PhD Researcher in Law

PhD Researcher in Law

Published Deadline Location
13 Jan 14 Feb Tilburg
The Department of Law, Technology, Markets, and Society (LTMS) – home of TILT and TILEC - has a vacancy for a PhD (full time for 4 years). We are looking for someone whose research covers data protection and private law. The selected candidate will contribute to the research program ‘From Regulating Human Behavior to Regulating Data’. This project is part of the Digital Legal Studies track within the sector plan for Dutch Law Schools funded by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science. This position fits within the project 'Concepts in a data-centric regulatory paradigm’, subproject ‘Consent and contracts’.

Job description

The selected candidate will contribute to the research program ‘From Regulating Human Behavior to Regulating Data’. This project is part of the Digital Legal Studies track within the sector plan for Dutch Law Schools funded by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science. This position fits within the project 'Concepts in a data-centric regulatory paradigm’, subproject ‘Consent and contracts’.

An increasing number of contracts in the so-called data economy requires that personal data is provided in some way by the buyer of goods and services. Consumers who make online purchases, who buy apps and other digital content, or who set up social media accounts, agree to provide the suppliers of those goods and services with all kinds of data about themselves and their preferences. However, often the use of data goes beyond what consumers thought they had agreed to and not always in beneficial ways. At the same time information about the consumers is collected in order to offer them targeted advertisements and create profiles. 

Both consumer law and data protection refer to consent and contracts in all facets of users’ interaction within the data economy, while processing of personal data is increasingly carried out under the legitimate interests of the data controller. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in  particular provides for a limited list of grounds based on which personal data can be collected and processed; processing is lawful, among others, when the data subject has given consent to the processing of their personal data for one or more specific purposes (Art. 6(1)(a) GDPR), when the processing is necessary for the performance of a contract to which the data subject is party or in order to take steps at the request of the data subject prior to entering into a contract (Art. 6(1)(c) GDPR) and when the processing is necessary for the purposes of the legitimate interest pursued by the controller or by a third party (Art. 6(1)(f) GDPR). Relying on any of these grounds in the context of online transaction is not free of interpretation and application difficulties. 

This particular research aims at creating a theoretical framework for the grounds that render data processing legitimate in online transactions. The project shall examine, among others, the relation between Art. 6(1)(a) and Art. 6(1)(c) GDPR, explore when 6(1)(c) GDPR can be relied upon as a legitimate ground instead of consent and investigate when Art. 6(1)(f) GDPR can be relied upon, especially in light of Recital 47 GDPR. 

Research (0,8 fte)

  • Pursue academically path-breaking research leading to an excellent PhD dissertation.
  • Actively contribute to the operationalization of LTMS research program ‘From Regulating Human Behavior to Regulating Data’.  
  • Participate in the Tilburg Graduate Law School courses and activities.
  • Be an active member of LTMS by participating in and organizing LTMS events and activities, presenting and discussing research output within LTMS, and representing LTMS outside Tilburg University. 

Teaching (0,2 FTE)

  • Co-supervise Law & Technology Master thesis students
  • Assist in the coordination and management of courses at the undergraduate and/or LLM programs that LTMS is involved in. 
  • Cooperate with other LTMS members in developing new or modifying existing courses.

Specifications

Tilburg University

Requirements

Tilburg University believes that academic excellence is achieved through the combination of outstanding research and education, in which social impact is made by sharing knowledge. In doing so, we recognize that excellence is not only achieved through individual performance, but mostly through team effort in which each team member acts as a leader connecting people. 

Applicants must: 

  • Hold a Bachelor in Law (LLB) at the time of application;
  • Hold a Master in Law (LLM), preferably with a specialization on human rights/privacy/data protection at the time of application; 
  • Have very good academic results at Master level; 
  • Show a research interest in data protection law, contract law, consumer law, as evidenced by a master thesis and/or other activities. Work that combines two or more of these regimes is preferred; 
  • Be willing to complete a PhD-project within four years, that fits with the project area and the above-mentioned research interests, and which can be completed in 4 or less years; 
  • Have experience with early academic work and/or work in NGOs or public interest bodies; 
  • Be able and willing to work in a team and undertake teaching and administrative support in parallel to the PhD-research; 
  • Have excellent communication skills in English, orally and in writing. Knowledge of the Dutch language would be an asset, but is not required; 
  • Be available to start working in March 2021, or earlier; 
  • Be present at Tilburg University during office hours, and commit to integrate in the environment provided by the department LTMS and Tilburg Law School. 

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: The total duration of the PhD trajectory is four years (48 months) and 1.0 fte.

Tilburg University offers excellent terms of employment. We believe flexibility, development, and good employee benefits are very important. We make clear agreements on career paths and offer all kinds of facilities and schemes to maintain an optimum balance between work and private life. Tilburg University fosters diversity and inclusion; that is why we pursue an active policy for inclusive teams where diverse talents can flourish.

Selected candidates will be ranked in the Dutch university employment system (UFO). The starting gross salary is € 2395,- per month (for a full-time appointment) and will raise every 12 months to a maximum of € 3061,- based on the PhD salary scale of the Collective Labor Agreement Dutch Universities. Tilburg University actively promotes equal and transparent salary between men and women by strictly applying predetermined parameters based on the candidate’s experience. Employees recruited from abroad may be eligible for the 30% tax facility- this means that 30% of your salary will be paid as a tax-free reimbursement.

The total duration of the PhD trajectory is four years (48 months) and 1.0 fte. You will initially be appointed for a fixed period of 16 months. After 12 months, an evaluation will take place. If the performance evaluation is positive, your employment contract will be extended for the remaining period of 32 months. 
 
You are entitled to a holiday allowance amounting to 8% and a year-end bonus of 8.3% of your gross yearly income. If you work 40 hours per week, you receive 41 days of paid recreational leave per year. Please visit Working at Tilburg University for more information on our employment conditions. 

Additional information

More information on the vacated position can be obtained from prof. dr. Eleni Kosta at E.Kosta@tilburguniversity.edu.

 

Specifications

  • PhD
  • Law
  • 38—40 hours per week
  • €2395—€3061 per month
  • University graduate
  • 17127

Employer

Location

Warandelaan 2, 5037 AB, Tilburg

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Application procedure

Please apply for this position online before 14-02-2021. Address your letter of interest to prof. dr. Kosta and add a resume, LLM grade transcript, and a short description of a PhD research topic indicating a clear problem statement and a research question (max. 750 words). A copy of the Master thesis is not necessary, but would be highly appreciated.

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Application procedure

Application procedure

Please apply for this position online before 14-02-2021. Address your letter of interest to prof. dr. Kosta and add a resume, LLM grade transcript, and a short description of a PhD research topic indicating a clear problem statement and a research question (max. 750 words). A copy of the Master thesis is not necessary, but would be highly appreciated.

Make sure to apply no later than 14 Feb 2021 23:58 (Europe/Amsterdam).