Ph.D. Position in Social and Behavioural Sciences (The Netherlands) Deadline: June 14, 2019

University of Amsterdam (UvA)

Application Deadline

June 14, 2019

Program Commencement

September 15, 2019

Duration of the Program

3 Years

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Program Details

The University of Amsterdam (UvA) is an intellectual hub within the Netherlands. Housed on four city campuses in or near the heart of Amsterdam, where disciplines come together and interact, its seven faculties have close links with thousands of researchers and hundreds of institutions at home and abroad. To work at the UvA is to work in an independent, creative, innovative and international climate characterised by an open atmosphere and a genuine engagement with the city of Amsterdam and society.

The University seeks a PhD candidate who is interested in interdisciplinary research into the uses and effects of social media on adolescents’ well-being, and who likes to bridge research insights developed in communication, psychology, and data science. The candidate will be part of Team AWeSome (Adolescents, Well-being, and Social Media). Project AWeSome is hosted at the Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR) at the UvA, which is the largest and best-ranked research institute of its kind in Europe. You will be supervised by Dr Ine Beyens, Dr Loes Pouwels, and Prof. Valkenburg. In addition, the project will collaborate with two external advisors, Dr Loes Keijsers, Department of Developmental Psychology at Tilburg University (TiU), and Dr Daniel Oberski, Department of Methodology and Statistics at Utrecht University (UU). The PhD candidate will be located at the UvA, with occasional travels to UU and TiU.

In the past decade, dozens of empirical studies have looked into the effects of social media use on adolescents’ well-being, often yielding inconsistent findings. With this project, you will contribute to a better understanding of how social media affect well-being by adopting a novel, person-specific statistical approach. Such an approach can now be realized due to rapid advances both in mobile communication technology and in data-analytic software. By combining a diverse set of methods, the project will validate subjectively and objectively collected social media usage sources against one another. An extensive project description is available upon request (email: ASCoR Secretariat).

Details, here.

Eligibility/ Requirements

Candidates for this position should have an academic degree in communication science, developmental psychology, artificial intelligence, or a related field. A Research Master’s degree is a plus.

In addition, you:

  • are interested in research on adolescents, well-being, and social media;
  • have excellent organizational and social skills;
  • are willing to learn and think across disciplines;
  • have good communication skills and are well able to communicate with adolescents;
  • are collaborative and like to work in a team;  
  • are fluent in spoken and written Dutch (native or near-native speaker), as conducting interviews with Dutch adolescents is an important part of the project;
  • have good statistical skills, proven expertise in R, and are eager to learn advanced statistics for longitudinal and intensive data analysis (e.g., multi-level modelling, time-series, dynamic structural equation models, machine learning);
  • have excellent English writing skills;
  • have experience with qualitative interview methods, which is not mandatory but a plus.


Application Process

Apply online here along with the following documents:

  • your CV and covering letter;
  • proof of your University degree, including grade transcripts. If you have not completed your degree at the time of application, please provide a statement from your supervisor confirming the expected date of completion of your degree;
  • an academic writing sample in English (e.g., journal article, Master’s thesis);
  • the names and contact addresses of two academic references from which information about the candidate can be obtained.

Interviews will take place on Thursday 4 July. If you are invited for an interview, you will be asked to write a 1-2 page research proposal to present at the job interview.

If you have questions about the project content, contact Ine BeyensQuestions about the application procedure and other general questions may be addressed to Ms. Kathleen Hair at the ASCoR Secretariat.

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