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EASP – European Association of Social Psychology

Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Social Psychology

17.06.2020, by Tina Keil

University of Sussex, UK
Application deadline: July 16th, 2020

Logo: University of Sussex
Logo: University of Sussex

A Postdoctoral Researcher is needed for a new ESRC-funded research project at the University of Sussex. The project aims to provide a new theoretical understanding of the social psychology of crowd flight, which occurs in response to perceived hostile threats. The work will involve using archive, news media, and interview data to understand key historical and contemporary ‘stampede’ incidents to help develop the new theoretical model.

The project is led by Professor John Drury (School of Psychology). The post will involve being the lead researcher on three empirical studies. First, a descriptive review of incidents involving crowd responses to perceived threats, using secondary sources to identify some common features. Second, a historical case study of the Bethnal Green tube disaster of 1943, drawing on archive sources and some primary data. Third, a case study of the Oxford Street incidents of Autumn 2017 when people fled from a noise they thought was a gunshot, using interviews.

Specific duties will include: getting ethical clearance for the studies; locating and collecting the appropriate secondary data sources; arranging and carrying out interviews; organizing, coding and analysing qualitative data; producing the review and case studies of incidents; drafting journal papers; archiving data-sets with UK Data Service; presenting conference papers; helping to organize Impact events. Skills and experience required include proficiency at interviewing, qualitative analysis (e.g. thematic analysis), working with archives, media materials, and organizing large qualitative data-sets. Some experience of data-triangulation is desirable.

The postholder will be supported by a clerical assistant and will work closely with an external consultant (historian) for the Bethnal Green case study. S/he will also liaise with colleagues running other strands of the overall project (at Keele and St Andrews).

The University of Sussex is a leading research and teaching institution and is ranked within the top 20 in the UK and the top 150 in the world. The School of Psychology at the University of Sussex is one of the largest centres for the study of psychology in the UK. The School was rated 10th in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework. The School has recently been awarded an Athena Swan Silver Award.

Please contact Prof John Drury, email: for informal enquiries.

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