Ref: 1625384

Original Listing

Company: 1625384

Salary: Ł36,328 - Ł43,923

Closing Date: Closing date: 10 Apr 2019

Location: Dundee, Scotland : Edinburgh, Scotland, EH1 3DG : Glasgow, Scotland

Senior Research Officer (IRC68223) External

We are currently seeking applications for a number of Social Research posts within the Scottish Government (and associated organisations) based mainly in Edinburgh but with limited opportunities in Glasgow and Dundee. These are permanent and pensionable appointment and new entrants will normally start on the minimum of the pay range. Candidates with a disability who meet the essential criteria below will be invited to the assessments.

Scottish Government Social Researchers support the development, implementation and evaluation of the Scottish Government's policies to ensure they are based on the best available evidence. Our core functions include;
• providing objective, high-quality, timely evidence and research based advice to Scottish Ministers and policy makers
• ensuring policies and services meet people’s needs, deliver value for money and achieve our national outcomes
• continuously developing our professional skills to ensure SG decisions are informed by the best possible analysis.
• engaging with the academic and wider research community to bring expert knowledge into the policy making process
• Developing and delivering programmes of research including designing and carrying out in-house projects, as well as commissioning external contractors to undertake research and evaluations
• Disseminating research findings and encouraging their wider use

Qualifications Required

You must be an existing member of the Government Social Research professional body.

If you are an existing GSR member the onus is on you to provide evidence to confirm this.


You are required to have a first or upper second class Honours degree in a relevant social science with a substantial social research component* OR, a first or second class Honours degree, with a relevant postgraduate qualification in social research*.

*To be eligible the qualifying degree must contain a minimum of 30% social research methods covering at least 4 out of the 6 criteria outlined below (it is not sufficient to hold the majority in one area – coverage across all 4 areas is required)
Social Research Method Degree Content Criteria – 4 out of 6 must be demonstrated
• Qualitative methods, including research design, data collection (i.e. interviewing, focus groups, ethnographic), data analysis (e.g. thematic analysis) • Systematic reviews
• Quantitative methods, including research design, data collection (i.e. questionnaire design, sampling, weighting), data analysis (e.g. statistical analysis) • Interpretation of data (qual & quant), presentation of results, provision of recommendations/ conclusions
• Study design, hypothesis formation, testing and evaluation • Application of ethics to research

At “Step 3 Selection Criteria - Educational, Technical and Professional Qualifications” on the online application form, you will be asked to list the qualifications you hold and/or training that’s relevant to the role. In order for your degree to be considered as having a substantial social research methods component, you must ensure that you provide full details of all social research methods and analysis modules undertaken during your degree(s) (e.g. quantitative and qualitative research methods and analysis, sampling, research ethics).

PLEASE NOTE: Only information/evidence contained within “Step 3 Selection Criteria - Educational, Technical and Professional Qualifications” of the online application will be considered when assessing if you meet the qualification requirements. If you fail to demonstrate how you meet the minimum qualifications as stated above in the correct section of the application form, your application will be automatically sifted out.


Alternatively, you may be eligible to apply if you can provide evidence that you have substantial work experience in social research:

You must have at least 4 years work experience in a relevant social research job, together with (at least) a second class degree (this can be in a non-social science subject).

If you meet the qualifying criteria you will also need to pass the GSR online test before progressing to the sift.

Please note: If you fail to demonstrate how you meet the minimum qualifications as stated above in the correct section of the application form, your application will be automatically sifted out.

Essential Criteria
1. Extensive experience of applying a range of social research methods to address research questions.
2. Experience of critically evaluating data and other research evidence with high accuracy and perception to meet the needs of research users.
3. Excellent communication skills (both oral and written) when dealing with complex issues, to influence decision making and make an impact.
4. Substantial experience in planning and managing all stages of the research including research design, delivery, write up and dissemination.

For further details and to apply online, visit our website at To apply, you must fully complete and submit an online application via our website before the closing date. To learn more about this opportunity, please contact Wendy Kirk who can be reached at

If you experience any difficulties accessing our website or completing the online application form, please contact Resourcing Team on 0131 244 8217 or by email