2 PhD candidates on Investment-Induced Displacement and Resettlement in Mozambique (1.0 FTE)

2 PhD candidates on Investment-Induced Displacement and Resettlement in Mozambique (1.0 FTE)

Published Deadline Location
17 May 20 Jun Utrecht

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Utrecht University's Faculty of Geosciences is looking for two PhD candidates. Are you interested? Then please read the full profile and apply.

Job description

The Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning has developed the challenging Research Programme “Urban Futures: Transitions Towards Economic and Social Sustainability for Cities”. In this Programme faculty members from different subdisciplines of Human Geography and Spatial Planning work closely together on topics like governance of urban transitions, smart urban governance, urban infrastructures, healthy urban living, urban inequalities and diversities, transnational mobilities, economic resilience and networks and flows in and between urban regions. The Department is responsible for the Undergraduate Programme in Human Geography and Spatial Planning and for a number of Graduate Programmes like Spatial Planning, Human Geography (Urban and Economic Geography), International Development Studies and Geographical Information Management and Applications (GIMA).

For our NWO ASPASIA project “Inside the investment frontier” in the sub discipline of International Development Studies, we are looking for two PhD-candidates.

The project background

Global investments in large-scale infrastructural development have proliferated in recent years in Africa. Proponents argue that the investments are vital for further economic and social development in peripheral regions. Critical scholars and activists contend that such development model fails to generate opportunities for local populations because infrastructure and associated land acquisitions tend to displace and resettle them with little adequate follow-up. Mozambique currently represents a frontier of global investments that have led to over fifty displacement and resettlement projects. The expansion of the investment frontier is likely to lead to more of such projects.

Meanwhile, the country has established relatively progressive policies that oblige investors to conduct community consultations and obtain consent for those who would be resettled. Yet, grievances and redress systems remain weak, and processes of reconstructing livelihoods and adequate infrastructure in resettled communities are often controversial. Previous studies have largely focused on getting the procedures right, such as determining the fairer compensation. However, little is understood about new community-building and place-making that emerge out of resettlement experiences and new infrastructure development. As resettlement projects are becoming a part of larger regional and territorial development, including urbanization, it is urgent for us to understand what kind of places are made in and around resettled communities and explore the future transitions of these places.

In the two PhD projects in this project, ethnographic and visual studies will be conducted to explore the nature and extent of various resettlement experiences in central and northern part of Mozambique. Further, based on the insights derived from these field-based studies, a series of policy recommendations will be elaborated.

PhD project 1 will demand the following activities:

  • conducting a literature study mainly in, but not limited to, the field of ‘urban infrastructure development-induced displacement and resettlement’;
  • networking actively with local organizations involved in resettlement cases along the Nacala Corridor in central Mozambique, in particular the city of Nampula and surrounding municipalities affected by new infrastructure projects: international and national researchers, development practitioners and activists;
  • mastering Portuguese language, for those who are not yet mastered (but everything is well qualified) mastering Portuguese can be a part of the activity;
  • conducting ethnographic field research using visualization techniques such as photographs, video, participatory geographical information system (GIS) or the combination of these different techniques;
  • writing and publishing the results in scientific and professional journals;
  • presenting the findings at international conferences;
  • teaching relevant courses in the Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning (10% of the appointment of the first 3 years will be allocated to teaching).

 PhD project 2 will demand the following activities:

  • conducting a literature study mainly in, but not limited to, the field of ‘mining/natural resource extraction-induced displacement and resettlement’;
  • networking actively with local organizations involved in resettlement cases in the northern part of Mozambique in the province of Cabo Delgado: international and national researchers, development practitioners and activists;
  • mastering Portuguese language, for those who are not yet mastered (but everything is well qualified) mastering Portuguese can be a part of the activity;
  • conducting ethnographic field research using visualization techniques such as photographs, video, participatory geographical information system (GIS) or the combination of these different techniques;
  • writing and publishing the results in scientific and professional journals;
  • presenting the findings at international conferences;
  • teaching relevant courses in the Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning (10% of the appointment of the first 3 years will be allocated to teaching).

Specifications

Utrecht University

Requirements

You are an enthusiastic and motivated PhD candidate who has:

  • a Master's degree in relevant social science discipline such as development studies, social/cultural anthropology, development sociology, human geography, political sciences, or an equivalent Master's;
  • experience in international field research, preferably in the global south;
  • strong qualitative research skills including interviewing, observation and writing;
  • any experience with visual methods and participatory research is an asset;
  • strong scientific writing skills;
  • an interest in globalization and justice issues, in particular in displacement and resettlement;
  • perseverance and an independent, pro-active working style;
  • the ability to work both independently and as a part of a team;
  • excellent communication skills (written and verbally) in English;
  • knowledge of Portuguese is a plus.

Conditions of employment

We offer a temporary position (1,0 FTE) for one year. Depending on a good performance, this may be extended to a total period of four years, with the specific intent that it results in a doctorate within this period. The gross salary - depending on previous qualifications and experience  - ranges between €2,222 and €2,840 (P-scale according to the Collective Labour Agreement Dutch Universities) gross per month for a full-time employment. Salaries are supplemented with a holiday bonus of 8 % and a year-end bonus of 8.3 % per year. We offer a pension scheme, (partly paid) parental leave, collective insurance schemes and flexible employment conditions (multiple choice model). More information is available at: working at Utrecht University.


Facilities for sports and child care are available on our main campus (where the Department of Earth Sciences is situated), which is located only 15 minutes away from the historical city centre of Utrecht.

Employer

A better future for everyone. This ambition motivates our scientists in executing their leading research and inspiring teaching. At Utrecht University, colleagues from various disciplines collaborate intensively towards major societal themes. Our focus is on Dynamics of Youth, Institutions for Open Societies, Life Sciences and Sustainability.

The city of Utrecht is one of the oldest cities in the Netherlands, with a charming old center and an internationally oriented culture that is strongly influenced by its century-old university. Utrecht city has been consistently ranked as one of the most livable cities in the Netherlands.

The Faculty of Geosciences conducts education and research concerning the geosphere, biosphere, atmosphere and anthroposphere. With a complement of 2,600 students (BSc and MSc) and 600 staff, the Faculty is a strong and challenging organisation. The Faculty is organised in four Departments: Innovation, Environmental & Energy Sciences, Earth Sciences, Physical Geography, and Human Geography & Urban/Regional Planning.

The Department of Human Geography and Spatial Planning has its focus on the enhancement of long-term economic developments of cities, how to cope with social inequalities and how to ensure a healthy urban living. Research on these topics takes place within our Research Programme “Urban Futures: Transitions Towards Economic and Social Sustainability for Cities”.

Our Research Programme is the basis for our Research Masters Human Geography and Geographical Information Management and Applications and Professional Masters in Human Geography, International Development Studies and Spatial Planning. The Department also runs a large and highly appreciated Bachelors Programme and is part of the Netherlands Graduate School of Urban and Regional Research for PhD candidates. Unique characteristics of the Department are a special team focusing on innovations within teaching methods and a centre of expertise which brings the knowledge from fundamental research outside our university by educational programmes for high school teachers and professional consultancy for public partners.

Specifications

  • Research, Development, Innovation
  • Economics; Behaviour and Society
  • 36—40 hours per week
  • €2222—€2840 per month
  • University Graduate
  • 973351

Employer

Location

Domplein 29, 3512 JE, Utrecht

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