Postdoctoral Researcher, USC Mellon Humanities and the University of the Future

USC Mellon Humanities and the University of the Future Postdoctoral Research Position

The USC Mellon Humanities and the University of the Future Program seeks applications for a two-year Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in any area of the humanities from scholars with interests in academic administration. The annual salary will be $75,000, plus benefits and a yearly $2000 research/travel allowance.

The Program seeks to address the need for more humanities scholars in academic administration by opening potential new career paths. Each postdoctoral fellow will spend one semester working closely with the divisional dean; another with one of the college deans (such as the college dean of undergraduate education or the college dean of graduate education); a third in either the media office, the Academy in the Public Square, or Advancement; and a fourth semester free of any responsibilities to enable fellow the chance to work full-time on revising and publishing their research. The fellow will attend meetings and contribute to policy decisions, working as a liaison between dean-level offices and faculty members, attending and participating in scheduling and staffing meetings, meeting with potential donors and program officers from foundations, and advancing the mission of USC Dornsife. During the time of the fellowship, the Divisional Dean for the Humanities will serve as a mentor and provide assistance for the fellow’s scholarship, including support for grant applications, review of book proposals, and reading draft articles or chapters of works-in-progress. Our goal is to provide mentoring so that the shift to greater administrative responsibilities does not come at the expense of research productivity.

To apply for the 2020–2022 cohort, candidates must have received their Ph.D. no earlier than July 1, 2015 and must have completed all requirements for their doctoral degree by July 1, 2020.

Applicants’ research and teaching must be based in the humanities, including but not limited to American studies, art history, classics, comparative literature, English and non-English literatures (including creative writing), ethnic studies, gender and sexuality studies, history, philosophy, and religion. Proposals are welcome from applicants with interdisciplinary and cross-disciplinary projects. Proposals may focus on any period and geographic region.

Applicants will be evaluated based on their academic accomplishments, the significance and intellectual merit of their research project, and their potential to contribute to the goals of the Division of the Humanities at USC Dornsife.

Applicants should submit:

  • A cover letter, up to three pages single-spaced.
    The letter should indicate the applicant’s primary field of research and an explanation of interest in academic administration. It should also outline in brief the research the applicant intends to complete at USC. Scholars working across disciplines may indicate the various fields their research addresses and, if desired, additional possible departmental affiliations. Dornsife is home to multiple institutes, centers, and programs in the humanities (see We encourage applicants to indicate interest in affiliation with a center or institute in the cover letter. If the dissertation has not been completed, the letter should detail its progress, timeline to completion, and scheduled or proposed defense date should the fellowship be awarded.
  • A CV, not to exceed 3 pages
  • A writing sample (such as one dissertation chapter or article)


Please submit the cover letter, cv, and writing sample as an attached single pdf file via email to [Do not include links to googledrives or similar on-line platforms for retrieval of documents.]

  • Candidates should separately request two academic referees to email letters of recommendation directly to .

Candidates are responsible for ensuring that the pdf document and application information is complete upon submission. Once submitted, applications and documents cannot be changed.

The deadline to submit all application materials is Friday, December 13, 2019, noon PST.

USC is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, protected veteran status, disability, or any other characteristic protected by law or USC policy.

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