Linked Lives and Lifestyles

Linked Lives and Lifestyles

Published Deadline Location
18 May 2 Jun Rotterdam

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Job description

How do people change their health behaviour in response to health events in people close to them (for instance, the death of a parent due to myocardial infarction, or diagnosis of diabetes type-2 in a spouse or sibling)? To what extent do changes in one spouse's health behaviour compel the other spouse to adopt a different lifestyle as well? Do siblings have an enduring impact on health behaviour?

Job description
The Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management has a job opening for a PhD researcher who will shed light on questions such as these, through the analysis of longitudinal household survey data and administrative data.

Despite decades of health promotion efforts, suboptimal health behaviour patterns remain highly prevalent in developed countries, and they account for a large share of the total disease burden. Arguably, this calls for a re-evaluation of current health promotion strategies. Building on the central notion from the lifecourse perspective that human lives are interdependent, the point of departure of this project is that work on health behaviour is typically overly strongly focused on individuals, and that more attention for people's direct social context is called for. Specifically, the project's central premise is that health events in partners and close relatives could represent an overlooked window of opportunity for health behaviour change.

The PhD researcher will be supervised by Prof. dr. Anna Petra Nieboer and Dr. Thijs van den Broek, and there are possibilities for collaborations with scholars at the University of Essex (UK) and the Norwegian Institute for Public Health (Norway).


Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR)


Excellent graduates in sociology or health sciences, preferably with a research master's degree, are invited to apply for this position. Affinity with and a good basic command of quantitative research methods are required. Applicants must have excellent speaking and writing skills in English and, preferably, Dutch.

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 4 years.

We offer a full-time position as PhD student at Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR). The PhD candidate will be based at the Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management (ESHPM). We offer a 1.5-year position with the possibility of extension by 2.5 years based on performance. The starting date will be determined together with the candidate.

Remuneration will be according to the PhD scales set by the Collective Labor Agreement for Dutch Universities (CAO-NU) and will range from € 2.541 per month in the first year to € 3.247 per month in the fourth year (gross amounts, in case of fulltime employment). Fulltime is considered to be 38 hours per week.

As a PhD student, you will be enrolled in the Erasmus Graduate School of Social Sciences and the Humanities (EGSH). The work location is Rotterdam.

In addition, EUR pays an 8% holiday allowance and an end-of-year payment of 8.3% and offers excellent secondary benefits, and a very generous leave scheme. Furthermore, EUR is affiliated with ABP for the pension provision, and we offer partially paid parental leave, fully paid extended birth leave for partners, a personal education budget, work-life balance coaches and more. Employees can also use EUR facilities, such as the Erasmus sports center and the University library.

Erasmus University Rotterdam aspires to be an equitable and inclusive community. We nurture an open culture, where everyone is supported to fulfill 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.


Erasmus University Rotterdam

Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) is an internationally oriented university with a strong social orientation in its education and research, as expressed in our mission 'Creating positive societal impact'. EUR is home to 3.700 academics and professionals and almost 33.000 students from more than 140 countries. Everything we do, we do under the credo The Erasmian Way - Making Minds Matter. We're global citizens, connecting, entrepreneurial, open-minded, and socially involved. These Erasmian Values function as our internal compass and create EUR's distinctive and recognizable profile. From these values, with a broad perspective and with an eye for diversity, different backgrounds and opinions, our employees work closely together to solve societal challenges from the dynamic and cosmopolitan city of Rotterdam. Thanks to the high quality and positive societal impact of our research and education, EUR can compete with the top European universities.

Faculty / Institute / Central service
Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management (ESHPM)

Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management (ESHPM) is part of Erasmus University Rotterdam and is responsible for a bachelor and four master programs on policy and management in healthcare, which serve 1300 students. ESHPM has about 175 employees. The position offered is within the department of Socio-Medical Sciences. The department of Socio-Medical Sciences within ESHPM addresses socio-medical themes such as patients' experiences, quality of care, and the accessibility and use of (health) care services. Other topics addressed include the consequences of care provision and care reforms for health and well-being of vulnerable groups (including vulnerable older people, older migrants, youth with chronic conditions, people with an intellectual disability, chronically ill people, and low socioeconomic status groups).


  • PhD
  • Behaviour and society
  • max. 40 hours per week
  • €2541—€3247 per month
  • University graduate
  • 3598


Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR)

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Burgemeester Oudlaan 50, 3062PA, Rotterdam

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