Take This is announcing an opening for a full-time, two-year, contracted post-doctoral position with a focus on qualitative research in digital game studies and extremism and radicalization. This position is part of the “Disrupting Video Games-Based Radilcaization through Collaborative Cross-Sector Networks” project conducted in collaboration with Middlebury Institute for International Studies, Center on Terrorism, Extremism, and Counterterrorism and Logically AI, and funded by the Department of Homeland Security.
The official project description is as follows: Over the past decade, video games have increasingly become focal points of social activity and identity creation for adolescents and young adults. Relationships made and fostered within game ecosystems routinely cross over into the real world and are impactful parts of local communities. Correspondingly, extremists have used video games and targeted video game communities for activities ranging from propaganda creation to terrorist mobilization and training. Game developers in general–from small, independent studios to billion-dollar multinational corporations–have lagged in awareness of how extremists may attempt to exploit their games, and how their communities can be targeted for radicalization. This joint project from the Center on Terrorism, Extremism, and Counterterrorism, Take This, and Logically seeks to develop a shared framework for understanding extremism in games. This includes the development of a set of best practices and centralized resources for monitoring and evaluation of extremist activities as well as a series of training workshops for the monitoring, detection, and prevention of extremist exploitation in gaming spaces for community managers, multiplayer designers, lore developers, mechanics designers, and trust and safety professionals.
- Collaborate to develop and implement qualitative research approach to assessing the needs and requirements of members of the games industry when it comes to extremism within games, across sectors (e.g., narrative design, trust and safety, executive leadership)
- Administer interviews to members of the gaming industry, across sectors (e.g., narrative design, trust and safety, executive leadership), relating to extremism within games
- Analyze and present findings of the interviews, including the drafting of research reports.
- This position will require some travel within the United States in 2023 and 2024 calendar years.
- A PhD in psychology, sociology, political science, communication, or a related field (ABD will be considered)
- Extensive experience with qualitative research methods, including the creation and administration of semi-structured interviews, qualitative coding, interpretation, and analysis.
- A foundational understanding of the games industry
- A foundational understanding of dark participation and/or extremism in online spaces, and within gaming cultures specifically
Salary will be between $60,000 and $62,000 annually. This is a full time, two-year contracted position. Posting will begin January 2023.
The candidate will work closely with Take This and its research partners on this project.
A successful applicant will demonstrate excellent communication skills, collaboration skills, and a passion for games.
Take This is an equal opportunity employer. Our team and our services are made stronger with the inclusion of people with diverse backgrounds, experiences, abilities, and perspectives, so we especially encourage folks from marginalized backgrounds to apply. We maintain an open and welcoming work environment designed with flexibility, mutual respect, and shared humanity as its principles.
Application must include a single page cover letter which describes research fit on this project, a resume/CV, and contact information for two references who may be contacted to submit reference letters on your behalf. Review of applications will begin November 1, 2022 and will continue until the position is filled. Please direct any questions to Rachel Kowert, chair of the search committee, at firstname.lastname@example.org