PhD hD Fellowship 2017 - Exploring Informal processes in the Workplace, University of Worcester, UK

Publish Date: Mar 16, 2017

Deadline: Apr 28, 2017

About the fellowhsip 


The distinction between formal and informal organisational processes has been an overarching theme within the careers literature for many years (Roethlisberger & Dickson, 1939). Formal processes are defined by structure, policies, procedures, strategies and objectives designed by managers that can be assessed objectively and changed relatively rapidly (Gulati & Puranam, 2009). In contrast, informal processes refer to the social, subjective structures that influence how employees work together, comprising of behaviours, attitudes, interactions, norms and networks that are embedded in the culture of organisations (de Toni & Nonino, 2010; Wyatt & Silvester, 2015). These concepts are becoming increasingly important to individual perceptions of career development and success, as the experience of both formal and informal processes are thought to be key factors that will influence an individual’s willingness to participate in career development activities (Kim, 2005).

Closing date: Friday 28 Apr 2017

Reference number: N/A


The successful candidate will join the Institute of Health and Society, a dynamic, multiprofessional department that has experienced dramatic growth in recent years, particularly in research output. Staff in the Institute contribute to the development of knowledge and practice by engaging in a wide range of research and consultancy activities. Working in collaboration with different disciplines and with other universities, private industry and the public sector, research is always grounded in the aim of achieving real-life benefits.

Director of Studies, Dr Kazia Solowiej, is based in the Institute of Health and Society and has research and supervision expertise in careers, career success and development. The supervisory team includes Professor Jan Francis-Smythe and Dr Catharine Ross who are based in Worcester Business School. Professor Jan Francis-Smythe has research and supervisory expertise in careers and individual differences in the workplace. Dr Catharine Ross has research and supervisory expertise in careers with a particular interest in diversity.

Research School

The Research School is a focal point for all our research students. It provides:

  • day-to-day support for our students, both administrative and practical, through our dedicated team
  • a Research Student Study Space with both PCs and laptop docking station
  • a comprehensive Researcher Development Programme for students and their supervisors
  • a programme of student-led conferences and seminars

Details of the studentship

During the period of your studentship you will receive the following:

  • a tax free bursary of £13,863 for a period of 3 years
  • a fee-waiver for 4 years
  • a laptop
  • use of the Research Student Study Space in the Research School
  • access to the Research Student Support Scheme

Person specification


Applicants should have or be able to evidence:

  • A First or Upper Second class Honours degree in Psychology or other relevant discipline, or expect to receive one by October 2017;
  • A sound understanding of qualitative and quantitative research methods and an interest in occupational psychology and careers;
  • Ability to design research studies;
  • Academic writing skills in English;
  • Ability to organise and meet deadlines;
  • Good interpersonal skills;
  • Ability to work independently and contribute to a team;
  • Commitment and an enthusiastic approach to completing a higher research degree.


  • Education to Masters degree level in Psychology or other relevant discipline;
  • Experience of appropriate research methods and skills;
  • Ability to travel independently (e.g. for data collection/conference attendance).

As part of its mission statement the University is committed to widening participation for its higher degrees. Although it is desirable for candidates to hold a Masters degree, the University is happy to accept applications from candidates with relevant professional qualifications and work related experience.

For more information click "Further official information" below.

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Host Countries

United Kingdom