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Postdoc positions in STS and Indigenous health at Deakin University

Postdoc positions in STS and Indigenous health at Deakin University

Two postdoctoral research fellow positions are being advertised in the Alfred Deakin Institute for Citizenship and Globalisation to commence later in 2019 or early 2020.

Either position would suit scholars with expertise in at least one of the following areas, and a willingness to develop expertise in the other areas:

  • Social studies of science and medicine (PhD in anthropology, sociology, science and technology studies, bioethics, geography, or related discipline; or PhD in STEM and publication record in the social sciences)

  • Social studies of racialisation (Critical race studies, Indigenous studies, postcolonial studies, or related areas)

  • Experience working in Indigenous research in Australia or comparable settler colonial contexts

The first position is a two-year position funded through an Australian Research Council (ARC) Discovery Project on Indigenous people and epigenetic science led by Prof Emma Kowal (Deakin), Prof Megan Warin (UofAdelaide) and A/Prof Maurizio Meloni (Deakin). Epigenetics is a rapidly evolving science concerned with how life experiences, such as trauma or stress, can modify DNA and be passed on to negatively affect children’s (and possibly grandchildren’s) health and development. Drawing on anthropology, and science and technology studies, the overall study aims to: 1) investigate how epigenetics is being received by Indigenous Australians, and 2) identify the potential risks and opportunities that narratives of biosocial damage entail. The research aims to understand how the interplay of biology, race, and society are unfolding at the intersection of different knowledge systems and at the forefront of technological progress. The research fellow project will be tailored to the skills and interests of the successful applicant, but will broadly involve social research with Indigenous people and scientists engaged in projects involving epigenetics in Australia.

A second position, funded through Prof Emma Kowal’s Future Fellowship on Science and Indigeneity in Australia, will involve social research on Machado Joseph Disease, a genetic condition similar to Huntington’s Disease that affects hundreds of Indigenous people in the Northern Territory of Australia. In collaboration with the Machado Joseph Disease Foundation and other local organisations, this project will contribute to a multidisciplinary study into the history, contemporary experience and potential futures of Machado Joseph Disease. The research fellow project will be tailored to the skills and interests of the successful applicant, but will involve social research with clinicians, scientists, and Indigenous families affected by the disease. The position will initially be 1 year with a possible extension for an additional two years subject to funding and performance.

Both positions are now accepting applications and will close on 31 July. The positions will be based in Melbourne with periods of fieldwork in relevant Australian locations. Both Australian citizens and international candidates can apply. Positions will be Level B (approx. $95,488AU per annum plus superannuation and benefits). Please direct enquiries to

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