Postdoc Position: History of Global Inequality, India (Denmark) Deadline: August 16, 2019

Aarhus University

Application Deadline

August 16, 2019

Program Commencement

October 01, 2019

Duration of the Program

2 Years

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Program Details

Aarhus University is a young, modern university established in 1928. The School of Culture and Society at Aarhus University invites applications for a two-year postdoctoral fellowship in the history of ideas. The position is full-time, and is available from 1 October 2019 or as soon as possible thereafter. 

The position will be part of the research project ‘An Intellectual History of Global Inequality, 1960-2015’. The project is generously made available by the Danish Research Fund. The grant for the overall project is a ‘Sapere Aude: Research Leader’ grant. The successful applicant will be a member of a project team of four researchers, primarily from the field of the history of ideas. The project is to be led by Associate Professor Christian Olaf Christiansen at the Department of Philosophy and History of Ideas, and will run from 2019 until 2022.

The project will investigate the historical relationship between location and the intellectual history of inequality. The research objects of this study are concepts, theories and ‘languages’ relating to international economic inequality from 1960 to 2015. The approach is historical-contextualist and combines conceptual and intellectual history, focusing upon contributions to academic and public debates by public intellectuals, especially economists, sociologists, historians and philosophers. Furthermore, the approach is comparative: we will compare the thought of Northern (primarily American), Indian, African (primarily Ghanaian) and South American (primarily Argentinian) public intellectuals. The project is thus divided into four sub-projects (with this position focusing on India), each investigating a significant geographical area in the global discourse on economic inequality, enabling us to make new comparisons and trace connections in South-South as well as in North-South exchanges. The project will be an important contribution to the global turn in intellectual and conceptual history.

The successful applicant will be responsible for the sub-project on India. The postdoc will study key Indian intellectuals and the intellectual history of international and global economic inequality in India. The applicant’s project description should propose how to expand and detail this sub-project closely within the aim, structure and methodology of the overall research project. It is crucial that the applicant demonstrates the capacity to work within the academic field of intellectual and/or conceptual history.

With this in mind, applicants should attach a project description to their letter of application, explaining how they would carry out this research task during their prospective contract, providing details on the content, timeline and expected scientific output of the work. 
The successful applicant will be expected:

  • to develop their research within the framework provided by the grant awarded, in cooperation with the team leader
  • to present their research at international meetings and publish results in peer-reviewed, international scientific journals in a timely fashion
  • to visit a leading international research institution outside Denmark for about two months to carry out research, and to do fieldwork (including interviews) in India
  • to play a role in organizing research workshops, conferences, and other such activities
  • to assist the principal investigator in writing grant applications and preparing a volume of papers for publication, following the project’s main academic conference.

The postdoc is expected to participate in the daily working environment of the research team at Aarhus University. To a limited extent, and as agreed with the PI, the successful applicant will be expected to contribute to team-taught courses at BA and MA level in her or his area of expertise.

Eligibility/ Requirements

Applicants for this position should hold a PhD degree or equivalent qualifications in the history of ideas/intellectual history, or related fields such as history, international/global studies or economic history.

The successful applicant should have documented expertise in most of the following areas:

  • intellectual and conceptual history and methodology
  • the history of economic thought (especially development economics and the economics of inequality)
  • knowledge of the geographical focal area (India)
  • global or postcolonial history relevant to the overall project (such as North-South or South-South connections)
  • experience of carrying out qualitative interviews/oral history interviews
  • inequality studies.

Applicants for the position should also document:

  • an international and relevant research profile of high research quality
  • a deep understanding of the debates and literatures relating to global and international economic inequality
  • familiarity with research contexts in India
  • the ability to work independently and in collaboration within a research group
  • experience of research organisation and research communication
  • near-native proficiency in academic English.

Application Process

The application must be submitted online in English. Apply here. The applicants should also submit:

  • a concise description of their research profile (max. one page)
  • a concise statement of motivation for applying for the position (max. one page) 
  • a research proposal for the sub-project on India (max. five pages).The description and the proposal must be uploaded together with the letter of application
  • publications (maximum three articles or book chapters), documenting high research quality and, secondarily, a publication profile highly relevant to the position.

Please note that professional references or recommendations should not be included. Applicants who are selected for an interview (or otherwise considered for the position) may be asked to provide professional references.

Only publications which are actually submitted alongside applications will be assessed; a list of publications is not sufficient. Applications which are not accompanied by such publications will not be assessed. 

For further information about the position, please contact Associate Professor Christian Olaf Christiansen e.mail:

For more information about the application, please contact HR supporter Marianne Birn (

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