SOAS University of London


Research Associates

The titles of ‘Research Associate’, ‘Post-Doctoral Research Associate’ or ‘Professorial Research Associate’ designate an honorary status offered by Departments, Faculty Centres or Regional Centres/Institutes to individuals known to a recommending unit wishing to work with or affiliate their work with the Department or Centre. Research Associates may or may not be physically present in the School for the duration of their appointment, but are expected to play an active part in the School’s research.

Post-Doctoral Research Associates should be recently-graduated PhD students of the School, who wish to continue their affiliation to the School in order to publish the results of their doctoral research and/or develop new projects.

Professorial Research Associates should be distinguished scholars with professorial status accorded by a reputable higher education. 

Conferral of the title of Research Associate and Professorial Research Associates will normally be for up to two years, but with provision for extension if requested and there is evidence of productive collaboration with the School.  The title of Post-Doctoral Research Associate is for two years, and is non-renewable.

This status is granted by the School on the recommendation of a Head of Department or Chair of a Regional Centre.


The privileges of a Research Associate include: 

  • Reference-only Library membership, including walk-in access to some electronic resources
  • Use of Staff Common Room and (for Post-Doctoral Research Associates) the SOAS Doctoral School
  • Attendance at lectures and seminars
  • SOAS login, email account and staff web page
  • Use of the School’s affiliation in giving public lectures or submitting material for publication

The offer does not constitute an offer of employment and individuals are not expected, or permitted, to teach whilst at SOAS, although pro-bono contributions to teaching and research are encouraged where appropriate.

Process of appointment

Requests for the title of ‘Research Associate’ should consist of:

  • Nomination should come from the Head of Department or Chair of Regional Centre/Institute
  • A brief justification of work being undertaken
  • The individual’s curriculum vitae

To apply please contact the relevant Head/Chair or team:

  • SOAS Faculty Languages and Cultures
  • SOAS Faculty Law & Social Sciences
  • SOAS Faculty Arts & Humanities
  • Centres & Programmes Office (regional centres): 


Individuals can apply for Borrowing Membership at the SOAS Library at a cost of £200 per annum or £100 for 6 months.  

If scholars subscribe to reciprocal access schemes (e.g., SCONUL or UoL) or are a retired member of SOAS staff, they can use the Library without charge on presentation of credentials from their home institution.

Office space

Unless special arrangements are made, appointees are not normally offered office space or administrative assistance.

Library Membership

During your appointment, you will have on-site access to our library collections (including our special collections and archives).  However, due to licensing restrictions, remote access to electronic resources is not included in Library membership.  Photocopying facilities are available in the Library at additional cost.  It is recommended that you bring a memory stick if you wish to save electronic information such as journal articles.

IT arrangements

Appointees will be issued a SOAS login and email account.

Individuals should be able to connect their own laptop to the School network. Please consult the IT Service Desk in the Library for assistance/ or ask for assistance during the induction. This is more practical for long-term visits to SOAS and not advised for short visits.


In the event appointees are visiting SOAS from outside the European Union, it is their responsibility to ensure that they make appropriate visa arrangements if necessary.  Refer  


Please be aware that SOAS does not have any residential accommodation of its own so we ask visitors to make their own arrangements.  You may find the University of London Accommodation Office helpful.