Job posting: Postdoctoral Researcher, Department Technology and Society Studies, Maastricht University


Postdoctoral researcher, historian, at the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Department Technology and Society Studies, Maastricht University, the Netherlands

1.00 fte, 3 years

Applicants are invited for a 3-year postdoctoral position within the project ?Making clinical sense: A comparative study of how doctors learn in digital times?. The project is funded by the European Research Council (Starting Grant), awarded to the principal investigator, Anna Harris.

Reference number: AT2017.223

Research project

Making Clinical Sense is a comparative study of how technologies are implicated in bodily, sensory knowing of the world, through the case of medical education. Specifically, the project brings ethnographic and historical insights together to interrogate the role of pedagogical technologies in how doctors learn the craft skills of their profession. Historical research, mainly oral histories complemented by archival research, is to be conducted in conjunction with three ethnographies at different medical schools in Ghana, Hungary and the Netherlands (to be conducted by three anthropologists). While the ethnographers will focus on practices in the contemporary context, the historian will focus on the introduction and incorporation of technologies (for example video, lectures, simulation and phones) in medical education in the recent past. More details about the study can be found on the project website:

Job description

This is an exciting opportunity to join a relatively new research team carrying out comparative collaborative work related to medical practices, media, learning, sensing and technologies. In particular we are looking for a historian to conduct oral history interviews, and relevant archival research, in Budapest, Tamale and Maastricht. The historian will attend to doctors? learning and teaching with technologies. He/she will work independently and in collaboration with the two PhD ethnographers and the principal investigator (PI) of the project, Anna Harris. The postdoctoral researcher will have the opportunity to expand on the details of their own research based on their expertise, the material they gather and their own ideas, in consultation with the PI. Creative approaches in particular are encouraged. They will also work synergistically and collectively with the rest of the team. For example, they will: play a crucial role in the conceptual and methodological innovations required by the project as a collective endeavour; lead, and contribute to, academic publications; participate in team meetings; offer active support to the PhDs; engage in presentations; and be involved in the co-organisation of workshops and other events related to the project.


Historians who have a completed PhD with methodological experience in oral history interviewing, are invited to apply. We are particularly looking for historians with research backgrounds related to the history of medicine, technology, craft, media, education or other fields related to the project. The postdoctoral researcher will be based in Maastricht and will spend several months conducting interviews in Hungary and in Ghana. The successful candidate must be willing to travel, be open to working together with a team of anthropologists and STS scholars on a collaborative project, and have excellent organisational abilities. Excellent communication and writing skills in English are a prerequisite, since the candidates will be engaging on an international level, collaborating with other team members in English and producing English-language publications. Knowledge of Hungarian or a Ghanaian language is an advantage, however not essential as interpreters will be hired for the oral history interviews if necessary.

Maastricht University

Maastricht University is renowned for its unique, innovative, problem-based learning system, which is characterized by a small-scale and student-oriented approach. Research at UM is characterized by a multidisciplinary and thematic approach, and is concentrated in research institutes and schools. Maastricht University has around 16,000 students and 4,000 employees. Reflecting the university’s strong international profile, a considerable number of both students and staff are from abroad. The university hosts six faculties: the Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences, the Faculty of Law, the School of Business and Economics, the Faculty of Humanities and Sciences, the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, the Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience.

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

The Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASoS) has about 250 staff members, and about 1,600 students. More than 75% of the students are non-Dutch (almost 40 different nationalities). All programmes are offered in English and some are also offered in Dutch. FASoS offers two 3-year Bachelor?s programmes: Arts and Culture and European Studies. It also offers six different 1-year Master?s programmes and two 2-year research Master?s programmes. Research is organised around four programmes: Politics and Culture in Europe; Science, Technology and Society Studies; Arts, Media and Culture; and Globalisation, Transnationalism and Development. The Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences is housed in the historic city centre of Maastricht.

What we have to offer

We offer a dynamic and challenging job in an internationally-oriented organisation where young people receive an advanced education and scholars conduct exciting research. The postdoctoral researcher will have the unique opportunity to carry out research within one or more of the four themes within the research programme. They will be part of an international network of top universities and renowned scholars within the field.
We offer a 1.00 fte appointment as Researcher for 3 years. The first year will be a probation period, after a positive assessment the position will be extended for the remaining two years.
Your position of Post-doctoral Researcher (Onderzoeker 3) will consist of 100% research.

Remuneration will be according to standard salary levels, depending on education and relevant work experience. This implies a gross monthly salary of about ? 3.068,00 per month, scale level 10 (based on a full-time appointment). Each year the standard salary is supplemented with a holiday allowance of 8% and an end-of-year bonus of 8.3%. After a positive assessment a promotion to scale 11 is possible in the 2nd year.

You have to be willing to move to (the vicinity of) Maastricht. If you do not already live in Maastricht (or its direct surroundings) you will be eligible for an allowance for moving costs. If you do not already live in Maastricht (or its direct surroundings) you might be eligible for an allowance for alternative housing. Other secondary conditions include e.g. a pension scheme and partially paid parental leave. You will be provided with shared office space and a PC.

Starting date: preferably 1st December 2017


Further information on the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences is available on our website:
Any inquiries about the position or the project may be addressed to Anna Harris: [email protected]

The Programme can be characterized by its international and interdisciplinary nature and the emphasis on cultural and societal issues of the modern world. Further information on the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences may be accessed on: Maastricht University?s Terms of Employment are laid down in the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities (CAO). Furthermore, local university provisions apply as well. For more information please see the website: Support / UM employees. For more details about the application procedure, please click on ?Solliciteer?


Interested candidates are invited to submit:
1. A letter of motivation summarising relevant experience and reasons for interest in the position.
2. A CV including a complete list of publications.
3. A grade transcript of previous education at Master/graduate level.
4. PhD degree certificate.
5. Their best article or book chapter, preferably single-authored.

Please send your application electronically to the Secretariat of the department Technology and Society Studies, [email protected]

The deadline for submitting your application is 14th September 2017

All applicants will be notified within one month following the deadline as to whether or not they have been selected for an interview with the search committee. Short-listed candidates will be asked to write a research proposal related to the project described above, of 1,000 words (further details will be supplied) and provide two references. Interviews will take place in Maastricht and/or via Skype.