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Research Fellow, ARC Training Centre for the Transformation of Australia’s Biosolids Resource

Job no: 596055
Work type: Part time - Fixed term/Contract
Categories: Research, Science, Technology, Global, Urban & Social Studies

  • Conduct research to explore the social dimensions of biosolids generation and use
  • Salary Level Academic Level B ($98,495 - $116,965 p.a) + 17% Superannuation and Flexible Working Arrangements 
  • Fixed-term, contract position for 3 years    
  • Based at the City campus, but may be required to work and/or be based at other campuses of the University 

About us 

RMIT is a multi-sector university of technology, design and enterprise with more than 91,000 students and 11,000 staff globally. RMIT offers postgraduate, undergraduate, vocational education and online programs to provide students with a variety of work-relevant pathways. 

Our purpose is to help shape the world with research, innovation, teaching and industry engagement. With strong industry connections forged over 130 years, collaboration with industry remains integral to RMIT’s leadership in education, applied and innovative research, and to the development of highly skilled, globally focused graduates. 

RMIT has a strong dhumbali (commitment) to the employment, development and retention of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people within a culturally safe environment; we strongly encourage applications from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. 

About the College and role

The School of Global, Urban and Social Studies (GUSS) is a research active school with research centres of excellent reputation including the Centre for Urban Research where this role will be based.  GUSS sits within College of Design and Social Context which encompasses RMIT University’s renowned art, architecture, design, built environment, communication, and social science disciplines. For more information see

This role will contribute to a research project within the ARC Training Centre for the Transformation of Australia’s Biosolids Resource. The Centre brings together Australia’s leading biosolids researchers and key industry and government stakeholders to advance the sustainable management, transformation and reuse of biosolids.

The Postdoctoral Research Fellow will conduct research to better understand and synthesise the social dimensions of biosolids generation and use in agriculture and other sectors. This research will improve understanding of the challenges and opportunities and provide a conceptual framework of potential barriers and enablers. The project is part of a suite of work on social dimensions within the Centre, it will complement the other projects in the Biosolids Training Centre, strengthening understanding and synergies across them.

Academically, this project will be led by senior social scientists working within Science and Technology Studies and human geography. It will take a theoretically informed and creative approach to explore questions around recycled water and biosolids use, including public perceptions of and cultural attitudes towards sewerage and odour management, place-based studies of attitudes, practices and needs of land holders, and the emergence of circular economy thinking in the water sector and related value chains. It will help develop a deeper understanding of potential biosolids users and their priorities and context in order to generate the strategic and empirical knowledge necessary to help the Centre’s research be genuinely impactful. 

About you 

As Postdoctoral Research Fellow, you will be required to provide evidence of research outputs including publications, conference contributions and/or technical reports, specifically in the area of the social dimensions of resource management, scientific expertise and emerging paradigms such as circular economies. You bring to the role your experience and skills in qualitative applied social science research in a relevant topic area and have the ability to generate alternative funding projects through effective liaison with industry and government.  In the role you will work autonomously with a commitment to work in a team environment, including ability to confidently and effectively work with colleagues, project team leaders, and industry partners.

Mandatory Qualifications 

PhD in a relevant social science field


Expertise in human geography, sociology and/or Science and Technology Studies (STS); knowledge of Australian and international networks and initiatives around wastewater management, biosolids production and reuse, agriculture and/or other land use and environmental challenges; experience and skills in working with scientists and/or engineers.

Please Note: Appointment to this position is subject to passing a Working with Children Check. 

To Apply  

Please submit your CV, covering letter outlining your suitability for the position and click on the ‘Apply’ link below. For further information please reach out to Lauren Rickards, ECP Director Urban Futures via email

Download File PD Research Fellow DSC ARC.pdf

 Applications close on Sunday 30 May at 11:55pm. 

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 RMIT is a Disability Confident Recruitment Team and we are happy to adjust the recruitment process for your accessibility requirements. Please contact us at telling us your preferred type of communication and we will be in touch as soon as possible to discuss your requirements. 

 RMIT is an equal opportunity employer committed to being a child safe organisation. We are dedicated to attracting, retaining and developing our people regardless of gender identity, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability and age. Applications are encouraged from all sectors of the community and we strongly encourage applications from the Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander community. 

 Please note that whilst we still accept applications from any persons interested in our roles, due to the impacts of COVID-19, we are currently prioritising applications from those with current working rights in Australia and who are not affected by travel restrictions. Please see the latest updates to Australia’s immigration and border arrangements during the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak: 

 We are a 2021 Circle Back Initiative Employer – we commit to respond to every applicant. 

Application close: AUS Eastern Standard Time

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