Post-Doc, 1 Position for VICI Project ‘The Dialogics of Justice’

Post-Doc, 1 Position for VICI Project ‘The Dialogics of Justice’

Published Deadline Location
12 May 23 May Utrecht

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Post-Doc, 0,75 fte or 1 fte (incl. 0,25 fte teaching), 4 years

Job description

We invite applications for a Post-Doc at the University of Humanistic Studies in Utrecht, the Netherlands, in the context of a VICI project, funded by the Dutch Research Council NWO, and led by dr. Nicole L. Immler on The Dialogics of Justice, an interdisciplinary research into Transitional Justice, recognition and the art of dialogue.

The University of Humanistic Studies is characterized by an institutionalized interdisciplinarity, combining humanities and social science research. Grounded in a humanist tradition, we study ways for optimising the possibilities for people to live a dignified and meaningful life and for promoting a just and caring society.

Project description
Over the last decade, we have witnessed a rising demand for recognition by victims of colonial violence, failed peace missions, sexual abuse and ecocide worldwide. Those recognition claims for suffering are increasingly put in legal terms and then resolved with financial compensation. However, do those procedures provide the recognition and the repair these claimants hope for? There is increasingly concern that such recognition procedures may rather stabilize and naturalize power hierarchies instead of helping to transform them. Via empirical research this project aims to answer the urgent need for more knowledge on making recognition procedures more effective. Therefore the project explores legal recognition claims as broader dialogue processes between multiple parties on micro, meso and macro level to reveal how recognition works as a social, interactive process. Aim is to clarify the social implications of recognition procedures for individuals, communities, and institutions and to understand under what conditions recognition procedures can be transformative.

Project Set-up: This project explores on-going civil court cases in the Netherlands, contrasting distinct claimant groups seeking recognition of injustices within different institutional settings; all cases having a transnational character:

  1. Army: failed peace-mission in Bosnia (Ph.D.);
  2. Catholic Church: (sexual) abuse (Ph.D.);
  3. Multinational: human rights violations and ecocide in Nigeria (Ph.D.);
  4. Socio-legal analysis of all cases - including colonial wrongs (Post-Doc).

Each Ph.D. candidate will work on one case study. The Post-Doc will work on all cases studied within the project, including colonial wrongs (worked on by the team leader), pursuing a socio-legal analysis that will help to rethink future reparatory practices. 

Profile of the team
This project requires an interdisciplinary team. We are looking for researchers who have a background in Humanities and Social Sciences, who are interdisciplinary trained and are experienced in interdisciplinary research. Next to experience in qualitative research, theoretical skills are highly needed to work in such a cross-case-setting. Interdisciplinary research needs regular exchange. For this reason the candidates have to be prepared to move to Utrecht. 

Position in the UvH organisation
The Ph.D. and research projects will be carried out within the chair ‘Citizenship and Humanisation of the Public Sector’ headed by prof. Evelien Tonkens, which hosts Nicole Immler’s VICI-project.


Universiteit voor Humanistiek


  • a Ph.D. degree;
  • qualified in anthropology and (the sociology of) law, Human Rights or Transitional Justice;
  • a proven track record in conducting original scientific research and publishing the results in reputable scientific journals;
  • fluent in English and at least a good understanding in Dutch;
  • experienced in interdisciplinary research, particularly in anthropology and law;
  • a proactive, creative, and independent researcher, who is also a team player;
  • excellent interpersonal and organizational skills, to support the VICI grant holder in managing tasks, coordinating the project and supervising the Ph.D. students;
  • knowledge about the respective court cases is favouravle. 


  • to develop a methodology for socio-legal analysis to bridge the gap between anthropological knowledge and legal practices;
  • to do a socio-legal analysis, synthesizing the legal groundings of all case studies examined in The Dialogics of Justice project, and establish comparative insight;
  • to support the project leader in exploring the legal groundings of some colonial reparation cases pursuing a ‘reparatory approach’;
  • to translate the project’s gained anthropological knowledge into a socio-legal perspective which provides input for creative future (legal) solutions;
  • to deliver a report;
  • to develop a toolkit;
  • to co-edit a special issue;
  • optional: to teach students for 0.25 fte.

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 4 years.

We offer for the Post-Doc a temporary contract for the duration of 1 year with prolongation after evaluation for 3 years by proven ability. The position is classified as Researcher level 3 under the Dutch University Job Classification System UFO (salary scale 11, Collective Labour Agreement (CAO) for Dutch Universities, starting between € 3.637,= till € 4.138,= brute per month fulltime, depending on relevant experience).

Researchers from outside the Netherlands may qualify for a tax-free allowance equal to 30% of their taxable salary. The university will apply for such an allowance on their behalf.


Univeristy of Humanistic Studies (UvH)

Univeristy of Humanistic Studies (UvH)


  • Postdoc
  • Behaviour and society; Language and culture; Law
  • max. 40 hours per week
  • €3637—€4138 per month
  • Doctorate
  • AT 20-05 / B


Universiteit voor Humanistiek

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