We are seeking a postdoctoral researcher (14 month contract) to join the Programmable City project. The researcher will critically examine:
- the political economy of smart city technologies and initiatives; the creation of smart city markets; the inter-relation of urban (re)development and smart city initiatives; the relationship between vendors, business lobby groups, economic development agencies, and city administrations; financialization and new business models; and/or,
- the relationship between the political geography of city administration, governance arrangements, and smart city initiatives; political and legal geographies of testbed urbanism and smart city initiatives; smart city technologies and governmentality.
There will be some latitude to negotiate with the principal investigator the exact focus of the research undertaken. While some of the research will require primary fieldwork (Dublin/Boston), it is anticipated it will also involve the secondary analysis of data already generated by the project.
More details on the post and how to apply can be found on the university HR website. Closing date: 5th December.
We’re recruiting! We are seeking two postdoctoral researchers to work on the Programmable City project to (1) unpack data assemblages, and (2) examine big data industry and smart cities.
These posts will complement the existing research team.
Post 1: Unpacking a data assemblage, including the associated technological stack
Adopting a critical data studies approach, this researcher will examine in depth, and compare and contrast, two data assemblages, mostly likely operating in the public sector. The aim is to gain a detailed conceptual and empirical understanding from a social sciences perspective of how data infrastructures are on the one hand technically assembled (through a technical stack composed of hardware, networks, software, algorithms, data, interfaces) and operated using a set of technical and social practices, and how their production and operation is socially, politically, legally and economically framed. The empirical research will consist primarily of ethnographic work within organisations, along with in-depth interviews with key actors and stakeholders.
Post 2: Big data industry and smart cities
This researcher will, on the one hand, examine in depth the development of big data industries in Dublin and Boston, examining the big data ecosystem (including big data analytics and data brokers) and its associated discursive regime, and on the other, examine how big data are being mobilised and deployed within smart city initiatives as part of big data assemblages. The aim is to gain a detailed conceptual and empirical understanding of the development and use of big data and big data analytics within the private and public sector to complement existing project work on open data, and how big data are being deployed in practice in cities and any associated consequences. The empirical research will consist primarily of in-depth interviews with key actors and stakeholders and one and two case studies of urban big data initiatives.
There will be some latitude to re-jig these projects in negotiation with the principal investigator in order to fit the interests, expertise and experience of the appointed researchers.
Full details can be found on the Maynooth University vacancies page (labelled
Post Doctoral Researcher x 2 – NIRSA).
We’re pleased to announce the advertisement of a three year postdoc position on the Programmable City project. Full details of the project can be found on the Maynooth University HR page, but essentially the post will study algorithms and code used in smart city initiatives (broadly conceived) from a software studies perspective. As such, the project will critically examine how software developers translate rules, procedures and policies into a complex architecture of interlinked algorithms that manage and govern how people traverse or interact with urban systems. It will thus provide an in-depth analysis of how software and data are being produced to aid the regulation of city life in an age of software and ‘big data’. The primary methods will be a selection from those set out in the paper ‘Thinking critically about and researching algorithms’.
We are seeking applications from researchers with an interest in software studies, critical data studies, urban studies, and smart cities to work in an interdisciplinary team. Applicants will:
- have a keen interest in understanding software from a social science perspective;
- be a proficient programmer and able to comprehend other developer’s code;
- have a good, broad range of qualitative data creation and analysis skills;
- be interested in theory building;
- have an aptitude to work well in an interdisciplinary team;
- be prepared to undertake overseas fieldwork;
- have a commitment to publishing and presenting their work;
- have a willingness to communicate through new social media;
- be prepared to archive their data for future re-use by others;
- be prepared to help organise and attend workshops and conferences.
The closing data is 5th December. See the full job description here for more details.
We would encourage any interested candidates to apply for the post and for readers of the blog to bring the post to the attention of those who you think might be interested, or circulate in your networks/social media.