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Postdoctoral position, Trust in Governance and Regulation in Europe - 2019BAPFSWEF263

The Research Group ‘Politics & Public Governance’ (PPG) of the Faculty of Social Sciences, the research group on ‘Government & Law’ (Faculty of Law) and the UAntwerpen Centre of Excellence GOVTRUST (University of Antwerpen) are looking for a

Postdoctoral researcher for the EU-funded Horizon 2020 project ‘Trust in Governance and Regulation in Europe’ (TiGRE)

Citizens’ trust in society’s organisations and political institutions in Europe and beyond has been put to the test by a number of high-impact events that directly relate to the functioning of governments. For example, the financial crisis, major recent data leakages and privacy-threatening behaviour by global digital players (Facebook, Google) and food scandals have created major threats for citizens’ trust in the way these societal sectors are governed and regulated by governments at different levels (EU, national, subnational). The EU-funded TiGRE (Trust in Governance and Regulation in Europe) project studies the relationships between political, administrative and regulatory actors, as well as private actors and citizens and the role of trust therein. To that extent, the TiGRE project encompasses teams from 9 countries and will deploy different research methodologies. The UAntwerpen research groups ‘Politics & Public Governance’ and ‘Government & Law’, which are both active in the Centre of Excellence GOVTRUST, participate as important partner in this research project, being involved in all work packages.

Your assignment

As postdoctoral researcher, your tasks will include conducting high-quality empirical research and helping in the coordination of international research teams. This will include the following tasks:

  • Conducting qualitative, quantitative and/or experiment research on the trust relations of political, administrative and private actors, as well as citizens in the context of specific sectors;
  • Ensuring the deliverables scheduled in the project are delivered in time and with high quality, in collaboration with other researchers in the UAntwerpen research teams and the other involved international research teams in Germany, The Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Poland, Denmark, Norway, Switzerland and Israel;
  • Supporting prof. dr. Koen Verhoest, prof. dr. Patricia Popelier, and prof. dr. Esther Van Zimmeren in the coordination of a specific work package and the work by other research teams therein;
  • Working together with other researchers on delivering high-quality international publications;
  • Supporting the dissemination and the visibility of the TiGRE project and the research work by the involved research groups.

Your profile

  • You hold a doctorate in a relevant field, such as public administration, political science, (public) law, economic or management studies or other social and human sciences.
  • You have good knowledge on at least some of the following topics or related topics: multi-level governance; the public sector; relations between citizens, societal actors and government; inter-organizational relations; trust between persons, organizations and/or in government; and regulatory governance.
  • You have a track-record in international scientific publications.
  • You are strongly oriented towards collaborations with other researchers, in particular to cooperate across borders, with a team including high-quality scholars in Germany, The Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Poland, Denmark, Norway, Switzerland and Israel.
  • You have a strong interest to study relations and trust between public and private actors using different research methods.
  • You have good knowledge in qualitative and/or qualitative methods:. Experience in one of the following methodologies is recommendable: survey methods, case study methods, content analysis (e.g. of media), statistical analysis and/or econometrics, social network analysis, and/or experimental methods.
  • You are proactive, output- and team-oriented and conscientious. You have a clear ambition to deliver high-quality scientific research and international publications. You are interested in achieving societal impact with your research through research communication and outreach activities towards citizens, media and policy makers.
  • Strong written and oral communication skills in English, and preferably also in Dutch, including an ability to present effectively to both academic and non-academic audiences.

We offer

  • a dynamic, stimulating and multi-disciplinary work environment with possibilities for intensive international collaborations and additional training in methods and theories. You will be positioned within the research group ‘Politics & Public Governance’ at the Faculty of Social Sciences but will work intensively primarily with the research group ‘Government & Law’ (Faculty of Law), and secondarily with the other research groups in the context of the UAntwerpen Centre of Excellence GOVTRUST on ‘Trust and Distrust in Multi-Level Governance’;
  • a full-time position for a term of three years (April 2020- April 2023), with an initial one-year contract followed by an evaluation on the basis of which the period can be prolonged until April 2023;
  • a close collaboration with the research manager of the Centre of Excellence GOVTRUST (see for vacancy for this function here) and the postdoc researcher on the research project 'Trust in government decision-making using big data and artificial intelligence’ (see for the vacancy here). In consultation with the candidate and if he/she is interested a combination of these functions can also be considered;
  • the date of appointment will be the 1st of April, 1st of May 2020 or soon thereafter;
  • a competitive salary.

How to apply?

  • Applications may only be submitted online, until the closing date of 16 February 2020.
  • The candidates are asked to submit a motivation letter; an up-to-date CV with a complete publication list; three key publications together with a nota of 1,5 pages, explaining why these three publications are relevant for this function. If possible, please provide one or more recommendation letters and reference contacts. All documents must be submitted in English.
  • A pre-selection will be made from the submitted applications, and selected candidates will be invited for an interview. These interviews will take place in the period of 24 February till 6 March 2020.
  • The remainder of the selection procedure is specific to the position and will be determined by the selection panel.
  • More information about the application form can be obtained from vacatures@uantwerpen.be .
  • For questions about the profile and the description of duties, please contact Prof. dr. Koen Verhoest (coordinator of the UAntwerpen team within the TiGRE project and the GOVTRUST Centre of Excellence), koen.verhoest@uantwerpen.be , Tel. +32 484 965 015.

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