PhD position: The role of professionals in the transition of (healthcare) organizations

PhD position: The role of professionals in the transition of (healthcare) organizations

Published Deadline Location
6 Nov 30 Nov Enschede

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Job description

The proposed Ph.D. thesis aims to analyse transitions in public service delivery (foremost digital transformation, (de)centralization, market-driven service provision) by placing professionals at the centre. The PhD researcher will use virtual care as a case for transitions in public service delivery and analyse (1) the implications for healthcare professionals, (2) the governance of virtual care, (3) the produced impact and (4) its evaluation. The thesis will take a broad methodological perspective to address these knowledge gaps. It will investigate virtual care with an interdisciplinary lens combining, among others, public administration and health services research. This is also mirrored in the composition of the supervision team. This Ph.D. researcher will be part of the ‘Technology in Healthcare Transformations’ research community at the BMS faculty.

The challenge
In this PhD project you will investigate the role of professionals in transforming (healthcare) situations and the governance of virtual care from different perspectives, employing different methods. It is envisioned to start with a scoping review on the development of professionalism in times of organizational transition and societal transformations..

Next, a basic understanding of digital transformation in healthcare and virtual care in particular will be developed. The study will analyse determinants for successful virtual care on the macro (e.g. legislation), meso (e.g. management, leadership), and micro level (e.g. competencies). On a meta level, this will enable a reflection on digital transitions and their organizational implications.

In the following, three empirical studies are planned, in collaboration with partner hospitals in the Netherlands. There is also the potential to take an international perspective. Empirical data will be gathered in a mixed-methods-approach, employing observations, interviews, surveys and potentially experimental designs.

By the end of this project, you will have contributed substantially to our understanding of virtual professionalism and virtual street-level-bureaucracy, you will have advanced research into management of virtual care, and you will have improved healthcare delivery and employee motivation and retention in hospitals and beyond.


University of Twente (UT)


  • MSc-degree in Public Administration, Political Science, Business Administration, Health Sciences or a related discipline (also candidates close to graduating are encouraged to apply)
  • Strong interest in street-level bureaucracy and professionals in a public service delivery setting and an affinity with healthcare and technology
  • Software skills in a statistics software (e.g. R, stata) and a text coding software (e.g. atlas.ti, Nvivo), or the ability to quickly familiarise with this software
  • Demonstrably good (scientific) writing skills
  • English conversation, writing skills, and presentation skills (at least C1). Command of the Dutch language (about B1 or willingness to learn) is a pre if empirical research is done in Dutch hospitals
  • Communication and social skills related to working in interdisciplinary environments
  • A good team spirit and like to work in an interdisciplinary and internationally oriented environment

Conditions of employment

  • A fulltime 4-year PhD position with a qualifier in the first year
  • Gross monthly salary of € 2.770,- in the first year to € 3.539,- in the fourth year
  • Excellent benefits including a holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary, and end-of-year bonus of 8,3%, a solid pension scheme and health care benefits
  • 29 holidays per year in case of fulltime employment
  • Excellent mentorship in a stimulating research environment with excellent facilities
  • A personal development program within the Twente Graduate School. You will have a training programme as part of the Twente Graduate School where you and your supervisors will determine a plan for a suitable education and supervision
  • A green campus with free access to sports facilities and an international scientific community
  • A family-friendly institution that offers parental leave (both paid and unpaid)


At the department of Technology, Human and Institutional Behaviour (HIB), we are specialists in the science of behaviour change and the interplay between human behaviour and technology.
Why do we behave the way we do, and how does our behaviour change? Why is it that some people can successfully adapt their diet or lifestyle, and others seem unable to? What drives behavioural changes among people and groups? How can our governments help us to behave in ways that are healthy, sustainable and inclusive, or that will make our countries, societies and cities a safer place to live? What role can technologies play – from virtual reality or artificial intelligence to human-media interaction and value-based design – in influencing our behaviour for the better? And, conversely, what does our behaviour tell us about how these new technologies should be developed? These are some of the key questions we deal with as researchers, educators and societal problem solvers at the HIB department.


  • PhD
  • Behaviour and society
  • max. 38 hours per week
  • €2770—€3539 per month
  • University graduate
  • 1516


University of Twente (UT)

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Drienerlolaan 5, 7522NB, Enschede

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