Role requirements in academic recruitment for construction and engineering

Pilcher, Nick and Galbrun, Laurent and Craig, Nigel and Murray, Mike and Forster, Alan M. and Tennant, Stuart (2021) Role requirements in academic recruitment for construction and engineering. European Journal of Engineering Education, 46 (2). pp. 247-265. ISSN 0304-3797 (

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Two ongoing and recurrent debates in the employment of academic staff are (1) how much industry experience should faculty staff have? and (2) what priority is given to research, teaching or both? Such debates take place worldwide and are particularly relevant to vocational subject areas. Through a statistical analysis of circa 200 job adverts for lecturer / assistant professor, senior lecturer / associate professor, and professor / full professor positions in Construction and Engineering posts in the UK, this paper investigates the essential and desirable attributes required for ‘research’, ‘teaching’ and ‘overall requirements’. The analysis shows institutions unmistakably focus on, and coherently recruit for research, but demonstrate very little reasoned approach to recruiting for teaching. Indeed, findings identify ‘administration’ as the key teaching priority. Further empirical analysis demonstrates no significant difference in recruitment strategy before and after the introduction of the Teaching Excellence Framework, despite its aim to put teaching excellence to the fore.