Signup date: 11 Jul 2022 at 1:53pm
Last login: 06 Jan 2023 at 2:00pm
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Not a mistake! While it is terrifying now, it is what a PhD is - effectively an apprenticeship to learn and put into practice research. There is always a lot of learning to do along the way, even if you stay within your subject area. The principles of doing research well apply to both qualitative and quantitative studies, you may just need to embrace a different perspective or approach. While it may not feel helpful now, having experience in more quantitative research will help you be critical in doing so, and you will be better rounded for seeing both sides. To start, don't try to understand everything, focus on scoping what you need to understand for your project and building on that.
Don't let your research being different limit your interaction with your cohort. I found myself in a similar situation, thinking my cohort would judge my work as less good in some way, but when I tried to integrate I found the opposite. They were excited to talk about how research with methods that I was using could be used to support or test their own theories. When talking to them (attend seminars, gatherings, etc), focus on the subject that unifies you (understanding human behaviour) and draw links to show how you are working on two sides of the same coin.
I am in a similar situation (not for the same reasons, but I am limited in location) and it comes down to assessing your boundaries and priorities.
Looking for a remote job in a different country may be difficult as it may come with tax implications for the host institution and yourself, so they are more likely to want someone with at least a right to work in that country whether remote or not. Of course, that doesn't mean these jobs don't exist, but you may have better luck finding one in your own country.
Remote work is more common than it used to be and, providing that your field is suited to remote work, you may be able to find something. From my experience they don't always advertise whether remote work is possible, so you can send a polite informal e-mail to the contact in the advert in advance, check the institution's guidelines on remote work, or apply and request it at a later stage. There are also tell-tale signs of positions that are unlikely to be allowed remotely e.g. requiring teaching or being heavily involved in faculty activities. Many institutions also off hybrid work where you are only required into the office on so many days a week/month/year (as someone above described). Given your situation, a few hours or so commute once or twice a week may be worth being able to stay in your desired area.
If you are unable to find anything that allows you to work remotely, or there is nothing in a commutable vicinity, then assess your priorities and perhaps consider moving into research outside of academia (or away from research altogether) - it is a difficult choice, but I know many people for whom it was the right one for them to be happy or to meet their commitments. This move may only need to be temporary, as positions that do fit your criteria might turn up in the next year or so, so make sure you keep your skills and CV up to date.
I think that the others are probably right that you have missed the boat for a post-doc, but that doesn't necessarily mean there is no hope. Post-docs are specifically looking for people who are fresh out of their PhD (or another post-doc), and both post-docs and academic positions are competitive, so you need to be already running to be attractive to them e.g. recent experience, strong references, recent publications and/or ongoing research, etc.
I can't speak for biology, but at least in my field, there are always other research positions (government, independent research groups, private companies, etc.) that are not as specific about having someone immediately from their studies with publications - indeed, sometimes being outside of academia can be a benefit if you can sell the other skills you have obtained in that time well. If you find one of these jobs, you can at least break back into your area of study and start re-developing those contacts and skills which you can use to build on it. It is not a quick fix, but sometimes the slow road is the better one in the long term.
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