At a turning point in my life, I applied to study for a part-time MSc in ‘Information Systems Development’ at Edinburgh Napier University. Apart from meeting my wife and becoming vegan, this is probably the best thing I’ve ever done. Now there are two PhD studentships available, so you can join me at the university’s Centre for Social Informatics.
During the summer of my first year, I researched internet use by Scotland’s community councils. For my MSc dissertation, I researched the reasons behind the barriers to such ‘digital democracy’, then went on to do some action research about improving digital communications in digital democracy, and to create a community councils web-map. Next, I developed workshops to develop community councils’ online work. All of this was , very ably supervised by Peter Cruickshank. Most recently, Peter and I have been investigating information literacy in local democracy.
Along the way, I contributed to practical library and archives research, led by professor Hazel Hall, to some work on information architecture, got involved with participatory budgeting and open government, and contributed to library and information science projects. All of this has been fun, challenging and above all supported by my colleagues at the Centre for Social Informatics. They are talented, intelligent and caring people (their support has been invaluable during some very trying times) who research a variety of complementary areas:
- democratic digital engagement
- information policy
- information seeking behaviour and use
- Kknowledge management
- the information society
- online communities
- open data and open government.
And now there are two opportunities to join us. Links are in the PDF graphic above, and here:
- Work-based learning environments for fostering industry-relevant skills and optimal economic performance, supervised by Dr Laura Muir and Dr Colin Smith
- Career information literacy and decision making behaviours of young people, supervised by Professor Hazel Hall and Dr Pete Robertson.
Lyndsey Middleton, who is currently writing up her ESRC-SDS funded PhD study within the Centre for Social Informatics, has also blogged about these opportunities. To find out more about her experience as a student supported by one of these awards, please see: Come and study in the wonderful Centre for Social Informatics of Edinburgh Napier University! You can also read about our most recent PhD graduate Dr John Mowbray, who completed his ESRC-SDS study last year.
For further information about the current opportunities to join the Centre for Social Informatics as a PhD student on one of the projects described above please contact Dr Laura Muir (L.Muir@napier.ac.uk) or Professor Hazel Hall (firstname.lastname@example.org).
(with thanks to Lyndsey for the post-title and Hazel for some of the text.