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Postdoctoral Research Assistant in Human Osteoarchaeology
Whiteknights Reading UK

Job reference: SRF26230

Location: Whiteknights Reading UK

Closing date: 30/11/2018

Job live date: 31/10/2018

Salary: £30,395 per annum

Employment type: AR-Research

Department: School of Archaeology Geography & Environmental Science

Division: Archaeology

Hours per week: 1.00 FTE

Employment Basis/Type: Full-time,Fixed-term

A fixed term postdoctoral appointment of 24 months to start on 15 January 2019 is available to contribute to the ERC-funded MENTICA project: Middle East Neolithic Transition – Integrated Community Approaches. The successful applicant will work with Prof Roger Matthews and colleagues at the University of Reading to investigate communities of the dead: demography, diet and disease and living conditions and sustainability during this major transition from mobile hunting-gathering to more sedentary agricultural.

The primary roles of the PDRA in Human Osteoarchaeology will be to analyse assemblages of archaeological human remains in order to investigate human mobility within regions of the Eastern Fertile Crescent (EFC), including population stability and variability; to analyse variability in Early Neolithic diet histories; to investigate the impact of changing living conditions, including sedentism and increased proximity to animals, on human health in the EFC, and impacts on gender and age groups; to examine the diversity of burial practices and how it informs on individual and collective identity; to analyse the Epipalaeolithic-Early Neolithic (EP-EN) EFC human remains evidence within the context of burial practices, diet and mobility of the EP-EN Middle East and beyond; and to integrate the food-ways analysis from the stable isotope studies conducted on the human remains with the plant and animal evidence, to articulate the trajectories and sustainability of EP-EN food procurement and consumption.


You will have:

  • A PhD in human osteoarchaeology, palaeopathology or a related field
  • Knowledge and experience of a range of techniques in the excavation, identification and analysis of human remains, and demography, diet, disease and living conditions
  • Extensive experience of archaeological fieldwork and, in particular, the excavation  and taphonomy of complex bioarchaeological assemblages, preferably at Neolithic sites in Southwest Asia
  • Excellent IT skills in the use of relevant software packages for complex data analysis
  • The ability to work flexibly to meet the changing needs of the role and to meet tight deadlines
  • The ability to interact professionally with a wide range of researchers, officials, the media and the public


Interviews will be held on  12 December 2018

Informal contact details

Alternative informal contact details

Contact role:

Principal Investigator

Contact role:


Contact name:

Roger Matthews

Contact name:

Wendy Matthews

Contact phone:

0118 378 7564

Contact phone:

0118 378 6788

Contact email:

Contact email:

The University is committed to having a diverse and inclusive workforce, is a Stonewall Diversity and Global Diversity Champion, and supports the principles of the Race Equality Charter and Athena SWAN.  Applications for job-share, part-time and flexible working arrangements are welcomed and will be considered in line with business needs.


The closing date for this job has now passed.


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