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Post-doctoral Research Associate (NOVMAT)

Unit :  Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM)
Salary :  £33,797 to £40,322
Location :  Milton Keynes
Please quote reference :  18087
Fixed Term Contract for 18 months, Full Time
Closing Date :  22 March, 2021 - 12:00

Change your career, change lives

The Open University is the UK’s largest university, a world leader in flexible part-time education combining a mission to widen access to higher education with research excellence, transforming lives through education.

The role

Applications are invited for a Research Associate position in the School of Mathematics and Statistics at the Open University to work with Professor Uwe Grimm (School of Mathematics and Statistics) and with Dr Iestyn Jowers and Dr Richard Moat (School of Engineering and Innovation) on the EPSRC-funded New Horizons project Novel Superior Materials Based On Aperiodic Tilings (NOVMAT), 

This exciting interdisciplinary project aims to investigate the properties of novel structures which are inspired by mathematics (aperiodic tilings) and by nature (quasicrystals) to applications in cellular materials through additive manufacturing (3D printing).

The successful applicant will work in an interdisciplinary environment on the computer-based design and on the modelling of mechanical properties of these novel structures.

Candidates will have completed, or be close to completing, a PhD in a relevant area, which includes applied mathematics, physics, engineering, materials science, design or closely related fields, and will have experience of undertaking computational research.

The post is initially funded for 18 months and is available from 1 May 2021; follow-up funding will be sought. The successful candidate will be based in the School of Mathematics and Statistics at the Open University campus in Milton Keynes (possibly following an initial period of working from home).

The School provides a friendly and flexible working environment, where diversity is celebrated and welcomed. The School is active in challenging injustice and promoting equitable treatment for those from marginalised or under-represented groups, and holds an Athena Swan Bronze award for its work in promoting gender equality.

If you have any questions regarding the research group or the role please contact Uwe Grimm (

What you get in return

Benefits include a supportive and friendly working environment, 33 days holiday per annum pro rata plus Bank Holidays and Christmas closure days, and an attractive pension proposition.

How to apply

Unless otherwise stated in the advert, all applications are completed online via the OU Job’s page and following the instructions below and clicking the “APPLY NOW” link below. Applications submitted via 3rd party websites will not be considered. 

To apply for this role please submit the following;

  • CV
  • Personal statement, up to 1,000 words, you should set out in your statement why you’re interested in this role and provide examples of where your skills and experience meet the required competencies for this role as detailed in the job and person specification.

The above documents will need to be submitted as one attachment during the application process, please include the personal statement followed by the CV in this document.

To ensure your file is uploaded to our system correctly, please make sure your document is saved with the following file name as appropriate to the vacancy you are applying for: 18087, surname, first initial.

You will need to have your documents ready ahead of submitting the electronic application.


Remember to attach your CV and Cover Letter as ONE DOCUMENT.  

Closing date:  noon 22 March 2021.
Interview date:  to be confirmed but expected to take place during week commencing 12 April 2021.

You will receive updates regarding your application from Please ensure this email address is added to your list of trusted senders. Please also keep an eye on your junk folder to ensure you do not miss any important updates regarding this role. 

You can view your application communications on the Candidate portal. 

Please note: If you have not heard from us within 2 weeks of the application closing date, please assume that on this occasion you have not been selected for interview, however we thank you for your interest in The Open University and encourage you to apply for future positions.  

Find out more about us and our mission by watching this short video (you will be taken to YouTube by clicking this link). 

Hard copies and access details for disabled applicants are available from the Resourcing Hub by email (on the link above), quoting the reference number 18087.

We value diversity and we recognise that different people bring different perspectives, ideas, knowledge and culture, and that this difference brings great strength. Applications from candidates with protected characteristics are welcomed.

Job related information : 

PDF icon PDRA NOVMAT Job Description.pdf236.52 KB

Posting Date :  19 February, 2021 - 09:00

Contact us

If you have any queries or questions about the recruitment process, or regarding your application, please contact:

If you have any feedback regarding the recruitment process, please contact the Senior Resourcing Account Manager who will look into the matter.

Senior Resourcing Account Manager,
Resourcing Hub,
The Open University,
Walton Hall,
Milton Keynes,