Research associate

Research associate

Published Deadline Location
3 Jun 3 Jul Utrecht

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We are looking for an excellent researcher interested in working in an academic-practitioner led consortium promoting restraint by armed actors.

Job description

We are looking for an excellent researcher interested in working in an academic-practitioner led consortium promoting restraint by armed actors. Would you like to contribute to the effective prevention and reduction of humanitarian need and civilian harm and facilitate a broader protective environment in armed conflict? Apply now!

Your job
The Beyond Compliance Consortium (BCC) - Building Evidence on Promoting Restraint by Armed Actors is a three year research programme funded by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO). The Consortium is built of nine academic-practitioner partner organisations: the University of York (Principal Investigator - PI), the University of Glasgow (Co-Investigator - CoI), Utrecht University (CoI), Watchlist on Children and Armed Conflict (CoI), War Child UK, Diakonia International Humanitarian Law Centre, Center for Civilians in Conflict, Centre on Armed Groups, Fight for Humanity.

The BCC Research Programme will contribute to the effective prevention and reduction of humanitarian need and civilian harm and facilitate a broader protective environment in armed conflict. This will be achieved by improving the strategic understanding and operational and policy know-how of key stakeholders, including the FCDO, on what interventions are most effective in generating compliance and promoting restraint by a range of armed actors. The programme is inter-and transdisciplinary in character and draws on qualitative fieldwork conducted in nine conflict-affected countries, on quantitative methods, and integrates an FCDO Research Line providing ongoing written advice to the FCDO on the topic of the research. Katharine Fortin (co-Investigator of the project at Utrecht University) is currently hiring a Research Associate for two days a week to carry out a range of research and support tasks for the project team. The role-holder will report directly to Katharine Fortin and will be employed by Utrecht University.

The successful candidate will be entrusted (at different times) with the following tasks:
  • systematic identification and analysis of legal and non-legal literature relevant to international humanitarian law, human rights law, civilian protection and compliance;
  • assistance with providing research input on each component of the project, including analysis of qualitative and quantitative studies on core concepts, database design, and empirical legal research;
  • preparation of working papers or assisting with preparation of academic papers on core concepts relevant to the project;
  • tasks associated with the FCDO Research Line component of the project, involving liaising with consortium partners, streamlining Research Line processes, managing research requests, and drafting of reports/ outputs of varying lengths (5-20 pages);
  • tasks associated with the organisation of consortium meetings, project management and communication strategy;
  • tasks associated with the Beyond Compliance: In Conversation podcast.


Utrecht University


The ideal candidate for this position will have the following qualities:
  • preferably a PhD in international law, with a specialism in international humanitarian law or equivalent professional experience in a research/ policy setting, requiring excellent research and writing skills;
  • proven affinity with international humanitarian law, international human rights law, public international law and interest in civilian harm and humanitarian need;
  • experience with conducting research outside law in social and political sciences;
  • excellent analytical and writing skills, with proven capability of producing different kinds of written work for a variety of audiences e.g. academic, policy briefs;
  • proven ability to work independently and reliably under time pressure with good eye for accuracy;
  • proficiency in communicating and liaising with different professional partners, monitoring deadlines and processes;
  • willingness to travel- if necessary -to consortium meetings;
  • ability to start work as soon as possible.

This is a position that would be suitable for an individual who is as much interested in academic research as making connections with different NGOs working on issues of civilian harm and humanitarian need.

Conditions of employment

We offer:
  • a position ( 0.4 FTE) for one year, with a possible extension until 31 March 2027 upon successful assessment;
  • a full-time gross salary between €3,226 and €4,786 in scale 10/11 of the Collective Labour Agreement Dutch Universities (CAO NU);
  • 8% holiday bonus and 8.3% end-of-year bonus;
  • a pension scheme, partially paid parental leave, and flexible employment conditions based on the Collective Labour Agreement Dutch Universities.

In addition to the employment conditions from the CAO for Dutch Universities, Utrecht University has a number of its own arrangements. These include agreements on professional development, leave arrangements, sports and cultural schemes and you get discounts on software and other IT products. We also give you the opportunity to expand your terms of employment through the Employment Conditions Selection Model. This is how we encourage you to grow.

For more information, please visit working at Utrecht University.


Universiteit Utrecht

A better future for everyone. This ambition motivates our scientists in executing their leading research and inspiring teaching. At Utrecht University, the various disciplines collaborate intensively towards major strategic themes. Our focus is on Dynamics of Youth, Institutions for Open Societies, Life Sciences and Pathways to Sustainability. Sharing science, shaping tomorrow.

The Faculty of Law, Economics and Governance is a faculty at the heart of society, with a strong focus on social issues. Our subjects of Law, Economics and Governance give us a strong mix of academic disciplines that complement and enhance each other. This is a unique combination and a mark of our faculty's strength.

UU School of Law
The Utrecht University School of Law has provided quality research and education for more than 350 years. Constant innovation has enabled the School to maintain its leading position. Top-ranking research is conducted in all important legal fields: private law, criminal law, constitutional and administrative law, EU law and public international law. Researchers collaborate intensively with foreign partners, mainly from the angle of European and comparative law. The School of Law also conducts contract research and consultancy for other organisations. The extensive educational programme is based on academic research conducted within the faculty of Law, Economics and Governance. Students are trained to be highly qualified, internationally-oriented lawyers on the basis of modern didactical principles.


  • Research, development, innovation
  • Economics; Law
  • 12—16 hours per week
  • €3226—€5090 per month
  • University graduate
  • 3965



Janskerkhof 3, 3512BK, Utrecht

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