Ref 1427/21 Research Fellow, ARC Centre of Excellence in Synthetic Biology, Institute for Culture and Society
Western Sydney University is a modern, forward-thinking, research-led university, located at the heart of Australia’s fastest-growing and economically significant region, Western Sydney. Boasting 11 campuses – many in Western Sydney CBD locations – and more than 200,000 alumni, 49,500 students and 3,500 staff, the University has 14 Schools with an array of well-designed programs and degrees carefully structured to meet the demands of future industry.
The University is ranked in the top two per cent of universities worldwide, and as a research leader, over 85 per cent of the University’s assessed research is rated at ‘World Standard’ or above.
The Institute for Culture and Society carries out research on the transformations in culture and society in the context of contemporary global change. It operates as a leading international centre for interdisciplinary, engaged and collaborative scholarship in the humanities and social sciences for a digital age. Research at the Institute for Culture and Society is organised around an integrated program of research focusing on a number of broad themes including Automated Worlds; Borders & Diversity; Cultural Infrastructures; Environment and Technology; and Urban Futures.
The Institute is one of four Research Institutes at the University, and the only one predominantly focused on the discipline area of the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences (HASS).
An important role of the Institute is to help develop the University’s overall research performance through external income generation and high-quality publications. It also conducts profile-raising activities through organising major conferences, developing a network of similar research entities nationally and internationally, hosting visiting scholars, and forging strategic partnerships with external organisations and communities. Public and community engagement is an integral aspect of the Institute’s work.
The Institute for Culture & Society hosts the Western Sydney University node of the ARC Centre of Excellence in Synthetic Biology (CoESB) (http://www.coesb.com.au). The CoESB is a new, cross-disciplinary, and national research centre, which aims to create the knowledge and strategies necessary for Australia to develop a vibrant bioeconomy building on the nation’s strengths in agriculture.
The Centre will combine engineering with molecular biology to design and construct novel biological systems that can convert biomass from agriculture or waste streams to biofuel, bioplastics and other high-value chemicals. The Centre brings together leading researchers in the humanities, social and technological sciences in an international industry, research and civil society network.
Funded by the Australian Research Council for seven years from 2020 to 2026, CoESB is hosted at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia, with nodes in seven other Australian universities (University of Western Australia, Queensland University of Technology, University of Queensland, University of Newcastle, Australian National University, University of NSW, and Western Sydney University). Research in the CoESB is focused upon Centre’s three capabilities: Systems Bioengineering, Industrial Translation, and Social Dimensions.
The Role – Research Fellow in CoESB
The Research Fellow will be actively engaged with research associated with the Social Dimensions capability, which embeds expertise and analysis from law, ethics, philosophy, the arts, political science, and the social and behavioural sciences within the science and engineering of synthetic biology. With a focus on ethical issues and values, legal frameworks and cultural shifts, this team of scholars explores some of the central questions arising from the CoE, such as what problem are we trying to solve and is synthetic biology even the right solution? And how does the promise translate into practice, policy and benefits for society? The Research Fellow will work with Dr Josh Wodak, the CoESB node leader at Western Sydney University.
The position will conduct and manage primary research on ethical issues and values, and cultural shifts with respect to synthetic biology, with a particular focus on biodiversity conservation and/or climate change mitigation; publish research in high-quality outlets; engage and translate research with collaborators, international colleagues and industry partners; assist with project management and administration of project research; supervise research assistants and, where appropriate, co-supervise PhD students. This research-focused role does not include a teaching load, but opportunities for developing and maintaining a teaching profile may be available during the course of the Research Fellowship.
This is a Full-Time, Fixed-Term position for 3 years based at the Parramatta Campus.
Remuneration Package: Academic Level B $125,306 to $147,860 p.a., (comprising Salary of $105,885 to $125,030 p.a., plus Superannuation and Leave Loading)
Position enquiries: Dr Josh Wodak via email J.Wodak@westernsydney.edu.au
To be considered for this position, please submit:
1. Your CV
2. A 2-page cover letter outlining your experience and how you will contribute to research within the Social Dimensions capability, about ethical issues and values, and cultural shifts with respect to synthetic biology, with a particular focus on biodiversity conservation and/or climate change mitigation.
3. Response to the selection criteria
Closing Date: 8:30pm, Monday 31 May 2021.
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Western Sydney University is committed to diversity and social inclusion. Applications from people of culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds; equity target groups including women, people with disabilities, people who identify as LGBTIQ; and people of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander descent, are encouraged.
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