Come join the team!

By the end of next month (September 2015) I’ll know who will be in my new work family. Not only will I join an exciting new research project, but the line-up of the project team will be completed when we hire the final four.

The Wellcome Trust has funded a major 5-year project on the cultural history of Britain’s National Health Service in the run-up to its 70th anniversary.

The NHS has been the subject of several major political and policy histories. Astonishingly, however, given the sheer scale of its impacts on local and regional communities, and on Britain’s national and international identity, the cultural history of this key institution of post-war British life remains largely undeveloped. There is no history that addresses the realm of meaning, feelings, and representation, and none that responds to Nigel Lawson’s striking observation that ‘the National Health Service is the closest thing the English have to a religion’.

The nature, meaning and implication of the British ‘belief’ in the NHS is being investigated by Principal Investigators Dr Roberta Bivins and Professor Mathew Thomson, with me assisting them as a Research Fellow. The rest of the project team will be decided with the appointment of another four 3-year fellows – and we’re accepting applications now!


Given the nature of the project – approaching a familiar topic in new ways – we’re keen to see applications from those both in the established (medical) history field and those coming from elsewhere. For all of these positions, the deadline for applications is Monday 7 September, interviews during the week commencing Monday 21 September and the anticipated start date will be 1 January 2016.

We’re looking to hire two full-time Research Fellows to conduct primarily archival research that in some way explores the key themes and research questions of the project. Applications should include an outline (no more than 650 words) of how you would do this. You can find more details here.

We’re also looking to hire two Research Fellows (one full-time, one at 0.8 fte) who will have a particular focus on the public engagement side of the project, making use of either historical materials and artefacts or oral history. More details on these positions can be found here.

Those interested are welcome to contact me or either of the Principal Investigators with any queries.


Note: The University of Warwick is not in Warwick but Coventry. Staff live typically in Coventry, Leamington Spa and Kenilworth. I’ve never met anyone who works at the University of Warwick and lives in Warwick.


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