2 Post-Docs in Global Hip Hop Studies in Ireland

Post-Doctoral Researchers – 2 positions in Global Hip Hop Studies

Closing Date for Applications: 09 Sep 2019
Department: Department of Music
College: College of Arts, Celtic Studies & Social Sciences
University: University College Cork in Ireland 
Job Type: Research
Salary: €37,221 – €44,266 p.a. (IUA Salary Scale)

Position Summary

Two Post-Doctoral Researcher posts in Hip Hop Studies, are available at the Department of Music in the School of Film, Music, and Theatre at University College Cork. The positions are funded by the European Research Council and are associated with the research project CIPHER: Hip Hop Interpellation. This study of global hip hop knowledge flows will synergize ethnographic and computational methods to examine how hip hop “unlocks the global through the local.” The principal investigator of the project is Professor J. Griffith Rollefson.

We look to hire two Post-Doctoral Researchers with specialization in the hip hop cultures of any world culture region(s) outside of Europe and North America. Especially welcome (but not necessary) will be hip hop scholars with specialisms in two or more cultural/musical/linguistic areas (e.g. Japanese and Mandarin; Wolof, French, and Arabic; Spanish, Tagalog, and English).

This study of global hip hop knowledge flows will synergize ethnographic and computational methods to examine how we might conceive of hip hop as a form of “bottom-up globalization.” The successful candidates may have a disciplinary background rooted in any of the four traditional “elements” of hip hop (DJing/turntablism, MCing/rapping, graffiti/street art, bboy/bgirl dance) or any university discipline, but must demonstrate a deep knowledge of and commitment to hip hop’s “fifth element”: knowledge (of self). The postdoctoral scholars will also demonstrate knowledge of the theory and methods of ethnographic fieldwork and/or community engaged scholarship and have an established track record in such work. The successful candidates will have linguistic, musical, and cultural specializations in one or more geographic communities and an ability to do community-engaged work across various cultural sites and scenes. In their project proposal, the candidates are expected to outline how their research record, interests, and skills align with the CIPHER project – namely, how they might explore hip hop’s localizations in their field(s) of cultural specialization. Citing specific “gems” of local hip hop knowledge in the context of the proposal will be particularly advantageous.

The Post-Doctoral Researchers will work closely with J. Griffith Rollefson, as well as doctoral student researchers, a team of Computational Analysts with specializations in social media, big data, stylometry, and sonic analysis, an Advisory Board of established global hip hop scholars, and an Artistic Council of global hip hop artists.

The successful candidates will have access to dedicated funds for research and conference travel, and assist with the organization of CIPHER’s international conferences and publications.

The successful candidates are expected to live in Cork, Ireland and become part of the research environment/network of the university and contribute to its development. The Post-Doctoral Researchers are expected to publish independently and together with the CIPHER team, present research papers at workshops and international conferences, and contribute to popular dissemination of the research results.

In the evaluation of the applications, emphasis will be placed on:

  • the candidate’s scholarly merit, research-related relevance, and innovation
  • demonstrated knowledge of hip hop music and culture in local and global perspective
  • demonstrated experience in ethnographic and/or community-engaged research in one or more cultural, geographic, or linguistic field sites
  • the applicant’s estimated academic and personal ability to carry out the project within the allotted time frame and contribute to the research project CIPHER
  • good co-operative skills, and the ability to successfully join in academic collaboration within and across disciplines.

Post Duration: 2 years

Salary: €37,221 – €44,266 p.a. (IUA Salary Scale)

Project: CIPHER: Hip Hop Interpellation

Key Duties and Responsibilities

This title will apply to newly qualified Post-Doctoral Researchers and will be considered as a period of training as the researcher will have dual goals in terms of the research project and their own career development. The researcher will be mentored by a Principal Investigator (PI). It is expected that a researcher would spend not more than 3 years at the Post Doctoral level, subject to the term of the project and would then be eligible to compete for a Senior Post Doctoral post advertised by the University.

The primary focus of the Postdoctoral Researcher will be research however a particular emphasis during this stage should include;

  • To conduct a specified programme of research under the supervision and direction of a Principal Investigator/Project Leader.
  • To engage in appropriate training and professional development opportunities as required by the Principal Investigator, School or College in order to develop research skills and competencies.
  • To gain experience in grant writing.
  • To engage in the dissemination of the results of the research in which they are engaged, as directed by, with the support of and under the supervision of a Principal Investigator.
  • To become familiar with the publication process.
  • To acquire generic and transferable skills (including project management, business skills and postgraduate mentoring/supervision).
  • To engage in the wider research and scholarly activities of the research group, School or College.
  • To interact closely with postgraduate research students who are studying for a Masters or a PhD and possibly have an agreed role in supporting these students in their day to day research in conjunction with an academic supervisor.
  • To carry out administrative work to support the programme of research.
  • To carry out additional duties as may reasonably be required within the general scope and level of the post.
  • To contribute to costing research grant proposals and assist in the financial management of a research project.


  • PhD in relevant humanities and social science field that offer a solid foundation for research in hip hop studies (e.g. ethno/musicology, ethnic/area studies, cultural studies, anthropology, education, media studies, African American studies, sociology, art history, etc.). The doctoral dissertation must have been submitted for evaluation before the application deadline.
  • Experience in ethnographic and/or community-engaged research.
  • The candidate’s research must be closely engaged with the field of hip hop studies and/or aligned with the CIPHER initiative’s methods, aims, an ethos.
  • Appropriate technical competence and accomplishment.
  • A capability of working within a project team to achieve results.
  • Good communication, organisation and interpersonal skills.
  • A commitment to gaining practical experience working on a research project.
  • Ability to work well within a team.
  • Personal suitability and motivation for the position.
  • Please note that Garda vetting and international police clearance check may form part of the selection process.

For Informal Enquiries on the post candidates should contact:

Name: J. Griffith Rollefson

Title: Professor of Music

Email Address: cipher@ucc.ie

Telephone: +353 (0)21 490 4530

To Apply:

Applicants must submit the following attachments in pdf format, to J. Griffith Rollefson, Professor of Music, cipher@ucc.ie, +353 (0)21 490 4530, on or before the closing date 9 September 2019.

  • Application Letter (max 2 pages) describing the applicant’s qualifications and motivation for the position
  • Curriculum Vitae (complete list of education, positions, teaching experience, administrative experience and other qualifying activities, including a complete list of publications)
  • Project description (max 3 pages). The project description should address the following questions: (1) How will your work synergize with and/or augment CIPHER’s theory and methods? Please use a specific example or examples of hip hop knowledge from the music, lyrics, dance, imagery, or performance from your region(s) of specialization. How do these examples align with or complicate the theory of Hip Hop Interpellation outlined in the CIPHER proposal; (2) How will you draw upon your disciplinary, artistic, and theoretical background and previous research or practical experience when working on the project? How will that background benefit the project?; and (3) what will be the details of your methodological approach, and how will you deal with potential practical and ethical challenges.

Please note that all documents must be in English.

The short-listed candidates will be invited to an interview by Skype or at UCC. Details of interview will be finalised at a later date. It is envisaged that the posts will start between January and May 2020 and run for two years. It is also envisaged that a further 1-2 postdoctoral posts will be advertised in years 2-3 of the five-year CIPHER study.

To Apply: https://www.ucc.ie/en/hr/vacancies/research/full-details-1006048-en.html

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: