European Research Council

Research Grant - Lugus 828173

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    Universidade de Coimbra
    First Stage Researcher (R1)
    15/09/2022 23:00 - Europe/London
    Portugal › Coimbra
    H2020 / ERC
    Grant Agreement 948609




University of Coimbra opens a call for a research fellowship, in the framework of the project “EOLinPLACE - Choice of where we die: a classification reform to discern diversity in individual end of life pathways” (Grant Agreement number: 948609), financed by the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme – Starting Grants,in the following conditions:


Scientific area: Health Sciences, Palliative Care.


Skills/Qualifications/Admission requirements:

Applicants holding bachelor and master degrees in life and/or social sciences relevant to the project's research area (i.e. palliative and end-of-life care) enrolled in a PhD programme or that have fulfilling requirements to attend a PhD programme.


We are seeking a well-organised individual, with proven quantitative research skills, an interest and understanding of the issues in palliative and end of life care research, who holds first degree and master courses on life or social sciences relevant to the field of research of the project. Proficient skills in English and Portuguese, in Microsoft Office, ability to travel abroad, knowledge of research ethics and data protection policies, ability to swiftly familiarize with relevant software (e.g. SPSS/Stata, Endnote), and authorship of peer-reviewed publications are required. Successful experience in health research is desirable, preferably in palliative care, with direct contact with patients and family carers in Portugal, with statistical analysis of large datasets and longitudinal data, and in the context of international projects. The position provides an excellent prospect to a reliable and promising researcher, who works well to tight deadlines and with others in a multicultural environment, to take an important role in an exciting ERC Starting Grant.


Although the recipients must be enrolled in a cycle of studies leading to the attribution of an academic degree, at the time of application it is not necessary for the candidate to have made such an enrollment, and proof of enrollment must be presented until thefellowship is contractualized. Candidates are only required to meet the requirements to enroll in the training offer. If there are candidates already enrolled (including attending a course), they compete on an equal footing with those who are not enrolled.




Work plan/ Objectives:

The successful candidate will conduct R&D activities, supporting the scientific research and the implementation of the work plan of a project aimed to develop a strong foundation for an international classification tool that maps preferred and actual places towards death. The methods include international comparative analysis of classification systems and data on place of death, ethnography, focus groups with patients, carers and others stakeholders, longitudinal and validation studies, which will take place primarily in Portugal, the Netherlands, the United States of America and Uganda. She/he will integrate a group of international and multidisciplinary researchers, working alongside recognised expert leaders in this research field globally. She/he will join an academic group at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Coimbra, with important research outputs in palliative care, and offering opportunities for career development. https://www.uc.pt/en/fmuc/icbr/researchlines/palliative


The project

Dr. Barbara Gomes, Invited Coordinating Researcher at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Coimbra, is leading an ERC Starting Grant: “EOLinPLACE - Choice of where we die: a classification reform to discern diversity in individual end of life pathways”, which started in January 2022. www.eolinplace.com


All humans die, >60% from a chronic disease. Whenever possible, this should happen where that individual feels it is the right place to be, so they feel empowered and safe. We know that most would prefer dying at home but many die in hospital. To help achieve preferences we must dig deeper. Until now, science has failed to capture the dynamics and diversity of preferences and places where people are cared for at the end of life. Current classifications of dying places are incomplete and inconsistent. This project is driven by the vision of reforming the way dying places are classified and understood, refining and shifting the focus from the end-point (place of death) to the pathway that precedes it. The aim is to develop a strong foundation for a pioneering international classification tool that maps preferred and actual places towards death grounded on what they mean for individuals (beyond a purely physical or medical view). To achieve this, we will combine classic methods of developing health classifications with a bottom-up participatory research approach, working with patient and family representatives. First, we will conduct a novel mixed-methods study (ethnography followed by longitudinal study) in four countries covering existing target variation, to explore nuances and commonalities in the experiences of patients with life-threatening conditions and their families. Based on this, we will build a contemporary classification and assess its content validity in focus groups with patients, carers and other stakeholders. We will then test it in varied settings to examine construct validity, reliability, responsiveness, data quality and interpretability. All data will be integrated to deepen understanding of different end of life pathways in caring environments and what influences them. Prompted by earlier discoveries by Dr. Barbara Gomes and her team on preferences and concern with unfit classifications for a fast-growing need in a changed social world with limited care resources, this research project will open new directions in how to care for the dying.

In line with the project aim and objectives, the main duties and responsibilities of the successful candidate for this research fellowship post will be to:

1. Provide academic input and work in specified parts of the project, including protocol design and methods, data collection, analysis and reporting, with a focus on the quantitative components of the project but also contributing to the qualitative components.

2. Conduct literature searches and reviews to inform the project and keeping up to date with developments in the field of palliative care, share this information with colleagues and managers and facilitate best scientific methods for the project.

3. Help ensure all project milestones/deliverables are achieved and reporting is completed and submitted in a timely manner in line with EC and UC requirements.

4. Contribute to data integration and writing of reports.

5. Publish research findings in peer-reviewed journals and aid dissemination activities.

6. Organise, attend and contribute to project meetings.

7. Collaborate with and support other team members and project partners.

8. Support in the different tasks associated with the research activities of the project (such as contact with different interlocutors).

9. Maintain strict confidentiality of any patient / family / staff / other stakeholders information and work under the terms of the General Data Protection Regulation and in line with the Data Management Plan and protocols of the project.

10. Any other duties consistent with the grade of the post. This may include undertaking ad hoc reports and representing the project.

11. Conduct all tasks in agreement with Dr. Barbara Gomes



Regime: The attribution of the fellowship does not generate or entitle a relation of a legal-labour nature, and the fellowship is undertaken in an exclusive dedication regime. The fellowship holder is awarded the Fellowship Statute of the UC, in its current wording, according to the Research Fellowship Holder Statute , and according to the Regulation for Research Fellowships of the Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia, I.P., both in their current wording.


Location: Faculty of Medicine at the University of Coimbra.


Duration: 12 months.


Renewal: Potentially renewable.


Scientific orientation: Dr. Barbara Gomes..


Financial conditions: The amount of the fellowship is € 1.144,64 corresponding to the monthly compensation stipulated in the FCT table (https://www.fct.pt/apoios/bolsas/valores.phtml.en), plus doctoral tuition fees of up to €2,750.00 per year, social security (Seguro Social Voluntário, first level contributions) and personal accidents insurance. The payment will be made by bank transfer. This amount will not be increased during the entire period of the fellowship duration.


Selection methods: Curriculum vitae - CV and interview with candidates scoring more than 40/60 in CV evaluation.


Selection criteria: CV (60%) and interview (40%) with candidates scoring more than 40/60 in CV evaluation.

In the CV evaluation, we will consider the quality of the CV including the first degree and master courses (in life or social sciences relevant to the field of research of the project, i.e. palliative and end of life care), language and computer skills, ability to travel abroad, research skills with a focus on quantitative, authorship of peer-reviewed publications, acquired skills in health research, with particular attention to research in palliative care, with direct contact with patients and family carers in Portugal, with statistical analysis of large datasets and longitudinal data, and in the context of international projects (75%) and the candidate’s interest and understanding of issues in palliative and end of life care (25%).


In the interview evaluation, we will ask the candidate to undertake a task relevant for the main duties and responsibilities of the post described above (25%) and subsequently interview her/him considering the skills in research, with a focus on the handling of quantitative data, ethics, language, communication and teamwork skills, and any questions raised in the evaluation of the CV (50%) as well as the interest and understanding of palliative and end of life care issues (25%).


Jury responsible for selection:

Doctor Barbara Gomes, Doctor Sílvia Lopes, Doctor Elizabeth Namukwaya. The substitute member will be Doctor Andrea Sousa.


Formalization of application: The application must include the CV of the candidate (in English), certificate of qualifications, a personal statement (in English) and two reference letters (preferably in English).


Declaration on the honor of the candidate(s) with the indication of the fellowship(s) of the typology to which the contest was held and the respective duration(s).


Applicants with academic degrees obtained abroad will be required to present a Certificate of Recognition in accordance with applicable law. This document is mandatory only in the contractualization phase.


Applications submission: Applications must be submitted in https://apply.uc.pt/IT137-22-067 .


Submission of applications: Between 02/08/2022 and 15/09/2022.


Submission deadline date: 15/09/2022.


Additional information: The evaluation results will be announced within 90 working days after the end of the applications submission deadline, by notifying the applicants via email. After the announcement of the results, candidates are considered automatically notified to, if they wish to do so, comment on the results on a preliminary hearing period within 10 days after that date. After this, the selected candidates will have to declare in writing their acceptance. Unless a justification worthy of consideration is presented, if the declaration is not submitted within the referred period, it is considered that the candidate waivers the fellowship. In case of resignation or withdrawal of the selected candidate, the next candidate with the highest evaluation score will be notified immediately.

Once the selection process is completed, the fellowship contract will be drawn up in accordance with the draft contract provided by the FCT.

After the contracted period, the fellowship holder and supervisor must prepare the final report in accordance with the respective assessment criteria that were established.


Selection reserve list: A selection reserve list will be created for a period of 6 (six) months.



More Information

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Universidade de Coimbra

EURAXESS offer ID: 820647


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