Postdoctoral Fellow, Medical Humanities Research Institute at Rice University

The Medical Humanities Research Institute at Rice University seeks to appoint one postdoctoral fellow with a PhD in the humanities, interpretive social sciences, or the arts for AY 2024-25, to participate in our Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Sawyer Seminar, “Reimagining Technologies of Care: Racial Health Equity and Data Justice.”  The Medical Humanities Research Institute includes faculty from diverse fields in the humanities, social sciences, engineering, and the arts, and collaborates with numerous institutions in the Texas Medical Center and the broader Houston community. 

The “Reimagining Technologies of Care” Sawyer seminar aims to intervene in the perpetuation of inequitable healthcare by bringing key insights and methodologies of the humanities into the analysis, creation and use of healthcare technologies and the collection and use of health data from these technologies. Building on the strength of Rice University’s faculty working in Medical Humanities, Science and Technology Studies, and the Creative Arts, this Seminar will expand upon our existing connections with clinicians, biomedical researchers, engineers, and data scientists to imagine new approaches to healthcare that place anti-racism, ethics, patient experiences, artistic expression, and historical and narrative analysis at the center of medical innovation.

During the Sawyer Seminar year (2024-25), the postdoctoral fellow will attend reading group meetings, meet with virtual and keynote speakers, present their research at public events, develop collaborative and single-author publications, and teach one course each semester on a topic related to the Sawyer Seminar. The Seminar organizers will provide multidisciplinary mentoring opportunities to the fellow, and fellows will be invited to lead some of the monthly discussions and to introduce and moderate discussions with some of the lecturers. The postdoctoral fellow will be selected based on the relevance of their work to the seminar’s theme, potential for outreach with local health and community-based organizations, scholarly record of publications and presentations, and history of or interest in collaborative research.

This position is in the Rice University Medical Humanities Research Institute for the period from July 1, 2024-June 30, 2025. This is a full-time, residential fellowship with a 1/1 teaching load and is benefits eligible. The fellow will receive an annual salary of $70,000 and a $3,000 one-time stipend for research and/or relocation to Houston. Pending funding, a second year may become available.


  • PhD (completed by June 30, 2024) or other doctoral degree in Humanities, interpretive Social Sciences, or the Arts
  • Skills Required
    • Strong verbal and written communication skills, as well as oral presentation skills
    • Ability to work in a team environment, to participate actively, to collaborate and to motivate others 
    • Ability to work independently and professionally with minimal supervision and direction
    • Excellent time management skills

Essential Functions:

  • Participates in weekly meetings and activities related to the Sawyer seminar, including reading group, planning meetings, lectures and other events
  • Performs independent or collaborative specialized research
  • Mentors, oversees, and/or trains junior research team members (such as predoctoral Sawyer seminar fellows or participating undergraduate students)
  • Communicates the research findings through verbal presentations and publications/reports
  • Supports project management
  • Some research-related travel, as well as event attendance and engagement with the Institute and Medical Humanities Program
  • Performs all other duties as assigned 

Required Application Materials:

  • Cover letter connecting your work with the seminar’s objective 
  • Curriculum Vitae 
  • Writing sample (approximately 25 pages) 
  • 1,000-word research project proposal for work to be completed during the postdoctoral fellowship, including discussion of the collaborative and outreach potential of the project
  • Evidence of teaching effectiveness 
  • Two-page course proposal for a 14-week undergraduate course on a topic related to the seminar 

Please combine all materials into one PDF. If all the materials cannot be combined into a single file, additional files may be sent to (please reference the Postdoctoral Associate – Medical Humanities Research Institute – 3140 job requisition).

Three letters of recommendation are also required for the application. Please ask your recommenders to email letters by the deadline to

Apply now:

Finalists will participate in Zoom interviews in February 2024 with the Seminar leaders.

For questions about the position, please contact Tiffany Morgan (

Deadline: February 1, 2024