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[Commlist] Call for applications: Postdoctoral Fellowships 2021-2022

Mon Mar 22 20:42:31 GMT 2021

Call for applications
Postdoctoral researcher vacancy
Netlab - Internet Studies and Social Media Lab
School of Communication, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro - UFRJ, Brazil

*Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship *
*on Misinformation and Disinformation Campaigns at Netlab/UFRJ*

*Our Project*
Netlab is a research laboratory on Internet Studies and Social Media at the School of Communication (ECO), Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ) - Brazil, specialized in Online Disinformation Campaigns. We combine traditional social science methods and computational communication approaches. We understand that research into computational communication requires seamless integration of meaningful theoretical questions and background, powerful statistical tools and efficient computing algorithms. Researchers in our lab are working to unravel the intricate mechanisms behind burgeoning computational communication phenomena by collecting and analyzing online data on an unprecedented scale, bringing new life to old ideas, and new ideas to social life.

*Main Research Topics*
Netlab is seeking to appoint Post-doctoral Research Fellows to work on the interplay between misinformation, disinformation, news, and social media, with an emphasis on public opinion on at least one of these topics:

1. Civil society and social movements
2. Politics and elections
3. Climate change, land use, and environmental issues
4. Science and health

We welcome postdoctoral submissions that further the understanding, development, and application of computational methods in disinformation research. Computational methods include (but are not limited to) methods such as text analysis, topic modeling, social/semantic network analysis, online experiments, machine learning, visual analysis and agent-based modeling and simulations. Computational methods can be applied to “big data” and social media, or online behavior data, but can also be used to provide a more sophisticated understanding of “small data” or for theoretical explorations.

*Selection Criteria*
The successful candidates must have a completed doctorate degree in any area but with experience in a substantive field of social science, including communication and media studies, sociology, statistics, political science, economy and/or social data science. The ideal candidate must also have familiarity with existing academic work on misinformation, disinformation, public understanding of politics, science and technology, media manipulation and propaganda, news media, online platforms, and digital media.

Excellent written, editing, and verbal communication skills in English which demonstrate a potential to write and present at an international level are required. Portuguese and/or Spanish language skills are desirable. A record of published work on misinformation, disinformation and social media are very desirable, as well as a detailed knowledge of existing research on misinformation, public understanding of news, politics, elections, environmental issues and its relation to digital media.

*How to Apply?*
We have opened three postdoctoral positions. These are full-time, fixed-term appointments with a desired start date as soon as possible and no later than April 2021 for a one-year research fellowship. The individual appointed will be working with other researchers; postdoctoral fellows; Ph.D., master, and undergraduate students; and with the principal investigator behind the project, Professor R. Marie Santini, Head of the Netlab research team.

Grant: R$4.100,00 per month (one-year fellow). This is a full-time, one-year position with the option of a second-year extension based on demonstrated performance.

The closing date for applications is 11 pm on Monday, 12th April 2021 (GMT -3, Brazilian Standard Time). Candidates are required to send an email to (netlab /at/ <mailto:(netlab /at/>. All emails must use the subject title “Netlab Post-Doctoral Research Fellow” with the following documents attached (files in PDF format):

  * A supporting statement: a cover letter explaining your interest in,
    and experience with, the Netlab research agenda (written in
    English). The candidate must choose and indicate in the letter one
    of the areas below to work with: 1) civil society and social
    movements; 2) politics and elections; 3) climate change, land use
    and environmental issues; 4) science and health.
  * A Research Proposal (written in English) as part of your application
    in a 2- or 3-page project. This proposal is not necessarily a
    commitment to what you will work on at Netlab, but serves as a way
    for the application committee to assess your ability to plan a
    research project.
  * An up-to-date Curriculum Vitae with full academic records (in English).
  * A writing sample of a research paper or working paper (preferably in
    English but can be in Portuguese or in Spanish).
  * Reference letter (with contact information), preferably from an
    academic advisor, co-author, or research peer.

*Postdoctoral Researchers Responsibilities*
The duties of the researchers will be:

  * To work with other team members and the PI on developing
    methodological approaches.
  * To arrange and conduct empirical research and data collection.
  * To work with colleagues on analyzing and interpreting the data.
  * To interpret the results in light of contextual background provided
    by the wider project and other people’s research.
  * To liaise with other team members, the PI, and other partners on
    getting advice and input on the research design, data analysis, and
  * To develop academic publications and other project output based on
    the research done, working closely with other postdoctoral
    researchers and the PI to finalize output.
  * To prepare a range of presentation materials suitable for external
    events, conferences, meetings, and workshops.
  * To represent the project at external events/conferences, either with
    the PI, postdoctoral researchers, or alone.
  * To develop ideas for further research (including ideas for
    generating research funds) and to present detailed research
    proposals to the principal investigator for future work in the
    Netlab area.
  * To work with other team members, the project coordinators, the
    principal investigator and Netlab partners (such as technology
    developers, companies, start-up partners, etc.) on other aspects of
    the wider project, to develop innovation and technology, and work
    with the rest of the Netlab staff as part of the everyday life of
    the laboratory.
  * To teach undergraduate and graduate classes under the PI’s
    supervision and coordinate internal workshops and study groups with
    Netlab staff.
  * To organize and coordinate Netlab external events, workshops, Summer
    and Winter Schools (2021-2022).


*Job title *


Postdoctoral Research Fellow



Federal University of Rio de Janeiro

*Division *


School of Communication and The Brazilian Institute of Information, Science and Technology

*Graduate Program*


PPGCI - Graduate Program in Information Science -

*Location *


Netlab - Internet and Social Media Research Lab

*Position modality*


Remote work



R$4.100,00 per month (one-year fellow).

*Hours *


Full time (40 hours per week)

*Contract type *



*Reporting to *


Dr. R. Marie Santini (ECO/UFRJ)

*Research topics*


1) civil society and social movements; OR  2) politics and elections; OR 3) climate change, land use, and environmental issues; OR 4) science and health.

*Principal Investigator and Supervisor*


Dr. R. Marie Santini (ECO/UFRJ). <>

*Laboratory website* <>

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