The Society of Architectural Historians (SAH), with support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, is launching a 21-month study of the state of the field of architectural history. Anecdotal evidence of recent years suggests diminished ranks of tenure-track teachers coupled with rising numbers of part-time and adjunct positions, and greater emphasis on applied research at the doctoral level at the expense of a humanities orientation.
SAH seeks to hire a Senior Researcher/Research Analyst to collect concrete data to help SAH and the Mellon Foundation understand in the broadest terms the current status of architectural history education in the United States. The work will include gauging shifts in higher education as well as surveying a range of organizations that educate the public about the built environment, by consulting various resources, including university websites, US Dept. of Education publications, data collecting bodies, and contacting key stakeholders by mail and by phone for further detail or to resolve ambiguous information. The Researcher/Analyst will be responsible at the start for developing a transparent and efficient methodology for the data collecting project, writing interim reports and, at the conclusion, will write a final report which will assist in generating initiatives that SAH and the Mellon Foundation can execute to respond appropriately to the trends that have been detected. The Research Analyst will report to SAH’s Executive Director and will work closely with the SAH President and an Advisory Committee established for this project.
As a result of this work, the Research Analyst will have gained professional experience in research, data collection, communications and analysis and will also have developed expertise that can be applied to addressing trends in higher education, consulting or government. The researcher also will have gained personal contact with numerous leaders in the field of architectural history education.This position is only available through the Society of Architectural Historians.
KEY DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
Collect data on the current and historic (past 5 years) number of architectural history programs, course offerings, faculty and faculty credentials at a wide variety of public and private institutions (community college through PhD programs) in the US;
Discuss research project and collect data at professional conferences including SAH, NHA, ACSA, and CAA. The researcher also will seek out alternative venues for architectural history education, including blogs, podcasts, city tours, etc. and, where appropriate, collect data from such sources.
Forge and manage relationships with key international, national, state, and local stakeholders;
Possibly devise an online survey to collect data broadly; compile data in database, spreadsheets or other means for ongoing discussion and analysis;
Share research findings in conference talks, summaries, fact sheets, web content, reports, infographics and a final report and distribute to SAH, the Mellon Foundation, stakeholders, colleagues, universities and thought leaders.
Recommend executable strategies for strengthening the field of architectural history through coalition-building, curriculum changes, and communications to promote cultivation of architectural history in higher education.
PhD in the humanities or humanistic social sciences. Preference will be given to candidates who are recent PhDs in the history of architecture, landscapes, planning or related fields.
Experience with collecting datasets and organizing the content in databases, spreadsheets and data visualizations for analysis
Excellent research, critical analysis and problem-solving skills; Strong written and oral communication skills;
The ability to work both independently and collaboratively with SAH staff, leadership and the Advisory Committee for this project.
Internal Number: 2019-01
About Society of Architectural Historians
The Society of Architectural Historians is a Chicago-based, international learned society that promotes the study, interpretation and conservation of architecture, design, landscapes and urbanism worldwide. Founded at Harvard University in 1940, SAH serves a network of local, national and international institutions and individuals who, by profession or interest, focus on the history of the built environment and its role in shaping contemporary life. SAH promotes meaningful public engagement with the history of the built environment through advocacy efforts, print and online publications, and local, national and international programs. Learn more at www.sah.org