Call for Survey Methods Fellowships

Funding is available for short-term Survey Methods Fellowships for research projects to better understand long term participation in Understanding Society, drop out and bias, how mixed mode data collection influences these processes and ways of addressing the resulting kinds of missing data in analyses. 

Understanding Society: the UK Household Longitudinal Study collects annual information from people of all ages in approximately 25,000 households (at Wave 9), including boosted samples of ethnic minorities and immigrants. It provides an unprecedented window on the changing lives of people in all countries of the UK. By focusing on individuals within their household context, it allows inter-relations between different family members within and across generations to be explored. Ensuring that the Study remains representative of the UK population is therefore vital to enabling researchers and policy makers to effectively address the key research questions of the 21st century both in the UK and internationally. In collaboration with NCRM, ISER is launching a Fellowship programme which aims to improve our understanding of response rates in mixed mode data collection with a particular focus on under-represented groups. Additionally, we are interested in ways of investigating and addressing the impact of attrition on findings from the Study.

We would welcome Fellowship applications that investigate either:

  • response, drop out and bias to help inform future strategies to improve representativeness
  • different ways of addressing attrition and non-response bias in data analysis and their impact on the interpretation of findings

Requirements of a Survey Methods Fellowship

The basic requirement of Survey Methods Fellows will be to undertake projects that further contribute to our understanding of participation, drop out and non-response bias in Understanding Society and how to address them.

The findings from the project should:

  • be submitted to a peer review journal  
  • be published as an Understanding Society and/ or NCRM working paper
  • be presented at the Understanding Society Scientific Conference in July 2019 at a special session
  • be presented at (at least) one other academic conference
  • written up for  an Understanding Society Survey methods blog

Selection criteria and eligibility

Any researcher based in a higher education institution (except the University of Essex), the Public or Third Sector or an independent research organisation, is eligible to apply. We particularly welcome applications from early careers researchers (< 3 years post PhD).

Funding will be provided for the fellow’s salary, including NI and pension costs, for up to 12 months (full or part time). Funding is not available for overheads. The planned project must be achievable in the timescale of the project, and the application should demonstrate this.  The costs of travel, conference attendance and communications activities based on the Fellowship findings should be included in your proposal (as well as VAT where applicable).  The total budget should not exceed £60,000.

For more information please read the Survey Methods Fellowship Guidelines

How do I apply?

People wishing to be considered for a fellowship should apply on this application form. You are strongly advised to discuss your ideas with the Understanding Society Survey methods team in advance of submitting your application. Please contact Victoria Nolan in the first instance who will direct you to available team members.

An initial round of applications will be reviewed and shortlisted in the week commencing 3 September 2018, therefore we would suggest submitting your application by the end of August 2018 (following consultation with an ISER team member). Peer reviews of these fellowship applications will be undertaken, and shortlisted applicants will be invited to discuss their proposals with the team at a presentation/ interview session on Monday 17th September. Candidates who have been shortlisted will be notified by 11th September.