PhD Position in Climate Change & Institutional Innovation

Athena Institute of the VU University Amsterdam calls for applications for a PhD position in Climate Change & Institutional Innovation.

Climate change and associated contemporary societal problems call for innovative and creative solutions on a scale that may be at odds with existing administrative divisions in governmental arrangements. Likewise, such solutions may challenge standing divisions between scientific disciplines and proven methodological traditions. To develop the innovative and creative solutions required, new modes of collaborative governance and transdisciplinary, action-oriented research is needed. 

As a PhD student, the candidate will participate in research projects of the Athena Institute, especially ones developed in close cooperation with the PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency around the themes of climate policy and region-based innovative policy. They will work closely with other PhD students, as well as junior and senior researchers. During the PhD program, you will be offered opportunities for professional development.


The tasks for this position include:

  • Conducting methodologically innovative, interdisciplinary, and transdisciplinary scientific research on institutional innovation in view of complex social issues in the physical environment
  • Designing a research proposal that builds on and fits with current policy-oriented projects in collaboration with their VU supervisors and commissioning organizations
  • Designing and facilitating interactive methods, such as multistakeholder dialogue sessions aimed at problem articulation and the joint development of solutions, followed by concrete actions and their management
  • Writing Englishlanguage research articles that will be submitted to international scientific journals for peer-review and will culminate in a scientific dissertation
  • Writing the Dutch language, and informative articles for policymakers on the results of the research;
  • Teaching (up to 40% of the appointment) in the courses provided by the Athena Institute.
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  • The salary during the first year is €2.443 rising to €3.122 gross per month.
  • a maximum of 41 days of annual leave based on full-time employment,
  • 8% holiday allowance and 8.3% end-of-year bonus,
  • solid pension scheme (ABP),
  • possibility to save holiday hours, for sabbatical leave,
  • child daycare facilities are available on campus

Job Requirements

They seek candidates with

  • a graduate in, for example, Science, Technology and Society, Innovation Studies, Public Administration, Sociology, Political Science, Organizational Science, or one of the Life Sciences
  • experience in related fields integrating social sciences and natural sciences may also apply
  • an affinity with action research and with the dynamics between civil society organizations, knowledge institutions, and policy practice
  • knowledge of qualitative research methods and is open to (or has experience with) transdisciplinary research
  • a proven ability to work well in interdisciplinary teams (listening, flexible, adaptive, proactive)
  • good organizational and communicative skills
  • excellent verbal and writing skills in English and an excellent command of the Dutch language

Application Process

Interested applicants can apply and ensure that they attach the following:

  • curriculum vitae and
  • cover letter

To apply, click here

Application Deadline: June 20, 2022.

For more informatio on the PhD Position in Climate Change & Institutional Innovationn, visit the official site.

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