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A PhD Candidate in the field of the anthropology of climate change and environmental justice

22-482 12342
Omvang (fte)
Geplaatst op
26 juli 2022
23 augustus 2022 Vacature gesloten

The University of Leiden and the Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies (KITLV-KNAW) are looking for:

A PhD Candidate in the field of the anthropology of climate change and environmental justice
 (1,00 FTE)  
Vacancy number 22-482  12342

Leiden University and the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) offer a four-year PhD position at the KITLV/Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies. The PhD candidate will be working at the Leiden-based KITLV, an institute of the KNAW, and will defend the PhD thesis at Leiden University. This position is shared with the Faculty of Social Sciences. The PhD candidate will be jointly supervised by senior researchers at KITLV and Leiden University, particularly those at the Institute of Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology.

 Project description
The PhD candidate will work in the field of the anthropology of climate change and environmental justice in Southeast Asia. The project will engage with the recent call for decolonizing the climate change debate, studying both differential impacts of climate change, as well as diverse perspectives, interpretations, and ways of responding to climate change in an unevenly shared and increasingly vulnerable world. The candidate will explore ontological, epistemological and methodological openings for (re)imagining and (re)connecting with vulnerable places, species and relations between humans and non-humans. Ideally, the candidate has some experience with transdisciplinarity, and the weaving of different forms of climate knowledge – such as local and indigenous knowledge, earth literacy, practitioners’ knowledge, experiential knowledge, and/or scientific knowledge.

Based on the applicant's own research idea, and based on ethnographic fieldwork in any Southeast Asia location(s), the project will focus on a topic relevant to the anthropology of climate change. The aim is to understand the heterogeneity of local ways of being and co-existing, and the creativity and resilience in response to climate change, and relate this to the socio-political and historical context.

One may think of questions such as how climate change is affecting local access to natural resources, what the impacts of climate change are on the way local livelihood strategies are organized, or what the impacts of climate change are on different groups of city dwellers, small island populations or upland/forest ecosystems.

 There is no stringent disciplinary limitation except that applicants must be trained in the humanities and/or social sciences, that the project has a ethnographic focus, and that the research should be centred in the Southeast Asian region. Applicants with an MA/MSc or Mphil in anthropology, sociology, cultural studies, religious studies, or a combination of these disciplines may apply. An interest and ability to work across disciplinary boundaries will be considered an advantage. 

Candidates should conduct their projects in alignment with the research profiles of these partners, see:
 Research - Leiden University (universiteitleiden.nl)
* Our Mission - KITLV 

Key responsibilities

* Conducting ethnographic research, including field research in Southeast Asia;

* Publish on the basis of this research, culminating in international peer-reviewed journal articles or a PhD dissertation completed in the allotted time (four years at 1.0 fte);

* You are invited to participate in institute meetings both at KITLV and the Institute of Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology, as well as the Netherlands School of Anthropology (NESA);

*Take part in the PhD program of the affiliated institutes;

*Participate in academic conferences, workshops, and other scholarly and outreach activities.

Selection criteria
The candidate should:

* Hold a recent MA, MSc or Mphil in the social sciences or humanities from an internationally recognized university;

* Excel academically, as shown in the transcripts and CV, and show a strong interest in fundamental research;

* Have an excellent written and spoken command of English;

* Have an advanced level in one of the local languages of Southeast Asia that is needed for the ethnographic research;

* Be highly motivated and able to work independently;

* Have excellent social and organizational skills.

Our organisation
The Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences consists of five institutes: Education and Child Studies, Political Science, Psychology, Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology and the Center for Science and Technology Studies. The faculty has approximately 7,000 students and 1,025 employees. The Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences brings together high-quality research and outstanding teaching ias well as in multidisciplinary approaches. Please, visit the faculty’s website for more information. 

Information about the Institute for Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology can be found at https://www.universiteitleiden.nl/en/social-behavioural-sciences/cultural-anthropology-and-development-sociology. Our research program Global vulnerabilities and social resilience addresses ‘Diversity’, ‘Sustainability’ and ‘Digitalization’ as intersecting areas of critical investigation. These three themes articulate the urgent connection between economy, politics and ecology, and run as a red thread through multiple projects in the institute, firmly emplaced in a signature methodology that combines qualitative, quantitative, digital and visual methods. The institutes scientific staff work on economic and political anthropology, global sociology, the anthropology and sociology of environmental issues, citizenship and diversity, in Asia, Europe and the Middle East, Africa, Oceania and the Americas.

The Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies (KITLV) is a KNAW research institute. The KITLV conducts interdisciplinary and comparative historical research. Its research focus is Southeast Asia and the Caribbean, with an emphasis on Indonesia and the ‘Dutch’ Caribbean. It is particularly interested in such issues as state formation, violence and citizenship, processes of mobility, belonging, and the formation of ethnic and national identity, colonial and postcolonial themes, and the governance of climate change adaptation. KITLV is active in the humanities, social sciences and comparative area studies and is based on the Humanities campus of Leiden University. For more information: KITLV.

Terms and conditions
The appointment will be according to the terms of the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities (CAO Nederlandse Universiteiten). The employment will be for four years: first a contract of 12 months with an extension of 36 months after positive evaluation of capabilities and compatibility (on the basis of a 9-months paper). You are expected to start on September 1, 2022, or as soon as possible after that. The appointment must lead to the completion of a PhD thesis. Salary ranges from 2541.- to 3247.- gross per month (pay scale P) for a full-time appointment.

Leiden University offers an attractive benefits package with additional holiday (8%) and end-of-year bonuses (8.3 %), training and career development. Our individual choices model gives you some freedom to assemble your own set of terms and conditions. For international spouses we have set up a dual career programme.
 Candidates from outside the Netherlands may be eligible for a substantial tax break. More at https://www.universiteitleiden.nl/en/working-at/job-application-procedure-and-employment-conditions.

Diversity and inclusion
Diversity and inclusion are core values of Leiden University. Leiden University is committed to becoming an inclusive community which enables all students and staff to feel valued and respected and to develop their full potential. Diversity in experiences and perspectives enriches our teaching and strengthens our research. High quality teaching and research is inclusive.

For further information on this project, please get in touch with dr.
 David Kloos or prof. dr. Bart Barendregt.

Your application package should be submitted no later than
 22 augustus 2022 via the blue button in our application system. The selection process will continue until the positions are filled. Those shortlisted will be asked for a sample academic writing and invited to come to Leiden (or online) for an interview. 

Applicants should submit online:

  • A motivation letter (no more than 800 words);
  • A detailed curriculum vitae;
  • A research proposal (no more than 800 words);
  • Master thesis;
  • Names, affiliations, and contact information of two referees (referees will be contacted directly by the search committee if required).

 Enquiries from agencies are not appreciated.

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