Research Fellow in Multi-functional Finishes

Expiring today

Leeds, West Yorkshire
Salary: Grade 7 (£33,797 – £40,322 p.a.)
26 Apr 2021
18 May 2021
Full Time

Salary: Grade 7 (£33,797 – £40,322 p.a.) It is likely that an appointment will be made no higher than £35,845 p.a., due to funding

Reference: AHCDE1096

Closing Date: 18 May 2021

Full time, fixed-term for 2 years subject to funding, (available from 1st April 2021 subject to laboratory access)

We will consider flexible working and job share applications



Research Fellow in Multi-functional Finishes,

School of Design, Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Cultures

Research Fellow in Multi-functional Finishes,

School of Design, Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Cultures

Do you have a strong technical background in textile dyeing and finishing? Would you like to further your career by working in one of the UK’s leading research intensive Universities in collaboration with a world-leading industrial partner?

You will be part of a multi-disciplinary team working across the University and our commercial partner to develop novel, commercially viable finishes that will enhance the sustainability of textile and textile related materials. These finshes will need to be capable of being applied during production and/or laundering of items (e.g. garments), so as to improve the aesthetics, durability, performance and longevity of the material, thereby enhancing the value of the textile/textile-related material to retailers, resellers and users.

This post will be based in the School of Design on the main University Campus but you will be required to develop your research ideas and findings with our commercial partner who are based in mainland Europe.

As the finish will be multi-functional in terms of the promotional attributes that it imparts to the textile/textile-related material, a thorough understanding of the chemistry of both textile fibres and dyes is required, as well as detailed knowledge of the theoretical and practical aspects of textile finishing. As you will work closely with a collaborating, world-renowned company, excellent interpersonal skills are essential.

With excellent English language skills, you will be able to communicate well, both verbally and in writing; the ability to convey your research ideas and findings to our commercial partner is essential. You must be self-motivated and able to work without the need for close supervision. You must be able to plan and carry out experimental work efficiently, keeping detailed logs of your day-to-day activities, and be able to interpret practical and theoretical results. You will have a flexible approach to work and be able to perform well, while meeting deadlines.


What does the role entail?

As a Research Fellow, your main duties will include:

  • Developing novel multi-functional finishes that can be utilised for a variety of textile and non-textile materials;
  • Developing novel application methods that are suitable for a wide range of different types of material;
  • Devising unique, non-mainstream research approaches that result in commercially-viable finishing processes;
  • Working very closely with our collaborating industrial partner;
  • Providing detailed updates to our industrial partner;
  • Providing weekly written and verbal reports describing progress and intended plans for the following week, attend meetings as required to discuss the project and maintaining a detailed scientific log;
  • Helping maintain the efficient and safe running of the laboratory;
  • Continually updating your understanding of the field, applying this knowledge to your research;
  • Working independently;
  • Ensuring good day-to-day progress of work and that project objectives are met, maintaining good records and laboratory notebooks;
  • Working within and applying the standard operating procedures, health and safety regulations and quality assurance procedures of the School, Faculty and University.


These duties provide a framework for the role and should not be regarded as a definitive list. Other reasonable duties may be required consistent with the grade of the post.

You will report to Professor Stephen Burkinshaw, line manager for this particular post


What will you bring to the role?

As a Research Fellow, you will have:

  • A  PhD  in  a  relevant  discipline (or  be  close  to  completion  and  have submitted your thesis before starting the role);
  • A thorough understanding of the chemistry of textile fibres and dyes, as well as finishes;
  • A detailed knowledge of theoretical aspects related to textile coloration and finishes;
  • A comprehensive understanding of practical textile coloration;
  • Knowledge of polymeric materials and their processing from the viewpoints of the textile and clothing manufacturing sectors;
  • A proven record of relevant, high quality, contemporary research output;
  • The ability to adopt novel, non-mainstream research approaches that result in commercially-viable processes/solutions;
  • The ability to design, execute and write-up research independently;
  • Excellent time-management and planning skills, with the ability to meet tight deadlines;
  • The ability to manage commercially sensitive information and maintain confidentiality;
  • The ability to work with precision and care;
  • A proven ability to work well independently.
  • Excellent writing skills and the ability to prepare documents that describe highly technical issues in a concise and readable form and, in a timely manner;
  • Excellent verbal communication skills and the ability to regularly communicate material of a specialist/highly technical nature with the industrial partner;
  • A commitment to continually updating your knowledge and understanding within the field, transforming and applying knowledge acquired from scholarship to relevant research;

You may also have:

  • Knowledge of existing commercial coloration machinery;
  • Knowledge of the textile and clothing manufacturing sectors;
  • Evidence of successful cross-disciplinary working with industrial organisations;
  • A proven ability to work well as part of a multidisciplinary team.


How to apply

You can apply for this role online; more guidance can be found on our How to Apply information page. Applications should be submitted by 23.59 (UK time) on the advertised closing date.


Contact information

To explore the post further or for any queries you may have, please contact:

Professor Stephen Burkinshaw

Tel: +44 (0)113 343 3698



Additional information

Find out more about the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Cultures

Find out more about the School of Design

As an international research-intensive university with a strong commitment to student education, we aim to create an inclusive environment that attracts, supports and retains the best students and staff from all backgrounds and from across the world.

In line with this vision, the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Cultures is committed to fostering a culture of inclusion, respect and equality of opportunity. We select candidates on the basis of merit and ability, and aspire to further diversify our Faculty community. We particularly welcome and encourage applications from candidates belonging to groups that have been under-represented in the University including, but not limited to: Black, Asian and ethnically diverse people; people who identify as LGBT+; and people with disabilities.


Working at Leeds

Find out more about the benefits of working at the University and what it is like to live and work in the Leeds area on our Working at Leeds information page.


Candidates with disabilities

Information for candidates with disabilities, impairments or health conditions, including requesting alternative formats, can be found on our Accessibility information page or by getting in touch with us at

Criminal record information

Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974

A criminal record check is not required for this position. However, all applicants will be required to declare if they have any ‘unspent’ criminal offences, including those pending.

Any offer of appointment will be in accordance with our Criminal Records policy. You can find out more about required checks and declarations in our Criminal Records information page.