PhD candidate project Giving and losing sense: How CEOs navigate the disruptive gales of AI adoption

PhD candidate project Giving and losing sense: How CEOs navigate the disruptive gales of AI adoption

Published Deadline Location
25 Jan tomorrow Tilburg
Tilburg School of Social and Behavioral Sciences has a job opening for a PhD candidate for the project “Giving and losing sense: How CEOs navigate the disruptive gales of AI adoption”, Department of Organization Studies, location Tilburg.

Job description

Project scope
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is disrupting society and organizations at an unprecedented scale. Organizations may unlock considerable benefits from AI adoption, such as automating processes through generative AI. However, AI adoption may also trigger drawbacks both for internal stakeholders (e.g., job losses) and external ones (e.g., algorithmic discrimination).  In this project, the focus is on Chief Executive Officers (CEOs). They are at the society-organization interface, as they decide on whether and how to adopt AI, lead the adoption process, and are responsible for addressing any negative internal and external effects. Hence, CEOs’ understanding and interpretation of AI largely determines how their organization will traverse the ‘AI revolution’, and how it will tackle any (un)intended consequences of AI adoption for the organization and society at large. 
 
Project description
The PhD project addresses the following guiding question: How do CEOs make sense of AI and how does this sense-making relate to organizational AI adoption? The research project includes three interrelated studies. The first study concentrates on the evolution of CEO’s AI discourse in public communication events, to uncover their understanding of how AI is changing their organization, its competitive landscape, and society. The second study explores how CEOs make sense of AI adoption, and what are the individual, organizational, and external factors that they interpret as facilitating or hindering it. As the subject of AI has proven to be incredibly divisive among academics and practitioners, the third study investigates how CEOs frame their organization’s adoption of AI in light of the ‘Doomer vs. Utopian' debate, and how they make sense of the (unknown) externalities of AI adoption. As a whole, the project advances the understanding of AI adoption in organizations and uncovers how CEOs navigate its uncertain potentials and shortcomings. 

Methods 
To explore the topics of these studies, the research will take a mixed methods approach. The sample includes CEOs of listed public organizations and SMEs. The incoming PhD student will collect communication events (earnings calls, podcasts, etc.) of CEOs of listed publicly traded organizations. A large longitudinal dataset will be constructed from public sources and databases accessible via Tilburg University. This data will be analyzed through natural language processing techniques. Moreover, interviews will be conducted with CEOs of SMEs engaged in AI adoption; this data will be analyzed with a qualitative approach. 

You will collaborate with Dr. Joris Berns and Dr. Francesca Ciulli, who will be your supervisory team. The PhD project is funded by an early career Starter Grant allocated to the supervisory team at Tilburg University from the Dutch government’s sector funds program.

Your responsibilities 
The main tasks will include:

  • Reviewing existing literature to inform the development of research questions and theoretical frameworks.
  • Executing data collection and analyses.
  • For a paper-based doctoral thesis, writing high-quality research papers fit for international scientific publications on the intersection between organization and management studies, digitalization and social issues. 
  • Presenting at national and international scientific conferences and disseminating findings to non-scientific audiences (e.g., firms adopting or planning to adopt AI).
  • Teaching and thesis supervision (max 0.2 FTE). You will provide small-scale education, such as working groups and bachelor thesis supervision.

Specifications

Tilburg University

Requirements

What you contribute 
Tilburg University seeks candidates with knowledge, skills, and character. We are curious about your contribution. We think you should have the following qualities for this position: 

  • has completed or is about to complete a relevant MSc degree (preferably a research master) in management, business, or organization studies. We are open to considering applications from Psychology, Communication Studies, and other related social science disciplines. Digital science degrees will be considered only if they include a clear, demonstrable component in management, business, or organization studies.
  • has excellent research skills and data analytical abilities, including at least basic knowledge of both qualitative and quantitative research methods and statistical programs (e.g., STATA, Python, or R). Experience with natural language processing is an asset.
  • demonstrates creative and open thinking (e.g., ability to listen to and react to insights from the field, instigate the involvement of new emerging concepts, rather than solely imposing one’s personal views), pro-active learning attitude, and ability to work independently.
  • has excellent project management and organization skills.
  • has excellent communication and cooperation skills and a willingness to work in a team.
  • is proficient in English and shows advanced English writing skills.

Increasing your value
With us, you will find everything you need to maximize your potential and development. We offer excellent facilities and support for research, education, and making societal impact. In all three of these areas, we “recognize and reward” you in line with national university aspirations. Read more about careers at Tilburg University and personal development here

Conditions of employment

Your terms of employment
Your valuable contribution will be rewarded with attractive benefits and sufficient attention to work-life balance. Our offer includes:

  • A position based on 1 FTE (40 hours per week) or 0,8 FTE (32 hours per week)
  • This is a vacancy that is temporarily funded on the basis of the National Education Program, in accordance with Article 2.3 paragraph 6 sub c of the CLA for Dutch Universities. You will be given a temporary employment contract for the duration of 12 months. Upon a positive outcome of the first-year evaluation, the candidate will be offered an employment contract for the remaining three years.
  • A salary ranging from a minimum of 2,770 euros to a maximum of 3,539 euros gross per month for full time employment, based on UFO profile Promovendus and salary scale P of the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities.

In addition to your monthly salary, you will receive 41 vacation days (for a 40-hour work week), a holiday allowance (8%), and a year-end bonus (8.3%). We reimburse the full cost of sustainable commuting: walking, cycling, or public transportation. We have a moving expenses scheme that makes it attractive to live close to the university. You will be enrolled in the ABP pension fund through us. Our Options Model allows you to choose from a variety of facilities at a tax advantage. You can work in a hybrid manner: on campus and, for a reimbursement, from home. Researchers from outside the Netherlands may qualify for a tax-free allowance of 30% of their taxable salary if they meet the relevant conditions. The university applies for this allowance on their behalf.

We aim for September 1, 2024 as starting date, but the exact date can be determined together with the candidate.

Your work environment
You will work in a pleasant working environment; a green campus with plenty of facilities. At a leading, entrepreneurial, and innovative university in the humanities and social sciences. The university employs 2,400 staff members and hosts 20,000 students of some 100 different nationalities. For nearly a century, this organization has worked together with a tradition aimed at contributing to society. We strive to be a community where differences in age, gender, orientation, and cultural and religious backgrounds are valued, with equal opportunities for colleagues and students and where, moreover, all decisions take into account the importance of preserving the Earth for future generations. 
Read more about Tilburg University here.

Your school
Tilburg University is a specialized university with a high international reputation that strives to advance society by deepening the understanding of that society through research and education. Tilburg School of Social and Behavioral Sciences offers excellent, innovative education aimed at preparing students to become future leaders by focusing on knowledge, skills, and character building. The School offers a varied range of Bachelor and Master programs to its 3,000 students and is organized around the motto of "Understanding Society". The school’s intellectually stimulating working environment challenges its employees to realize their ambitions; involvement and cooperation are essential to achieve this. 
Read more about Tilburg School of Social and Behavioral Sciences here

Your Department 
The Department of Organization Studies focuses on examining the adaptiveness of organizations from a relational perspective. Its research concentrates on the interaction of organizations with their institutional environment as well as interaction within and between organizations and organizational teams. The department has a very strong research orientation with a focus on high-quality publications in leading journals in the fields of organization and management (e.g. Strategic Management Journal, Academy of Management Journal, Organization Science, Research Policy and Journal of Management). The department offers courses in various programs on the Bachelor and Master level, which are related to the PhD project, such as about strategic decision-making, digital transformation, and global management of social issues. 
Read more about the department here

Employer

Tilburg School of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Tilburg School of Social and Behavioral Sciences (TSB) is a modern, specialized university. The teaching and research of the Tilburg School of Social and Behavioral Sciences are organized around the themes of Adaptive societies, organizations, and workers, Healthy life span, Personalized prevention and care. The School's inspiring working environment challenges its workers to realize their ambitions; involvement and cooperation are essential to achieve this.
Tilburg School of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Additional information

For more information about this position, please email dr. Francesca Ciulli (f.ciulli@tilburguniversity.edu) or dr. Joris Berns (j.l.m.berns@tilburguniversity.edu).

Specifications

  • PhD
  • Behaviour and society
  • max. 40 hours per week
  • €2770—€3539 per month
  • University graduate
  • 22095

Employer

Location

Warandelaan 2, 5037 AB, Tilburg

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Application procedure

Would you like to join us with your valuable input? Then apply online by March 1, 2024. Address your motivation letter to dr. Francesca Ciulli and dr. Joris Berns and include a curriculum vitae, official grade list, MSc thesis (along with other English writing sample if MSc thesis is in Dutch). All documents should be in English (aside from the MSc thesis if originally written in another language and a Dutch grade list). 

The first round of interviews will be on a rolling basis. The second round will consist of an interview and a presentation by the candidate on the project’s topic.

The selection committee consists of:

  1. Francesca Ciulli, Associate Professor, co-chair
  2. Joris Berns, Assistant Professor, co-chair
  3. Leon Oerlemans, Professor, member

Application procedure

Application procedure

Would you like to join us with your valuable input? Then apply online by March 1, 2024. Address your motivation letter to dr. Francesca Ciulli and dr. Joris Berns and include a curriculum vitae, official grade list, MSc thesis (along with other English writing sample if MSc thesis is in Dutch). All documents should be in English (aside from the MSc thesis if originally written in another language and a Dutch grade list). 

The first round of interviews will be on a rolling basis. The second round will consist of an interview and a presentation by the candidate on the project’s topic.

The selection committee consists of:

  1. Francesca Ciulli, Associate Professor, co-chair
  2. Joris Berns, Assistant Professor, co-chair
  3. Leon Oerlemans, Professor, member

Make sure to apply no later than 1 Mar 2024 23:59 (Europe/Amsterdam).