Urban Systems Laboratory
Imperial College London
(with apologies for cross posting)
PhD studentship: An interdisciplinary framework for disaggregate assessment of productivity and
well-being impacts of digital technologies on workers in mobile settings (ITINERANT).
Applications are invited for a PhD studentship working in the area of the assessment of the
productivity and well-being impacts of digital technologies on workers in mobile settings. The
studentship is supported by the London Interdisciplinary Social Science Doctoral Training
Partnership (www.liss-dtp.ac.uk), which is funded by the UK Econmic and Social Research Council
(ESRC), and will be undertaken under the supervision of Prof. John Polak and Dr Jacek Pawlak.
Background: The rapid development of new mobile devices and omnipresent connectivity has led to
the increasing decoupling of work (and other activities) from specific locations. New cultures of
work have emerged, especially strong among knowledge workers, that exploit non-traditional
settings, including public spaces and transport modes, with the aim of improving productivity and
well-being by the better alignment of tasks to productive times and spaces. While social science
has amassed a significant body of descriptive evidence relating to these practices and their
productivity and well-being implications, this knowledge remains largely detached from the
quantitative and predictive approaches used in the appraisal and evaluation of digital and physical
The aim of this studentship, which will be undertaken in collaboration with Cisco Systems and
Transport for Greater Manchester, is to bridge this gap and develop new ways of embedding
qualitative and quantitative understandings of the impacts of digitisation and connectivity on
productivity and well-being into the quantitative frameworks used for infrastructure appraisal and
evaluation. The research will involve collaboration between the Urban Systems Laboratory at
Imperial College London and Cisco´s innovation team (Cisco CREATE) and Transport for Greater
Manchester on a set of case studies including the UK´s largest Internet of Things City Demonstrator
project, CityVerve, in Manchester.
Academic requirements: Candidates should have a first degree at first class level (or upper second
class with clear evidence of the capacity for first class work), preferably in economics and with a
strong quantitative component. Candidates will normally also have an appropriate Master's degree
in a relevant social science subject (at distinction or high merit level) or equivalent qualification.
Industrial experience is not a pre-requisite, but would be advantageous. Candidates should also
have good software and programming skills. An interest in cities and smart technologies would also
Eligibility: The Studentship is only available to candidates who satisfy ESRC's residency
requirements, which are set out in the link below:
The Award: The studentship will cover the full cost of Home/EU fees for and provide an annual
tax-free stipend of up to £18,796 per annum, for 3 years, in addition to a generous technology
training and communications tool package from Cisco. As part of your award, you will also be able
to apply for additional funds from LISS DTP´s Research Training Support Grant to help cover some
of the costs of training, fieldwork, travel and more.
How to apply: Candidates should complete the LISS DTP CASE Studentships application form,
which is available at the link below:
and email the completed form plus the following material to: [log in to unmask]
* a CV
* copies of academic transcripts for all relevant degrees
* 2 references (either 2 academic references or 1 academic reference and 1 professional
This Case for Support form is due by 12th April 2017, 17:00 GMT. No extensions will be given.
Selection: Short-listed candidates may be invited for interview.
Enquries regarding the application process should be made to [log in to unmask], Tel: +44-(0)207-
Enquiries regarding the academic content of the research should be made to Prof. John Polak
([log in to unmask]).
Prof. John Polak
Director, Urban Systems Laboratory
Imperial College London