Postdoctoral Researcher in International Law and Humanitarian Data Governance (0,8 – 1 FTE)

Postdoctoral Researcher in International Law and Humanitarian Data Governance (0,8 – 1 FTE)

Published Deadline Location
15 Jun 30 Jun Maastricht

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Job description


The European Centre on Privacy and Cybersecurity (ECPC), established under the Law Faculty of Maastricht University, offers education programmes closely intertwined with the centre’s applied research on legal issues related to personal data protection and cybersecurity. In early 2022 ECPC launched a new Humanitarian Action Programme in partnership with the International Committee of the Red Cross to address the practical and conceptual challenges emerging from the humanitarian sector’s increased use of new technologies including artificial intelligence. In settings of humanitarian action there are numerous novelties and complex issues pertaining to personal data protection and privacy, protection of other human rights, technology and digital policy and geopolitics, and ethics. The Humanitarian Action Programme will work closely with a broad range of stakeholders to confront these urgent challenges through education and research.

The Humanitarian Action Programme is training humanitarian professionals to enable them to manage privacy and security risks (among other risks) related to the sector’s digitisation, critically evaluating relevant legal/governance frameworks related to digital data, and developing best practice guidance to inform the risk management in the sector’s digital transformation. In addition, through cutting-edge research it is creating a knowledge hub on privacy, data protection, cybersecurity, and digital risk management in relation to humanitarian action.

To further strengthen and complement the expertise in our team, we are looking for an outstanding postdoctoral researcher with a PhD degree in the area of international law and humanitarian data governance. Possible focus areas for this position include, but are not limited to, international law and humanitarian technology, humanitarian data law and governance, data protection and cybersecurity in crisis contexts, humanitarian data ethics, risk management in humanitarian innovation, critical perspectives on humanitarian blockchain, etc. The ideal candidate will be able to connect questions of good governance at international level to the various uses of digital technologies in specific humanitarian contexts. The candidate should possess substantial knowledge of relevant international legal frameworks and their applicability to digital data in humanitarian and crisis environments.

As a postdoctoral researcher in international law and humanitarian data governance, you are expected to:

  • Conduct applied/empirical research on emerging digital risks (including privacy, cybersecurity issues and challenges) in humanitarian action
  • (Co-)author scientific, peer-reviewed papers for top conferences and journals
  • (Co-)convene experts for edited volumes and special issues of journals on key themes
  • Be involved in writing funding proposals
  • Contribute to teaching activities within the Humanitarian Action Programme and ECPC
  • Contribute to the design, development and co-organisation of workshops and other events related to the Humanitarian Action Programme initiative
  • Supervise master theses, where needed
  • Fulfil other administrative duties


Maastricht University (UM)


The ideal candidate fulfils the following main requirements:

  • PhD degree in preferably, but not limited to, international law, human rights, data protection cybersecurity
  • Affinity with privacy and data protection law, and/or cybersecurity and technology is an asset
  • Excellence in research and a track record of obtaining research funding
  • Has a strong stakeholders service orientation, sharp communication skills, including the ability to liaise with people across the field
  • Has excellent command of the English language (spoken & written).

The position offers considerable space for personal initiative and fulfilment. The preferred starting date is 1 September 2022 or as soon as possible thereafter.

Conditions of employment

This position (UFO profile Researcher 3) is set at salary scale 11.0 (gross salary EUR 3,821 based on a fulltime appointment) of the Collective Labour Agreement of the Dutch Universities. On top of this there will be an 8% holiday allowance and an 8,3% year-end allowance. For people recruited from abroad a reduced income tax rate may apply. The position is for a fixed period of two years (24 months)

Maastricht University has attractive employment conditions, which include a pension scheme, holidays, holiday allowance and an end of year bonus.

The terms of employment of Maastricht University are set out in the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities (CAO). Furthermore, local UM provisions also apply. For more information look at the website > About UM > Working at UM.


Maastricht University

Maastricht University is renowned for its unique, innovative, problem-based learning system, which is characterized by a small-scale and student-oriented approach. Research at UM is characterized by a multidisciplinary and thematic approach, and is concentrated in research institutes and schools. Maastricht University has around 22,000 students and about 5,000 employees. Reflecting the university's strong international profile, a fair amount of both students and staff are from abroad. The university hosts 6 faculties: Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences, Faculty of Law, School of Business and Economics, Faculty of Science and Engineering, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience.


ECPC – European Centre on Privacy and Cybersecurity

The European Centre on Privacy and Cybersecurity (ECPC), established under the Law Faculty of Maastricht University, offers executive education programmes closely intertwined with the Centre’s research on legal issues related to personal data protection and cybersecurity. A growing number of certified professionals are required to deal with new regulations and on-going developments in the privacy and cybersecurity market. In order to meet this global demand, ECPC offers a complete track of regular practice-oriented DPO training and certification courses, a full diploma track on privacy management, conferences and seminars on emerging issues and challenges. From September 2021 on ECPC offers a new Advanced Master in Privacy, Cybersecurity and Data Management. This two-year part-time programme offers an ambitious curriculum for professionals that bridges the intersection between law, technology, ethics, governance and management.


  • Postdoc; Research, development, innovation; Education
  • Law
  • 30.4—38 hours per week
  • max. €3821 per month
  • Doctorate
  • AT2022.258


Maastricht University (UM)

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Bouillonstraat 3, 6211 LH, Maastricht

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