UPDATE: This call is now closed.

I am looking for a PhD student to work with me on designing interventions for work-life balance in the gig economy. This is a fully funded PhD studentship.

If you are interested or know someone who would be, please read below and share. 

About the project

The PhD will explore how to support gig-economy workers in achieving better work-life balance that will ultimately improve their wellbeing and help them be more efficient at getting things done. Work-life balance is a topic that concerns many but very little work has focused on understanding best practices for supporting people in getting things done whilst maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

These issues are particularly challenging in the gig economy, where the working context and conditions may vary considerably between jobs. Platform workers do not have the same support that office workers can rely on (e.g., training, HR offices and line managers). Similarly, for content creators on social media their personal life often becomes their job (for example, by monetising daily vlogs), further blurring those work-home boundaries and leading to stress and other mental health issues. Existing practical resources for managing work-life balance are limited, mostly rely on localised interventions, and their efficacy is not well understood.

About the studentship

Applications are invited for a fully-funded PhD studentship in the area of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) for Digital Living, to work with Dr Marta Cecchinato in the Department of Computer and Information Science.

The studentship is available to Students Worldwide, and covers full fees and a full stipend, paid for three years at RCUK rates (for 2018/9, this is £14,777 pa).

About the environment

The successful applicant will join the growing multidisciplinary collective of HCI researchers at Northumbria University, NORTHLab, one of the UK’s largest and most prolific communities of HCI researchers from Computer Science, Psychology and Design. In addition, the department of Computer and Information Science, where this PhD project would be based, has its own HCI group, NorSC, that meets weekly to discuss projects and research. We are a very social and friendly group!

You will become an active member of our vibrant research community and will be supported to develop your career through publication of your research and international conference attendance.

Eligibility criteria:

  • Academic excellence of the proposed student i.e. 2:1 (or equivalent GPA from non-UK universities [preference for 1st class honours]); or a Masters (preference for Merit or above); or APEL evidence of substantial practitioner achievement.
  • Appropriate IELTS score, if required.
  • Applicants cannot apply for this funding if currently engaged in Doctoral study at Northumbria or elsewhere.

Candidates will have backgrounds in either Computer or Information Science, HCI, Design (industrial or interaction), Psychology or the Social Sciences (other areas will be considered provided candidates can demonstrate sufficient interest/experience in HCI). Candidates with experience in conducting fieldwork or with maker skills will be preferred.

Northumbria University is an equal opportunities provider and in welcoming applications for studentships from all sectors of the community, we strongly encourage applications from women and under-represented groups.

How to apply

You can find details on how to apply here. You will need to apply using this page.

You will need to include a research proposal of approximately 1,000 words.
Make sure you use this reference in your application: RDF19/EE/CIS/CECCHINATO

  • Deadline for applications: Friday 25 January 2019 
  • Start Date: 1 October 2019 

Feel free to contact me for informal inquiries.


To read the full ad on FindAPhD, visit: https://www.findaphd.com/search/ProjectDetails.aspx?PJID=103702

Cover image by Janne Iivonen



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