Research assistant job listings

A list of Research Assistant job openings for current University of Auckland Business School Honours, Masters and PhD students.

Content moderation and sentiment analysis platform

Commences/Duration: 1 November - 31 December 2023
Estimated hours: 120
Location: Flexible (on campus or remote)
Closing date: 31 December 2023

The project: Content moderation and sentiment analysis platform

The role: Research assistant

Core responsibilities: 

  • Develop and enhance a user-centric web platform, ensuring an intuitive, engaging, and seamless user experience.
  • Implement robust cybersecurity protocols to guarantee data integrity and user privacy.
  • Utilize AWS/Google Cloud for optimal, scalable, and secure storage solutions.
  • Continually optimize the platform, ensuring alignment with the latest tech trends and user expectations.

Key Requirements:

  • Proficiency in UI/UX design tools and principles.
  • Experience with AWS or Google Cloud platforms.
  • Strong understanding of cybersecurity frameworks. 
  • Knowledge in web development languages (e.g., HTML, CSS, JavaScript).
  • A creative, innovative mindset, and problem-solving aptitude.

Contact details and application process:
Dr Dulani Jayasuriya

Additional requirements:
Prior examples of projects completed by student.

Digital readiness and wellbeing

Commences/Duration: asap until 30 November 2023
Estimated hours: 30
Location: This work can be done anywhere if the research assistant is able to access the university library databases and the wider internet.
Closing date: 26 October 2023

The project:
I am the primary investigator on an ongoing project which builds on my completed project looking into digital training and looks forward to how we can measure digitally readiness in both individuals and families as they interact with the digital world. In our project we propose to develop a framework and index to measure digital competency and score digital readiness within family groups.

The role:

The Research assistant will be required to assist the following:

  • To review the literature on the digital divide within families (diverse demographic groups) and required digital competencies in the digital age.

Key skills/attributes:

The research assistant will need skills in the following two areas:

  • Literature searching
  • Literature review

Contact details and application process:
Associate Professor Lesley Gardner,
Please contact Dr Gardner with a short email introducing yourself and a copy of your CV.

Additional requirements:

Previous literature review experience would be a bonus.

Artificial intelligence and the danger of human datafication

Commences/Duration: October 2023 – June 2024 (negotiable)
Estimated hours: 12 per week (Total 384)
Location: Auckland
Closing date: 23 October 2023

The project:
This is a transdisciplinary project funded by the University’s Transdisciplinary Ideation Fund. The team includes computer scientists, economists, and critical business theorists. It seeks to identify the risks inherent in personal datafication, the abstraction and reduction of the person to a matrix of interacting variables, both as input to and output of AI analysis. Our particular concern lies with individuals and communities that do not regard datafication as normal and inevitable consequences of contemporary life.

A targeted output of the project is an application to the Marsden Fund to engage in a larger scale empirical project at the national level. The Marsden Fund is a scientific research grant body administered by the Royal Society to enhance knowledge in New Zealand.

As a preliminary to the Marsden Fund application the Project Team will also develop theoretical foundations in the form of one or more academic articles pertaining to datafication, AI, and under-protected communities.

The RA will be responsible for assisting project members with general research assistance, including literature reviews, data gathering, and proof-reading.

Specific requirements include developing a database of research on AI application in the New Zealand context, considering data sovereignty, issues relating to privacy, and AI ethics more generally. This to include unpublished sources where possible.

Similarly, to map the community of practice in the space of AI policy research in NZ. Identify individuals and institutions engaged in seeking to add to the discourse on the subject of responsible AI implementation.

Collect and review prior applications to the Marsden Fund concerning aspects of AI implementation.

Assist project members in the development of a Marsden Fund application for submission in 2024.

Search for AI and society project funding opportunities in New Zealand and overseas.

Key skills/attributes: 
Applicants should possess familiarity with social scientific research practice developed in post-graduate study at masters or doctoral levels.

Interest in the impact of technological innovation on society is preferred, especially in terms of potential infringement of human rights, including cultural rights.

The applicant ideally will be interested in research in the impact of technology on society, especially in context of indigenous and minority communities in Aotearoa New Zealand. They should be an able communicator able with multicultural dexterity.

Contact details and application process:
Dr Brent Burmester
Department of Management and International Business
University of Auckland Business School
Applications will be assessed by the project team upon receipt.

Factors impacting student engagement in hybrid postgraduate classrooms: A mixed methods approach

Commences/Duration: 1 October 2023
Estimated hours: 33
Location: University of Auckland Business School
Closing date: 6 December 2023

The project:
This proposed mixed methods research study delves into the multifaceted factors influencing student engagement in hybrid postgraduate classrooms, with a particular emphasis on enhancing attendance and engagement. The importance of this research lies in addressing the evolving landscape of education, characterized by the integration of online and in-person learning modalities, which presents unique challenges and opportunities for both educators and learners.

We hope to investigate engagement issues in several postgraduate classrooms at UoA. By employing a mixed methods approach, this study will combine quantitative analysis of attendance data and surveys with qualitative insights from interviews and focus groups. The findings of this research will aim to not only illuminate the key drivers of student engagement but also uncover nuanced perspectives, shedding light on the motivations, barriers, and experiences of postgraduate students in hybrid learning environments.

Practical implications of this research include the development of evidence-based strategies for educators to enhance student attendance and engagement. Moreover, it hopes to inform the design of more effective hybrid curricula and instructional methods. Theoretical implications extend to enriching our understanding of contemporary pedagogical paradigms, fostering adaptability in education, and contributing to the ongoing discourse on the future of learning. Ultimately, this research aims to advance our collective pursuit of improved educational outcomes in the hybrid postgraduate classroom setting.

A comprehensive literature review on this topic is highly relevant as it provides a foundation for understanding the existing body of knowledge and research gaps regarding factors influencing student engagement in hybrid postgraduate classrooms. By synthesizing previous studies, it offers insights into the evolving nature of education and informs the current research, ensuring that it builds upon existing scholarship and contributes meaningfully to the field. Moreover, a literature review helps identify potential theoretical frameworks and methodologies, guiding us towards more informed and effective study designs. Hence, our need for an RA to enable the literature review is conducted.

Conduct a literature review on the below.

  • Factors contributing to classroom engagement among postgraduate students in hybrid higher education classrooms.

Document a literature summary.

This literature review will enable the researcher to understand the current outlook in the research space for classroom engagement and enable identification of gaps requiring further research.

Key skills/attributes: 

  • Knowledge of how to use library databases and referencing software (Mendeley).
  • Construct an appropriate literature review query and edit query as required.
  • Include papers based on agreed upon inclusion and exclusion criteria.
  • Summarize the literature and document it.

Contact details and application process: Please email Udayangi at