Research Associate positions
Research Associates at Distance Lab have the chance to become
immersed in an intense and exciting creative environment growing in
the beautiful and culturally-rich north of Scotland. The Lab presents
a model of practice-based research and innovation unique in Europe in
which scientific investigation melds with design and the arts, and in
which there is a strong drive to have an impact in the world not only
intellectually but also commercially.
Inspired by the MIT Media
Lab, Distance Lab emphasises the growth and personal development
of its researchers who learn from one another as members of a highly
interdisciplinary team. During their terms, research associates have
many opportunities to give their ideas concrete shape in the form of
artefacts and applications, which become the basis for a dialogue with
the Lab's partnership community and the outside world. Some projects
may naturally lead into commercialisation and others may be
appropriate for scholarly publication, public exhibition, or other
forms of dissemination.
Research Associates are expected to develop projects and themes
together with the Chief Executive or other named supervisor and to
contribute to the overall research vision of Distance Lab. They are
also expected to spend some time collaborating with others and
contributing to relevant contract projects secured by the Lab. A
moderate amount of travel can be expected.
Successful applicants are appointed for terms of up to 2 years,
depending on various circumstances including project funding and the
availability of the applicant. By default, appointments will be
full-time based at Distance Lab's premises, but applicants may propose
shorter-term, part-time, or remote involvement. Those currently
enrolled in a degree programme in a university and those currently
working in industry are welcome to apply on the basis that a
collaborative arrangement can be sought on project development and
Annual full-time equivalent salaries range from 18,000-24,000 GBP.
The role of Senior Research Associate, carrying a salary in the range
of in the range of 25,000-31,000 GBP, is also available but normally
reserved for candidates with prior positive experience with the Lab.
Salaries are commensurate with qualifications and experience. In
addition to other benefits, Distance Lab researchers also receive a
share of revenue derived from their inventions.
Skills and Experience sought
We are looking for radically creative applicants from across Europe
and the world who are buzzing not only with passion and enthusiasm but
who also have a good basis of technical skills and the desire to learn
more and work hard in order to realise their visions at the cutting
edge of technology and design.
Applicants may be recent graduates and should possess a minimum of
a bachelors-level degree or equivalent in a discipline relevant to
digital media technology and/or one of the specific research themes at
Distance Lab. Applicants are expected to have demonstrated a
substantial level of commitment and accomplishment in their areas of
concentration prior to applying, with an emphasis on creative
extensions of those domains.
Successful applicants may have academic backgrounds that can be
described as unorthodox, innovative, or self-generated. Backgrounds
will typically not be narrowly technical, but rather consist of a mix
of different disciplines and interests, one or two in which the
applicant will have deep experience. Some applicants will come from
art schools, some from engineering schools, and some from both or
neither. Some may have extensive industry experience and others may
have none. Proficiency in computer programming or electronics design
is highly desirable but not required. Experience within an
interdisciplinary research environment similar to the MIT Media Lab
would also be highly desirable.
Applicants should have a good knowledge of the English language. A
drivers licence would also be desirable.
Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis. We may advertise
specific research vacancies when there is a need for specific skills
or experience, and these may have an application deadline. If no
specific vacancies are listed in our web site recruitment
section, you are still welcome to apply and we will consider such
applications regularly, based on our current needs and resources
available. If no other dates are given, we will aim to respond within
1 month of receiving your application. If we are unable to offer you
a position, we may request to keep your application on file for future
All applications should be submitted through our online application system. Shortlisted
candidates may be invited to attend an interview at the Lab. The
principal components of an application are:
- Basic personal information
- Previous academic and work experience
- Portfolio illustrating previous projects, clearly indicating
roles taken in each project.
- Personal statement: This statement should give us an impression
of "what makes you tick". Who are you? What do you know how to do?
What personal experiences or projects are you most proud of? What
excites you about Distance Lab? What ideas and research themes are
you passionate about pursuing? What research questions are you eager
to tackle? How would you like to contribute to the development of the
Lab? (Maximum 1 page)
- Unless otherwise specified, concrete project proposals are not
required. However, if you are proposing to work in Distance Lab for
less than one year and you are not responding to a specific
advertisement, a project proposal is recommended, or at least you
should be as detailed as possible about specific activities you
propose to carry out.
- Two referees: Referees can be professors of courses you have
taken; supervisors of internships, practicums, or research; clients or
supervisors in industry employment; people for whom you worked during
summers or while in school...
- Post-specific application materials: Check the information
presented by any specific vacancies you wish to target with your
- Disclosure and Diversity Monitoring information.
Applicants from anywhere in the world are welcomed. If you are not
a citizen of the European Union, we may need to apply for a
work permit on your behalf in order for you to take up residence and
work in Scotland. We will advise accepted applicants of any required
Distance Lab is an equal opportunity employer.