisation of large datasets. Specialist knowledge of current research in the field is desirable.

The successful candidate may be required to travel to visit collections if necessary.

This post commences on 6 January 2014 and will be offered on a fixed-term contract until 5 November 2014. The successful candidate must be available from 6 January 2014.

Informal enquiries may be addressed to Dr Naomi Sykes, tel: 0115 951 4813 or email:naomi.sykes@nottingham.ac.uk. Please note that applications sent directly to this email address will not be accepted.

For more details and/or to apply on-line, please click on the Apply button below. If you are unable to apply on-line please contact the Human Resources Department, tel: 0115 951 5206.  Please quote ref. ARTS14290.

Closing date: 15 November 2013

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