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Study and Career

Research Officer/Senior Research Officer in Sociology

The Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) has a long-established tradition of sociological research, and they wish to recruit a sociologist with strong quantitative skills to add to their team. This is a tenure-track position and the appointment will be made at Research Officer or Senior Research Officer level, as appropriate to the successful candidate’s experience.


The Institute

The Economic and Social Research Institute, founded in 1960, is located in Dublin’s South Docklands area. Their mission is to produce high quality research, relevant to Ireland’s economic and social development, with the aim of contributing to knowledge and informing policymaking and public debate.


Sociological Research

The successful candidate will join the Social Research Division of the ESRI, which consists of a multi-disciplinary team of sociologists, economists, epidemiologists, psychologists, health service researchers and statisticians. Divisional research areas include social inclusion and equality; health and quality of life; migration and integration; education; employment and workplace; wellbeing of children and young people; behavioural research; and taxation, welfare and pensions. The Institute has excellent facilities and a supportive atmosphere, with a particular emphasis on team-based research.  All research has an empirical focus, and strong quantitative research skills (including the use of advanced statistical methods) are essential. They also undertake mixed methods research involving both qualitative and quantitative elements.  All projects/programmes are undertaken with a view to publication in academic journals and/or policy reports and all contributions are recognised in the attribution of authorship.  ESRI research also has a strong policy focus, allowing the successful candidate the opportunity to interact with policymakers.  The Institute aims to contribute to an understanding of Irish society and to inform Irish social policy but also has a strong record of collaborative research with other European institutions and encourages comparative projects.  ESRI staff members are affiliated to Trinity College Dublin, providing opportunities for collaboration and interaction.  They are strongly committed to ongoing staff training and development, and researchers are supported to participate in international conferences and networks.  


Role Description

The ESRI is seeking to recruit a Sociologist who will contribute intellectual and project leadership. The successful candidate will therefore be expected to have the leadership skills and experience necessary to lead more junior researchers. The person appointed will also be expected to raise research funds and to engage frequently with policy-makers and stakeholders. A PhD in Sociology is essential, and preference will be given to candidates with expertise in one or more of the following: social stratification, social inclusion, equality or related fields. As with all researchers at the ESRI, the successful candidate will be expected to produce high-quality research which can be published in both international peer-reviewed journals and domestically-oriented policy papers and reports


Skills, Qualifications and Experience

The successful candidate will have:

  • A PhD in Sociology;
  • A minimum of 4 years’ post-doctoral experience or equivalent for appointment at RO level and a minimum of 8 years post-doctoral experience for appointment at Senior Research Officer level; 
  • Very strong quantitative skills, including experience of longitudinal data analysis;
  • A strong background in social stratification, social inclusion, or equality research;
  • A strong track record of publication in leading international, peer-reviewed journals;
  • Flexibility and capacity to contribute to other areas of ESRI research;
  • Experience of translating research findings for diverse audiences;
  • Excellent presentation skills with experience in presenting at seminars and conferences;
  • Experience of writing successful grant applications/funding proposals;
  • Research/project management & leadership skills;
  • Capacity to undertake independent research on policy-relevant issues including developing relevant research questions;
  • Proven experience in engaging with policy makers and other stakeholders;
  • Excellent communication, writing and interpersonal skills;
  • Proven ability to work independently and within a highly motivated team;
  • Experience of delivering high quality outputs to tight deadlines.


Terms & Application Procedure

It is intended to appoint at Research Officer level although the appointment may be made at Senior Research Officer level if appropriate to the successful candidate’s skills and experience. A mapping of ESRI grades to the corresponding grades in the Irish University system is set out below. The appointee will also hold an adjunct position at Trinity College Dublin. Appointments at Research Officer and above are normally made on five-year, fixed-term contracts. The successful candidate will be eligible for tenure, subject to assessment. Secondment arrangements may be considered for eligible candidates.

Prospective candidates are encouraged to contact jobs [at] for further information on the terms and conditions of these positions. The role is full-time (37 hours per week - standard working hours are 09.00-17.30, Monday – Thursday and 09.00-17.00, Friday). Their offices are based in Dublin 2.

The ESRI are following Government guidelines regarding COVID-19 and its offices are currently closed. Therefore, each stage of the selection process is likely to be held via video-conference and the successful candidate may be expected to work remotely in the Republic of Ireland for a temporary period.

All applications will be acknowledged. Late or incomplete applications will not be processed. 

To apply for this position please follow the link below. The closing date for applications is 5pm on Friday 12 March 2021.  


The ESRI is an equal opportunities employer and is committed to accommodating the needs of people with disabilities to enable them to participate in the selection process. Please let them know if you have any particular requirements should you be invited for interview or that you wish them to take into account when considering your application.

More information
The Economic and Social Research Institute