Research Associate

Help answer questions and identify good practices about open, collective and participatory data governance

We are no longer accepting applicants for this role


£100 - £300/day depending on location and experience


Employed/freelance contract until end of February 2023
(with possibility of renewal)

We are recruiting a part-time Research Associate for Connected by Data on a short-term (renewable) contract.

You will be working with our Director of Research to develop accessible, rigorous and compelling evidence on the case for, and practicalities of, giving communities a powerful voice in data governance. Your research will support our wider strategy to transform data governance narratives, policy and practice.

You will be contributing to one or more of a number of our strands of research work, which may include working on:

  • Registry of participatory data governance practice: carrying out desk research to populate a structured case study database (based loosely on the participedia schema) with details of how organisations across the world have engaged communities in shaping data governance;
  • Shared literature database: identifying, reviewing, summarising and curating academic and policy research on collective and participatory approaches to data governance;
  • Data narratives development: building on ongoing work to understand how the impacts of data are discussed in media narratives, and carrying out primary research to identify and support the development of stories that demonstrate the importance of understanding collective impacts of data collection, sharing and use;
  • Research community building: helping identify researchers interested in collective and participatory data governance, convene events, or attend and write-up key events and conversations.
  • Policy research: contributing to policy analysis and briefings, in particular in relation to the progression of the UK’s Data Protection and Digital Information Bill.
  • Knowledge Synthesis: Reviewing our existing open and reflective learning published through Weeknotes and other knowledge outputs, and helping develop summaries and synthesis resources.

The exact focus of your work will be agreed with the Research Director, with regular opportunities to reflect, review and refine the work to fit your skill set, respond to organisational priorities, and support your own professional development.

Who are you?

As our Research Associate you should have:

  • Demonstrated qualitative and quantitative research skills, including literature reviews, case study development, interviews, surveys, content and thematic analysis, data and statistical analysis
  • Interest and experience researching hot topics in data, digital, AI and democratic participation, preferably in relation to data governance
  • Clear written and verbal communication for public and policy audiences
  • A commitment to collaborative working, including across organisations
  • Ability to flexibly manage a workload that includes both responsive short term tasks, and longer term projects
  • Commitment to investing in your own personal and professional development
  • Preferably, experience of working across a range of countries and contexts

You might have formal research qualifications, or be coming from an applied background where you have developed research skills ‘on the job’.

We have an organisational commitment to working in the open, sharing our work and reflections as we go through weeknotes and regular blogging / resource sharing. We will support you to join in this practice.

How do we work?

You will be joining a fully remote UK-based small team. We have daily communication on Discord, and regular team calls. We use tools like Google Docs, AirTable and Zotero for our day-to-day work.

We will agree to regular working hours where you overlap with the Director of Research, and you will have a degree of flexible working around this.

Depending on your location and preference we may offer you an employed position, or an equivalent freelance consultancy contract.

Our employment contract provides for:

  • 5 weeks (25 days pro rata) holiday + bank holidays
  • 3 days company-wide holiday between Christmas and New Year
  • 5% employer pension contributions

We operate a Bring Your Own Device policy for associates.

What are the next steps?

If you are interested in this role, please send a CV and covering letter to by 8am GMT on Monday 31st October. The cover letter should describe your skills and experience against the criteria listed above, and why you are interested in the role.

If you have any questions about the role, or want to chat about it before applying, please get in touch with

If you are not certain that you meet all the criteria, or want to explore a different working pattern, please consider applying anyway; there is some flexibility in the way this role could work.

We would particularly like to see applications from people who are under-represented in current debates about data.

Working hours

7.5 hour days
7 - 12 days a month


Fully remote
able to work hours overlapping UK time-zone

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