Post-doc Agent-Based Modelling of Social Systems

Post-doc Agent-Based Modelling of Social Systems

Published Deadline Location
15 Mar 15 Apr Amsterdam

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Job description

TheComputational Science Lab (CSL) at the Faculty of Science, and the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) in the University of Amsterdam is looking for a postdoctoral researcher to work within the broad area of agent-based modelling of social systems. You will be based at CSL and IAS where there are a number of projects that apply agent-based modelling to understand various complex social systems. This post-doc will help contribute to several existing initiatives and potentially develop new initiatives (see and The post-doc will also help to co-author a new textbook in the area of agent-based modelling and artificial societies.

This is a unique and exciting opportunity to develop your own research agenda and career around the theme of agent-based modelling and to establish exciting connections to people from across the University of Amsterdam.

What are you going to do?

You will be primarily based at the Computational Science Lab, part of the Institute of Informatics (IvI), and affiliated with the Institute for Advanced Study.

You will be supervised by Dr. Mike Lees, associate professor at the Informatics Institute. You will be working with multidisciplinary teams of computational scientists and sociologists and potentially in close collaboration with policy makers from across the Netherlands.

Your primary task will be to contribute to ongoing and new research areas around the topic of computational methods for agent-based models. These may include (but are not limited to) the following areas:
  • Large-scale simulation of Agent-based Models.
  • Agent-based models for Synthetic Population generation.
  • Calibration of Agent-based models from Microdata.
  • Data-driven model discovery.
  • Agent-based models for: Segregation, Polarisation and Inequality.
The post-doc will also contribute towards a new textbook on agent-based models for artificial societies - a Master Level textbook covering topics such as: Modelling, Population Dynamics, Spatial Microsimulation, Complex Networks, and more. This will include the development of programming exercises for the book. The candidate will co-author this book with the intention to complete within the 3 year period of the contract. The expectation is that the candidate will have 2-3 days per week to work on the research tasks and 2-3 days to work on the textbook.

Your tasks will be to:
  • Contribute to ongoing ABM projects within CSL.
  • Develop new potential research projects.
  • Investigate and pursue new funding opportunities.
  • Develop textbook material - including writing and programming.
  • Help with part of project management (e.g., co-organising meetings with stakeholders).
  • Regularly present and demonstrate intermediate results.
  • Some teaching including Master thesis supervision (approximately 10% of time).


University of Amsterdam (UvA)


  • A PhD degree in Computer Science, Quantitative Social Sciences (Sociology, Geography), Computational Science, Data Science, …
  • Decent programming experience, for example in Python.
  • Experience of Agent-based Modelling and/or Computational Social Science.
  • Excellent written English.
  • A proactive, independent mindset and a team player.
  • Strong communication skills and excellent command of English, Dutch is helpful but not required.
  • Experience of Agent-based Modelling.
All these skills are helpful, but we encourage all enthusiastic computer scientists to apply!

Conditions of employment

The position concerns temporary employment of 38 hours per week for a period of 36 months.

The position is funded by the Computational Science Lab of the University of Amsterdam (UvA), where the candidate will be appointed with a Postdoctoral researcher profile.

Your salary will be €2,960 to €4,670 gross per month (Scale 10), based on full-time employment and in keeping with the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities. We additionally offer an extensive package of secondary benefits, including 8% holiday allowance and a year-end bonus of 8.3%.

Besides the salary and a vibrant and challenging environment at Science Park we offer you multiple fringe benefits:
  • 232 holiday hours per year (based on fulltime) and extra holidays between Christmas and 1 January;
  • multiple courses to follow from our Teaching and Learning Centre;
  • a complete educational program for PhD students;
  • multiple courses on topics such as leadership for academic staff;
  • multiple courses on topics such as time management, handling stress and an online learning platform with 100+ different courses;
  • 7 weeks birth leave (partner leave) with 100% salary;
  • partly paid parental leave;
  • the possibility to set up a workplace at home;
  • a pension at ABP for which UvA pays two third part of the contribution;
  • the possibility to follow courses to learn Dutch;
  • help with housing for a studio or small apartment when you're moving from abroad.
Are you curious to read more about our extensive package of secondary employment benefits, take a look here.


Faculty of Science

The University of Amsterdam is the Netherlands' largest university, offering the widest range of academic programmes. At the UvA, 30,000 students, 6,000 staff members and 3,000 PhD candidates study and work in a diverse range of fields, connected by a culture of curiosity.

The Faculty of Science has a student body of around 8,000, as well as 1,800 members of staff working in education, research or support services. Researchers and students at the Faculty of Science are fascinated by every aspect of how the world works, be it elementary particles, the birth of the universe or the functioning of the brain.

The mission of the Informatics Institute (IvI) is to perform curiosity-driven and use-inspired fundamental research in Computer Science. The main research themes are Artificial Intelligence, Computational Science and Systems and Network Engineering. Our research involves complex information systems at large, with a focus on collaborative, data driven, computational and intelligent systems, all with a strong interactive component.

The Computational Science Lab of the Informatics Institute aims to make dynamic complex systems tractable via computational science. We study a broad range of dynamics systems in fields ranging from biomedicine to urban, or socioeconomic systems. We also develop theory of dynamic complex systems based on concepts of information processing.

Want to know more about our organisation? Read more about working atthe University of Amsterdam.


  • Postdoc
  • Natural sciences
  • max. 38 hours per week
  • Doctorate
  • 10981


University of Amsterdam (UvA)

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Science Park 904, 1098XH, Amsterdam

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