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UNU Research Officer

Based at the United Nations University - International Institute for Global Health (UNU-IIGH), Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia with three months spent at the Sustainable Places Research Institute, Cardiff University

Initial appointment will be for one year, with the possibility of renewal subject to satisfactory work performance.

Salary band: commensurate with qualifications and experience

Closing date: open until position is filled

Starting date: this post is available from 1 May 2017.

UNU Research Officer

23 February 2017

Download the full job description.


CUROP Opportunities at the Sustainable Places Research Institute

Attitudes and access to greenspace among Cardiff’s Eastern European communities

Cardiff has fantastic parks and greenspace right at its heart, a great resource for the wellbeing of the city’s population. Research into how people benefit from green places has found that not everyone visits them or finds them easy to use. But we don’t know how people who recently moved to the UK from Eastern Europe feel about parks, or how they benefit from them. This project focuses on these communities in Cardiff to begin uncovering their relationships to greenspace. It is an opportunity to design and carry out research to with local stakeholders and communities, and explore interactions with the urban environment.

Work will include:

  • reviewing relevant policy and strategies
  • contacting local stakeholders (council officials, park rangers, community associations)
  • selecting and using a method to gather primary data, e.g. focus group, qualitative survey
  • Preparing a summary of findings and recommendations.

The project:

  • eight weeks, full time, to start before the end of June.
  • stipend £200 /week.
  • supervised by Dr Hannah Pitt.
  • based at Sustainable Places Research Institute, 33 Park Place.

Who should apply:

1st or 2nd year undergraduate students with some knowledge of qualitative research methods, and an interest in social science, or human geography. You should like communicating with different people.

To apply:

Write a statement (300 words) explaining why you are interested in the project and what you would like to get out of it. Send this with your CV (2 pages) to by 17:00 on 15 May 2017. Shortlisted candidates will be invited for an informal interview.

Exploring the links between aspects of the social infrastructure, health and vulnerability to natural hazards in Sichuan, China

A growing body of research explores how features of social networks contribute to health and resilience at the individual and community level. However, the underlying pathways are complex and incompletely understood. Focusing on resilience to geophysical hazards in Sichuan, China, we have collected social survey data to further explore these relationships. This data characterises various features of social networks (eg social capital, perceived risk, social cohesion) and a range of outcome variables (eg mental health, rate of recovery from disaster). The student will conduct exploratory data analysis to characterise the links between these variables and write a report on the findings, which will be the main outcome of the project. The student will gain experience of statistical and spatial analysis methods of survey data on a critically important topic. The work will contribute to a 3-year research project (funded by NERC, ESRC and the Chinese National Science Foundation, 2016-2019) focussed on improving the resilience of communities at risk from earthquake-induced landslides in Sichuan, China.

Find out more about this project.

Work will include:

  • the student will be introduced to advanced statistical analysis using R and spatial analysis using ArcGIS or QGIS.
  • conducting exploratory data analysis
  • working alongside post-doctoral researchers based in the Sustainable Places research institute

The project:

  • eight weeks, full time, ideally to start by 19 June.
  • stipend £200 /week (full time).
  • supervised by Dr Yi Gong and Dr Brian MacGillivray
  • based at Sustainable Places Research Institute, 33 Park Place.

Who should apply:

This placement will be open (but not limited) to students from MEDIC, SOSCI, PSYCH, GEOP and EARTH. The student will have desk space, computer access and printing facility in PLACE. They will have weekly meeting with supervisors Drs Gong and MacGillivray, and the opportunity to engage with engineers and physical scientists working on the broader project. The student will have the chance to contribute to a publication based on their analysis. Please note final year students are ineligible

To apply:

Please email a 1-page CV along with a statement (up to 300 words) explaining why you should be considered for this placement to Dr. Yi Gong ( and Dr Brian MacGillivray ( by 17:00 on 20 May 2017. Shortlisted candidates will be invited for an informal interview.