Vacancy: Post Doctoral Research Associate - Centre for Public Policy & Health

Post Doctoral Research Associate Vacancy - Centre for Public Policy & Health, Durham University
Responsible to: Professor David Hunter, Director, Centre for Public Policy and Health, School of Medicine, Pharmacy and Health, Durham University (

Responsible for: research and administration related to a research project recently funded through the NIHR School for Public Health Research (SPHR)

This post is fixed term until December 2014.

Job Summary and Purpose

The successful applicant will play a key role in a project entitled: Shifting the gravity of spending? Exploring methods for supporting public health commissioners in priority-setting to improve population health and address health inequalities.

This innovative project, based at Durham University's Queen's Campus, aims to develop support for local authority-based public health commissioners and other stakeholders in prioritising investment in health improvement and tackling inequalities as well as in deciding on disinvestment strategies. The study will also evaluate the use of evidence in the prioritisation process in order to develop broader insights for knowledge exchange.

The PDRA will work closely with a multi-disciplinary project team drawn from Fuse (a UKCRC Public Health Research Centre of Excellence, bringing together the 5 Universities in the North East -, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), School of Health and Related Research, (ScHARR) Sheffield University and the University of Kent. He/she will also work with a specialist external advisory group established for the project and liaise with related SPHR-funded research on the use of evidence by local authorities being carried out by LSHTM.

The post will involve literature and documentary analysis and in-depth research in three local authority-based case study sites across England where skills in both qualitative and quantitative methods will be required. It will be of interest to applicants with an interest in commissioning, decision-making and decision-support methods related to public health and reducing health inequalities, including methods for economic evaluation. This is a complex project requiring effective project management skills and an ability to work with various social science disciplines, in particular health economics. Working as part of a team, engaging with a wide range of academic and policy partners, and managing tight deadlines are key requirements for this post.

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