CoLED Postdoctoral Fellowship in Ethnographic Design

[Please check back in fall 2016 for future CoLED fellowship positions]

Application Closing date: 05/12/2015
Job Posting Expiration: 05/12/2015

Title of the position: Postdoctoral Fellow in Ethnographic Design
School or Division: Social Sciences
Academic Department: Communication
Center or ORU: none

Disciplinary Specialty of Research:
This fellowship focuses on ethnographic design, a topic of interest to a wide spectrum of academic disciplines. While we expect most candidates to come from the social sciences, we will entertain applications from the arts and humanities, and other disciplines if they demonstrate an engagement with and dedication to ethnographic method.

Description of the Position:
The Studio for Ethnographic Design at the University of California, San Diego invites applications for a postdoctoral fellow who will contribute to developing a new initiative for ethnographic inquiry. This initiative, the UC Collaborative for Ethnographic Design (CoLED), is an interdisciplinary project that is housed at UCSD and links six University of California campuses (Berkeley, Davis, Irvine, Los Angeles, Santa Cruz, and San Diego), tying together scholars from a wide variety of disciplinary backgrounds who are thinking critically about the practice of ethnography as a method, and the changing conditions of its production, forms and techniques. The collaboratory will also serve as a means to improve pedagogical agendas for graduate student training in ethnographic practice.

The fellow’s primary responsibilities include conceptualizing, programming and developing proposals for a public conference on the future of ethnographic research scheduled for fall 2016. Fellows will also participate in the initiative’s ongoing schedule of activities, which include thematic practicums elaborating various aspects of ethnography – from initial project design and collaboration in research to critical consideration of the publics with whom and for whom we conduct our research. Teaching is not required, leaving the fellow with time to work on independent projects, which ideally will overlap with the mission of the initiative. This position will afford the candidate latitude to conduct a wide range of activities related to the practice of ethnography; it will also place the candidate at the center of a network of scholars at the forefront of ethnographic design.

Qualifications Required and Preferred Academic Background:
Applicants must hold a PhD or equivalent and be able to demonstrate a sustained engagement with innovative ethnographic methods, as both practice and object of analytical inquiry. Useful experience might include event planning and successful grant writing. Again, discipline is not as important as focus on ethnographic method and design.

18 months with the possibility of extension. While collaboration and research would begin on July 1, 2015, we would not expect the fellow to be in residence in San Diego until September 1, 2015.

Salary: $42,840/yr with benefits. For information on benefits package, see

Appointment Length:
18 months with the possibility of extension.

Application Procedure:
Send applications via email to Elana Zilberg at Please use “SED Postdoc Application” in the subject line.

All applicants should submit:

(1) a CV (maximum five pages),

(2) a cover letter that briefly explains your research and its relationship with ethnography, demonstrated organizational skills, and successful proposal writing experience (maximum 3 pages),

(3) a statement discussing the practice of ethnography both as theory and as a method, and your contributions to current innovations in advancing the method to meet the challenges of the changing conditions of field based research (maximum 2 pages)

(4) one writing sample that demonstrates the applicant’s use of and engagement with ethnography, and

(5) a statement detailing how their presence would contribute to diversity on UCSD’s campus. (For information on this statement, see

Letters of Recommendation: The candidate should request letters of recommendation from two referees. These letters should be sent via email to Elana Zilberg at Please ask your reviewers to use “Recommendation for candidates full name” in the subject line.