[GeoHumanities SIG] PhD on History of Telephony and Its Socio-cultural Impacts (August 1st)

Reades, Jonathan jonathan.reades at kcl.ac.uk
Fri Jun 26 14:13:07 CEST 2015

Hi Everyone, 

Having reviewed the types of applications that we received by the original deadline for our UK-funded post, we’ve decided to re-advertise the position with a revised description and deadline (August 1st, so plenty of time this time but still open to UK & EU residents only, I’m afraid) in the hopes that this will make it more attractive and accessible for prospective PhD applicants. We’re still keen to share this as widely as possible in the hopes of attracting outstanding candidates for what many seem to feel is a really exciting project. Please feel free to share widely. So, without further ado...

History of Telephony: A Funded Collaborative Doctoral Partnership Award with King’s College London, British Telecommunications plc. (BT) and the Science Museum Group

Applications are invited for an AHRC-funded doctoral student to join King’s College London, BT, and the Science Museum Group in late September 2015 or early January 2016 to investigate the impact of the telephone landline network on British society and culture(s).

The project is informed by the rise of the Internet and social media, the interest this has generated in understanding how networks grow and evolve over time, and how this can be connected to wider changes in society. The comprehensive historical and technical archive managed by BT represents a unique resource for researchers, grounding an analysis of ‘impact’ in an understanding of the network as an object materialised through a range of artefacts: from physical cables and switches, to abstract statistics on usage by homes and businesses.

The project objectives are:

·  To produce new histories of network development and in so doing, to contribute to contemporary debates about the cultural effects of a network society.
·  To develop an open access data set documenting the evolution of the landline phone network.
·  To use this data as a platform to examine the changing character/characteristics of the network.
·  To explore the (uneven) impact of this connectivity on local communities, identities and cultures through, for instance, the spreading of news and coordination of social movements and organisations.
·  To support the development of interactive online resources for Science Museum Group & BT Archives audiences.

The student is free to specify the sociocultural impact that they wish to study in conjunction with their work on network evolution, aligning the project’s aims with their own interests.

We expect applicants with a background in history, geography, archaeology, science & technology studies, or digital humanities to be particularly suited for this project. Applicants with a demonstrable interest in the use of computers in historical research are strongly encouraged to apply; however, selection will be based on the applicant’s capacity to undertake original research and BT can provide assistance in the design of online interactive resources.

Applications are due August 1st, and for more information please see: http://bit.ly/1BwRkHh and http://www.findaphd.com/search/ProjectDetails.aspx?PJID=62797&LID=928 



Jon Reades

Room K7.37, Strand Campus
Department of Geography
email: jonathan.reades at kcl.ac.uk
mobile: 07976.987.392
landline: 0207.848.1372

Office hours: 
By appointment outside of Terms 1 & 2

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