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Medical Careers in the Victorian and Edwardian Post Office. Part of the Wellcome-funded project Addressing Health: Morbidity, Mortality and Occupational Health in the Victorian and Edwardian Post Office.

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Monday, January 06, 2020
  • Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
    Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

Project Description

This PhD is funded by the Wellcome Trust and is a full-time studentship for 36 months. It is an integral part of Addressing Health and is linked specifically to developing a clearer understanding of the career trajectories of doctors employed by the Post Office. This studentship will focus on identifying the medical doctors employed by the Post Office and their professional backgrounds. It will identify change over time and between places. It will link these findings to the analysis of morbidity and mortality that is the focus of the Addressing Health project. The findings from this Ph D will help to identify any systematic differences in patterns of sickness absence and health related retirement arising from variations in medical practice.

The research will draw on primary archives containing correspondence about medical provision in the Post Office and link this to entries in the Medical Register, which is available at the Wellcome Library in London and also online. It will build up the professional characteristics of doctors employed by the Post Office and explore the significance of that employment in relation to other sources of employment. It will involve detailed case studies of individual Post Office doctors who were particularly important figures in their respective fields, including the chief medical officers.

The research will adopt a prosopographical approach to understanding the individual career trajectories of Post Office doctors, and will require an awareness of statistical techniques to evaluate the ways in which diagnoses made by individual doctors might have influenced reporting of ill health in the workforce. The main body of evidence is located in London or online, but other relevant papers might require travel to archives outside London.

For more information, please see the project website https://addressinghealth.org.uk

The PhD student will be a full member of the Addressing Health research team and will attend team meetings on a regular basis. They will work closely in collaboration with other members of the team and volunteers at The Postal Museum. They will be expected to write short blogs for the project website and to present their work at national and international conferences. They will also be involved in co-writing book chapters or articles for publication in peer reviewed journals as well as developing sole authored work. They will be assisted in this by members of the project team.

The successful candidate will be supervised by Dr Douglas Brown (Kingston University), Prof. Nicola Shelton (University College London) and Prof. Nigel Walford (Kingston University), together with a post-doctoral research assistant recruited to the project.

Expected start date: 2 March 2020

How to apply: Application forms can be requested by emailing with the email subject “Addressing Health PhD“

Entry requirements:
A first class or 2:1 honours degree (or equivalent overseas qualification) and a Master’s degree in a relevant social sciences or humanities discipline (e.g. history, medical history, historical geography, sociology), with at least a high Merit and showing evidence of capacity to work at Distinction level.

Skills required:
• Experience of working with historical archives is desirable.
• A proven ability to conduct independent research.
• A proven record of working well in teams and a commitment to working collaboratively with colleagues and others inside and outside of the university.
• Previous experience of medical history would be an advantage.
• Applicants must be prepared to travel as the research will involve data collection in different parts of the UK.

English Language: If you are not from an English speaking country, or have not studied at an English university before, you will need to show proof of internet-based IELTS score 7.0 overall with a minimum of 6.5 in each element (or equivalent qualification). Please see these pages for further information http://www.kingston.ac.uk/international/studying-at-kingston/language-requirements/


Funding Notes

Home/EU tuition fees plus a stipend equivalent to £22,278 per annum, for 3 years. International applicants will need to show they can fund the difference between the Home and International tution fee.


Related Subjects

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FTE Category A staff submitted: 10.00

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