Postdoctoral researcher

Postdoctoral researcher

Published Deadline Location
29 Mar 14 May Rotterdam

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Are you passionate about building sustainable futures for the planet and humanity, and about understanding the roles communities can play in the process? Do you want to be part of a cutting-edge research project that addresses the ways community enterp...

Job description

transformations towards sustainability? Then this exciting full-time two-year postdoc opportunity is for you!

The Business-Society Management department at Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM), is seeking a highly motivated postdoctoral researcher. The goal is to improve our understanding of the roles of community enterprises as drivers of societal transformations. How can community enterprises scale their impact and reshape society beyond markets and states? This is an important and timely challenge in steering sustainability transformations, as scholars and policymakers have high expectations on the roles of communities and citizens therein. Community enterprises are widely known to foster collective action locally. But what are the mechanisms through which they can achieve wider transformations to tackle urgent large-scale sustainability challenges, such as climate change?

The postdoc project is part of a new ERC Starting Grant project "Scaling the Societal Impact of Community Enterprises for Sustainability" (SCENSUS). It is led by Dr Thomas Bauwens and will be based at RSM. By creating a new interdisciplinary theory of the dynamics of community enterprises within the wider political economy, SCENSUS will advance the research frontier on collective action and organisation studies. SCENSUS aspires to change the current thinking about the role of markets and states as an inescapable dichotomy that dominates the way modern societies build institutions and organisations. The project will also contribute to emerging perspectives on a post-growth economy and alternatives to capitalism.

In this postdoc project, you will perform a quantitative analysis of the determinants of community enterprises' type and success of scaling strategies. Data for indicators of

different scaling strategies will be collected to create country-level databases. Statistical and econometric analysis will be employed to identify which internal and external factors may explain community enterprises' types and levels of scaling. You will analyse initiatives in three key sustainability fields (renewable energy, circular economy and shared mobility) across several European countries (the Netherlands, Germany, France and the United Kingdom).

The findings of this research will contribute to an interdisciplinary theory of the dynamics of community enterprises within the wider political economy. They will also support the development of management and policy recommendations to create and strengthen networks of community enterprises. This is an exciting opportunity to contribute to a growing research field and contribute to the acceleration of sustainability transformations.

Your main tasks
Your main tasks are:
  1. Contributing to the development of the theoretical framework underlying the empirical research.
  2. Compiling a database of community enterprises and their scaling strategies. Data for indicators of different scaling strategies will be collected to create country-level databases for the Netherlands, France, Germany and the UK. The project will create original datasets, and update and enrich the existing datasets that are available to the research team. The study will focus on community enterprises in three key sustainability fields: renewable energy, circular economy and shared mobility.
  3. Performing a quantitative analysis of the determinants of community enterprises' type and success of scaling strategies. Statistical and econometric analysis will be employed to identify which internal and external factors may explain their types and levels of scaling.
  4. Helping with the supervision of the PhD researchers within the SCENSUS team.
  5. Reporting your research findings at (international) conferences and workshops and in top scientific journals.
  6. Report your research findings to relevant stakeholders outside of academia, including in regional, national, international and virtual platforms and fora.


Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR)


  • Doctoral degree in management science, innovation science, social science, geography, or related disciplines.
  • Inquisitive nature, next to a drive to increase your knowledge and a passion for research.
  • Sufficient discipline to master a broad base of scientific literature, also outside of your main discipline.
  • Interdisciplinary attitude, with a clear willingness to learn from other disciplines and to engage in debates with scholars with a different disciplinary background.
  • Willingness to act as a team player in the project in close collaboration with your supervisors and other SCENSUS researchers.
  • Willingness to invest time and effort in sharing research results with the general public.

Your required competences
  • Advanced methodological skills and preferably proven experience with quantitative data collection and methods designs.
  • Social skills to engage with other colleagues and societal stakeholders and interested in experimenting with new research approaches.
  • People skills to work in a team, willingness to contribute to the work of others and to the functioning of the research team.
  • Ability to work independently and to plan tasks according to the needs of the team.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English. Good command of Dutch, German, and/or French is an asset.
  • Knowledge of, or demonstrable interest in, community enterprises.

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 24 months.

You will be offered a temporary position (1.0 FTE) for 24 months, with possibility of extension. You will be embedded in a lively and dynamic team and will work collaboratively with the other researchers. You will receive regular mentorship from the project leader. You will be able to organise your own work within the scope of the research project. Relocation to Rotterdam or its vicinity is strongly encouraged. Working from home will be possible, but you will be required to be at the office at least once a week. In general, evening and weekend work is not required. Research will be the main focus of the project. Involvement in teaching activities is possible, but not required.

The conditions of employment correspond with the collective labour agreement for Dutch Universities (CAO NU).

Salary is subject to training and experience and may vary from a minimum of € 3,974 and up to a maximum of € 5,439 gross per month (scale 11 CAO NU), based on a full-time contract of 38 hours.

Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) has attractive employment conditions, which include a holiday allowance of 8 per cent, an end-of-year bonus of 8.3 per cent, and a considerate amount of vacation days.

EUR offers all employees an annual personal career budget which can be used to advance your skills and competences. There are lots of training, development and coaching opportunities at EUR too.

Erasmus University Rotterdam aspires to be an equitable and inclusive community. We nurture an open culture, where everyone is supported to fulfil their full potential. We see inclusivity of talent as the basis of our successes, and the diversity of perspectives and people as a highly valued outcome. EUR provides equal opportunities to all employees and applicants regardless of gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, religion, ethnicity, age, neurodiversity, functional impairment, citizenship, or any other aspect which makes them unique. We look forward to welcoming you to our community.


Rotterdam School of Management Erasmus University

Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University (RSM) is one of Europe's top-ranked business schools. RSM provides ground-breaking research and education furthering excellence in all aspects of management and is based in the international port city of Rotterdam - a vital nexus of business, logistics and trade. RSM's primary focus is on developing business leaders with international careers who can become a force for positive change by carrying their innovative mindset into a sustainable future. Our first-class range of bachelor, master, MBA, PhD and executive programmes encourage them to become critical, creative, caring and collaborative thinkers and doers. Study information and activities for future students, executives and alumni are also organised from the RSM office in Chengdu, China.

RSM is a faculty of Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR). EUR is an internationally oriented university with a strong social orientation in its education and research. Our scientists and students work in close collaboration with internal and external parties to solve global, social challenges, inspired by the always dynamic and cosmopolitan Rotterdam. Our mission is therefore "Creating positive societal impact". Our academic education is intensive, active and application-oriented. Our research increasingly takes place in multidisciplinary teams, which are strongly intertwined with international networks. With our research impact and thanks to the high quality of education, EUR can compete with the top European universities. The Erasmian values function as our internal compass and make Erasmus University recognizable to the outside world: engaged with society, world citizen, connecting, entrepreneurial and open-minded.


Established in 1998, the department of Business-Society Management (B-SM) at Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University was the first of its kind within a European business school. The B-SM Department offers a social science-based perspective on managerial and organizational issues at the interface between business and society. The department members conduct world class research on how organizations can engage in shared value creation, and how, rather than contributing to society's problems, organizations can be part of the solution. Staff of the department are involved in teaching at the under- and post-graduate level, including bachelor programmes, the full-time MBA and specialized and executive master programmes. The department also delivers the school's flagship Master programme on Global Business and Sustainability. The Master programme is one of the longest running programmes in the world in the area of business and society management and continues to deliver graduates that are in high demand in today's business world.


  • Postdoc
  • Behaviour and society
  • 38—40 hours per week
  • €3974—€5439 per month
  • Doctorate
  • 3816


Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR)

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