Your PhD research, which is to result in a dissertation, concerns corruption in the era of the ‘ethical policy’ with a focus on the role of private businesses and labour regimes in the late colonial state of the Netherlands East Indies and the Netherlands (1870s-1920s). Concessions to private businesses caused conflicts and scandals, in terms of: the conditions on which they were granted by the colonial administration to one entrepreneur, but not the other; arrangements that were made with local self-governing rulers; recruitment policies and work conditions for Chinese and Javanese indentured labourers; granted tax privileges; the ‘exorbitant’ profits that were made and how entrepreneurs used their powers in relation to their workers. These issues were at the heart of a series of colonial scandals (e.g. Pangka-scandal 1860s; Billiton-scandal 1882-1892; Deli-scandal 1902). Scandals and investigations like the Mindere Welvaartrapporten
were used to set norms, for example about the meaning of public and private duties.
You will develop a research project starting from the following umbrella questions:
a) What was at stake, in terms of legitimate rule, in the many debates about corruption that were related to the granting of concessions for plantations and mining activities
b) How was the (mis)use of the rights and powers of these companies, as reflected in public debates and formal investigations, addressed, both in the Netherlands East Indies and in the Netherlands?
In concrete terms, processes of granting concessions, political-administrative investigations into (mis)uses of concession-rights and related public/media debates will be analysed and discussed in an international comparative perspective by looking at media sources, and corporate, political and colonial archives in the Netherlands and Indonesia.Your duties
- collect and analyse information about colonial corruption in the era of the ethical policy
- present and discuss preliminary research results in the form of papers at seminars and conferences
- communicate via social and other popular media about the research results
- organize workshops and conferences with team members and partners in the Netherlands, Indonesia and other countries
- complete a dissertation
- dedicate some time to teaching at the Faculty of Humanities