PhD Stress-in-Action: Stress and Cardiometabolic Health

The Faculty of Behavioural and Social Sciences, University of Groningen, offers a position on PhD Stress-in-Action: Stress and Cardiometabolic Health.

The new PhD student will focus on the association between daily stressors and physical health, in particular cardiometabolic health. Numerous recent systematic reviews are focusing on the question of whether stress leads to cardiometabolic diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. These studies generally find evidence for an association between stressors and physical disease. However, there are remaining questions on the strength of the association, mediating and moderating factors, and causality, e.g., residual confounding by disease severity. Therefore, we plan to not just merely review the current literature but move the research further by focusing on various innovative aspects using different methods and data (systematic review, time series analyses, and cohort and registry data), focusing on research questions and topics such as:

  • How much of the disability (e.g., DALYs) that is currently attributed to cardiometabolic diseases is actually accounted for by preceding stress or mental disorders?
  • Conduct an integrative review on (bi)directional associations between stress and cardiometabolic diseases, its underlying physiological and behavioral mechanisms, and issues of (residual) confounding disease severity.
  • How do different stressors in daily life affect physical symptoms, e.g., glycemic control, in people with diabetes?
  • systematic review/meta-analysis of time series analyses on the topic of stressors and physical symptoms
  • using a data-driven approach to identify groups of individuals who follow specific trajectories indicative of disease development patterns, leading to somatic conditions associated with preceding psychopathology.


The tasks of the PhD candidate are:

  • conduct research that results in a dissertation and is in line with the objectives and requirements of the project
  • organize and execute the data collection for the different studies
  • publish the results of the research in international scientific journals
  • present the research findings to fellow scientists and developers in the larger project and collaborate with them
  • provide a limited number of educational activities at the psychology department, such as small-scale tutorials and guest lectures, in collaboration with the supervisors.
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  • a salary of € 2,770 gross per month in the first year of the appointment, rising to € 3,539 gross per month in the fourth year for a full-time position;
  • a holiday allowance of 8% of gross annual income and an 8.3% end-of-year allowance;
  • attractive secondary terms of employment;

Job Requirements

For this position on stress and cardiometabolic health, applicants are expected to:

  • have a (research) master’s degree in clinical or health psychology (or a related discipline)
  • expertise with reviews and/or time series analysis
  • have a good academic track record
  • be enthusiastic about writing international publications and a dissertation
  • have good academic English writing skills;
  • have good social and communication skills and are willing to work with other team members
  • be enthusiastic about translating scientific insights into practical guidelines and advice
  • have good organizational skills and the motivation to organize and realize data collection
  • have demonstrable competences in conceptual capacity, presenting, planning, organizing, and monitoring.

Application Process

Applications should include:

  • a letter of motivation
  • a curriculum vitae.

To apply for the PhD Stress-in-Action: Stress and Cardiometabolic Healthclick here.

Deadline: November 16, 2023.

For more information on the PhD Stress-in-Action: Stress and Cardiometabolic Health, visit the official site.

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