We are looking for post-doctoral researcher (for 3 years) able to conceptualise and empirically investigate the relation between cooperative forms of housing, urban degrowth and ‘circular living’, a mode of living that reduces and reuses waste. In particular, the postdoc should develop a theoretical and conceptual framework able to connect theories of commoning, degrowth and circular economy. The researcher will carry out empirical case studies, from The Netherlands and from abroad, looking at how different modes of cooperative and collaborative housing influence material usage in the built environment. The material, architectural and design aspects of housing will be connected to the social, institutional aspects of the communities organizing those housing projects.
As post-doc you will be working as part of an international project consortium that includes university of Gothenburg, University of Barcelona, Balmes University foundation, University of Nantes, and Chalmers University. Moreover, the consortium includes partners from practice in each of these cities (architects, governments, grassroots organizations etc.). In Amsterdam, the postdoc research will be developed in cooperation with grassroots organisation and one architectural studio specialised in housing cooperatives and housing justice. What are you going to do?
The post-doc will work for 3 years on a specific subproject within the consortium researching the role of grassroots activities in achieving circular economy ambitions. The specific workpackage developed in Amsterdam focuses on degrowth and housing commons. It explores the relation between the socio-institutional profile and the ecological-circular performance of housing and the communities of dwellers. It combines socio-material aspects to explain which type of housing models can effectively promote a living form that downscales material demands in the long-run.
For this project, the post-doc will use both (secondary) quantitative and (primary) qualitative data. These include expert interviews, ethnographic observations, documents analysis. It is recommended that the postdoc can engage with the socio-institutional frameworks of commoning as well as with the material-structural components of housing (materials, heat, construction qualities, interior design etc.). For fieldwork, it is recommended to be able to understand written and spoken Dutch (passive language use is sufficient). You will
- examine the circularity spaces and practices created by grassroots housing coops, and how they integrate with the surrounding environment in creating affordability and inclusivity.
- explain how grassroots initiatives running the housing projects interact with the municipal institutions and negotiate/struggle circularity and affordability beyond existing financial powers (ie. banks, municipal funds, construction companies);
- Develop conceptual and theoretical arguments on the relation between commoning, degrowth and material cycles;
- Publish in top-ranked journals both independently and in collaboration with the PI;
- Help the PI in carrying out the project in cooperation with the consortium. This includes travelling to the partners’ location and organizing a workshop in Amsterdam;
- Organising one exposition and debate on housing and degrowth in Amsterdam, in cooperation with architectural studios and grassroots organisations in Amsterdam.