Research Associate - Graduate School of Media & Communications
Entity: Graduate School of Media & Communications
Location Nairobi, Kenya
Chartered in 1983, Aga Khan University (AKU) is a private, autonomous and self-governing international university, with 13 teaching sites in 6 countries over three continents (www.aku.edu). An integral part of the Aga Khan Development Network (www.akdn.org), AKU provides higher education in several disciplines, carries out research pertinent to the countries and operates 7 hospitals (soon 8) and over 325 outreach clinics, all at international standards. It has almost 2,500 students and 14,000 staff. The University is both a model of academic excellence and an agent of social change. As an international institution, AKU operates on the core principles of quality, relevance, impact and access.
Launched in 2015, the Aga Khan University Graduate School of Media and Communications (GSMC) is the premier source of education and tailored training for journalists, communicators and media executives and entrepreneurs in East Africa and beyond.
Guided by the principles of global excellence and local relevance, GSMC helps individuals to transform their careers and organizations to seize on opportunities and reap the benefits of innovation.
Reporting to the Director, Innovation Center, the Research Associate will plan, coordinate and implement an agenda to support and shape the research activities for the Futures Project, which aims to promote innovation for media viability across the East African region.
Funded by KfW, and conducted in collaboration with the Duetsche Welle Akademie, this project involves formation of the Media Viability Network and an Innovation Centre to be located at Peponi Road in Westlands.
This position will be responsible for undertaking practical, transferrable research that will inform a media viability agenda for East Africa. Research activities will include designing and conducting a benchmark study and implementing a collaborative research agenda which will include action research and media monitoring activities.
The position will be based in the Innovation Centre and all research will be expected to contribute to the activities of both the Media Viability Network and the Innovation Centre.
This position calls for an innovative media scholar, committed to sharing knowledge in novel and impactful ways. All research activities must be undertaken in accordance with University strategy, policy and procedures and the funding agency requirements.
The position holder will also undertake independent and/or collaborative research and lead on aspects of research strategy within the Graduate School of Media and Communications.
- To lead the production of high-quality research publications as required by the funding agency and for dissemination to the wider academic and media communities
- To lead and promote a collaborative research agenda across the Media Viability Network and Innovation Centre.
- Strengthen internal (across AKU and KfW project) and external research collaborations to ensure Project sustainability beyond the life of the grant.
- Actively develop appropriate external contacts and networks relevant for future collaboration and funding opportunities
- Extend, transform and apply knowledge acquired from research to promote media viability within the region. Where necessary, the position holder will be required to work with the University research office to patent any research outcome and the business development unit to commercialize the research product
- Initiate sponsored research proposals and establish collaborative research teams to attract external funding
- Working with the Director, Innovation Centre, develop new research directions for the school
- Develop new ideas for amplification of research outcomes.
- To contribute to the school teaching profile on Research units and media innovation.
- Provide research mentorship and support to graduate students enrolled in the MADJ and EMMLI programs.
- Act as a source of information and advice on methodologies and research procedures as well as act as a research mentor to other members of the Future Project team, including Innovators in Residence.
- Foster interest in high impact media viability research projects., internally and externally
- Working with the Grants Administrator contribute to writing research progress reports and help prepare progress report on research to the funding agency
- Ensure adherence to the University's research policy
- Seek ethical clearance from the University's Ethics Committee where necessary
- To take lead responsibility for resolving problems affecting the delivery of research projects and for planning and implementing future research projects that emerge from the current project
- To undertake any other duties relevant to the programme of research and the Futures Project.
- A Master's degree or a recently earned PhD in media/communication-related studies or law, art or science field. Candidates nearing completion of their doctoral dissertation may also be considered. Key areas of expertise sought include media economics (business modelling for media viability), media innovation and/or media governance.
- Evidence of developing a track record of internationally excellent research worthy of publication in highly-ranked, peer reviewed academic journals, commensurate with the candidate's career stage.
- Familiarity with the social science literature on media economics (or related field), media viability, media monitoring, news media and framing effects and media innovation.
- Solid understanding of and experience with advanced statistical modelling is preferred.
Skills & Knowledge:
- At least three (3) years of teaching and or experience in a dynamic research/media organization or at a reputable university
- Demonstrable track record of professional and or academic writing
- Extensive applied research experience
- Participation in at least four externally funded research projects under Principal Investigators.
- Experience as a Principal Investigator is highly desirable.
- Successful experience in applying for grant funding and project completion.
- Experience of converting research into media products that are directed at lay audiences.
- Experience working with incubation services.
Personal Attributes, Skills & Competencies
- Qualitative and Quantitative research skills.
- Ability to maintain a climate that is collegial, that respects and values diversity, that treats faculty, staff and learners/Innovators fairly and that is hospitable to creativity and innovation
- Ability to manage large and complex databases
- Ability to teach complex statistical concepts to non-statisticians
- Good communication, presentation and report writing skills
- Ability to keep up with new technology
- Confidentiality and integrity;
- Team player with excellent interpersonal skills;
- Attention to detail
- Adaptability and reliability
Only short listed candidates will be contacted.
Applications should be submitted latest by March 25, 2019
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