Post-doctoral researcher Energy transition & Behavioural change (1.0 fte, three years)

Post-doctoral researcher Energy transition & Behavioural change (1.0 fte, three years)

Published Deadline Location
21 Jan 14 Feb Rotterdam

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Job description

In order to make the energy transition happen, governments are heavily dependent upon the choices of their people. For instance, about the temperature in house, the use of warm water, choice for investing in sustainable energy or the choice for an alternative heating system. Hence, the energy transition is also very much a matter of behavioural change. Together with other stakeholders, governments are thus looking for interventions that can help to spur the energy transition.

This research position is dedicated to understanding which interventions can be designed (and how) in order to influence choices and change existing behavioural routines to spur the energy transition. Thereby it is important to acknowledge that individual behaviour is not (just) the result of individual, rational choices, but is highly determined by one’s social context and social-historical background.

The post-doctoral researcher will – in close collaboration with the Public Administration chair & director of the Erasmus Governance Design Studio, and the chair in Behavioural Change – contribute to and develop design-oriented research projects which enlarges our understanding how (the context of) behaviour can be influenced, particularly regarding the energy transition. The postdoc plays a connecting role between the various disciplines within the ESSB (particularly transition sciences, psychology, sociology and public administration) to spur our understanding of the behavioural aspects of the energy transition.


Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR)


The ideal candidate has:

  • A PhD in a relevant field (e.g. Psychology, Sociology, Public Administration or related field)
  • An interest in the topic at hand
  • Succinct interest in cross-disciplinary research
  • Excellent research and methodological skills
  • Experience in organising and coordinating research projects
  • An entrepreneurial spirit and looks for new research opportunities
  • Good academic writing and presentation skills
  • Excellent communication, social, and organisational skills
  • An ambition to do both academic research but also to translate that research into relevant grab-holds for professional application
  • Working proficiency in both Dutch and English.

Conditions of employment

  • The candidate will be classified as a postdoctoral researcher in the Dutch university job-ranking system (UFO);
  • The candidate will be appointed for initially one year, which will be extended by two more years if the candidate’s performance proves satisfactory.
  • The conditions of employment comply with the CAO Nederlandse Universiteiten/ Collective Agreement Netherlands Universities (CAO NU). Salary is subject to know-how and experience and corresponds to scale 11 (CAO NU), which is between € 3.637 and € 4.978 gross per month on a full-time basis (38 hour per week; 1.0 fte). Candidates who have recently obtained their PhD and have no previous postdoc experience typically start at the beginning of the scale.
  • Erasmus University Rotterdam offers attractive terms of employment, including a holiday allowance of 8%, a year-end payment of 8.3% and 41 annual vacation days in case of a full, 40-hour workweek.
  • EUR takes part in the ABP pension scheme, and we also offer partially paid parental leave. Moreover, EUR staff members are allowed to make use of the EUR facilities, including the Erasmus sports centre and the University Library.
  • Tax benefits apply to non-Dutch citizens, conditional on permission granted by the Dutch Tax Office. Applicants should have the right to work in the Netherlands for the duration of the contract. For international spouses we have set up a dual career programme.
  • We aspire to be an inclusive organisation where everyone feels at home and therefore gets the opportunity to excel. Talent is the basis, diversity is the added value. The university believes in the enrichment that a mix of different people brings. That is why we strive to be a reflection of our student population and the city of Rotterdam with all its differences. Candidates from an ethnic minority, candidates with an international background and/or female candidates are encouraged to apply. Under the condition of equal quality and suitability, these candidates will have a priority position.


Erasmus University Rotterdam

The Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR), named after Rotterdam-born humanist and theologian Erasmus, is a research university with a strong international orientation and a pronounced social focus, both in its education and research activities. On the lively, modern campus, more than 28.000 students and scholars of more than 100 nationalities are constantly encouraged to develop their talents and meet their ambition. Our more than 2700 scientists and employees work together with all our students to solve challenges faced by global society, drawing their inspiration from the consistently dynamic and cosmopolitan city of Rotterdam. The academic education offered at our faculties is intensive, engaging and strongly focused on practical application. We increasingly perform our research in multidisciplinary teams, which are closely interwoven with international networks. In terms of research impact and the quality of its degree programmes, EUR can compete with the foremost universities in Europe, which is reflected in its consistent top-100 position in most major universities rankings. Erasmus University Rotterdam’s key values are daring, curiosity, social involvement, breaking new ground and striving for success


Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences (ESSB)

The Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences is home to a vast diversity of scientific disciplines: public administration, pedagogical sciences, psychology and sociology. In addition, the Erasmus University College, IHS, and two research institutes RISBO and DRIFT are linked to the faculty. This also reflects in the content of the (international) bachelor's and master's programs and in research.  Our activities are always focused on people and society. At the ESSB fundamental, internationally oriented research is of paramount importance. In addition, social research for professionals, policy makers, and the society is part of our research activities. ESSB offers a stimulating research environment where major national and international research grants are received. Appealing guest researchers and ambitious PhD candidates come along to conduct their research. Our education is small-scale and works with innovative forms of education such as Problem-Based Learning (PBL). Both the Dutch and English programs are highly ranked by students and alumni. ESSB is home to over 2500 students and 300 staff-members. The different disciplines are supported by the Faculty Office (for more information, please visit

ESSB has launched a strategy for the period 2019-2022. Part of the strategy is to create/strengthen four multidisciplinary pillars by specifically investing in research and education in these fields. The pillars are:

  1. Global Social Challenges
  2. Vital Cities & Citizens
  3. Behavioural Change
  4. Organisational Dynamics in the Digital Society

The current position is part of the investment in the third pillar; Behavioural Change.


  • Postdoc
  • max. 40 hours per week
  • €3637—€4978 per month
  • ESSB/20190121/289055


Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR)

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