The SMC needs a new full-time Research Assistant. Accepting Applications NOW (to start late-July 2021)

The Microsoft Research Social Media Collective, based in the Cambridge, MA lab location, consists of Nancy Baym, Tarleton Gillespie, and Mary L. Gray, as well as postdoctoral researchers, faculty visitors, and Ph.D. interns affiliated with MSR New England. We are looking for a full-time Research Assistant who will take over from the current RA and work directly with Nancy Baym, Tarleton Gillespie, and Mary L. Gray.

An appropriate candidate will be a self-starter who is passionate and knowledgeable about the social and cultural implications of technology. Strong skills in writing, organization and academic research are essential, as are time-management and multi-tasking. Minimal qualifications are a BA or equivalent degree in a humanities or social science discipline and some qualitative research training. A Masters degree is preferred but we also consider candidates with Bachelor’s degrees and substantial relevant research experience.

Job responsibilities may include:

– Sourcing and curating relevant literature and research materials
– Developing literature reviews and/or creating and managing annotated bibliographies
– Coding ethnographic and interview data
– Copyediting manuscripts
– Working with academic journals on themed sections
– Assisting with research project data management and event organization

The RA will also have opportunities to collaborate on ongoing projects. While publication is not a guarantee, the RA may have the opportunity to co-author papers while at MSR. This full-time position will be adopting Microsoft’s Hybrid Work policies, where employees can now work from home up to 50 percent of the time. It is a 12-month position with a possible option for an extension. The position pays hourly with flexible daytime hours. The start date will ideally be on or soon before July 23, although flexibility may be possible for the right candidate.

This position is perfect for emerging scholars planning to apply to PhD programs in Communication, Media Studies, Sociology, Anthropology, Information Studies, History, Philosophy, STS and Critical Data Studies, and related fields who want to develop their research skills and area expertise before entering a graduate program. Current New England-based MA/PhD students are welcome to apply provided they can commit to 40 hours of work per week.

To apply, please send an email to Mary ( with the subject “RA Application” and include the following attachments:

– One-page (single-spaced) personal statement, including a description of research experience and training, interests, and professional goals
– CV or resume
– Writing sample (preferably a literature review or a scholarly-styled article)
– Links to public online presence (e.g., blog, homepage, Twitter, journalistic endeavors, etc.)
– The names and email addresses of two recommenders

Be sure to include your last name in file names of all documents you attach.

We will begin reviewing applications on June 1. We hope to make a hiring decision no later than June 30.

We regret that because this is a time-limited contract position, we can only consider candidates who are already legally authorized to work in the United States.

Please feel free to ask questions about the position in the blog comments.