Postdoctoral researcher - NIN-KNAW - Amsterdam Zuidoost

Postdoctoral researcher - NIN-KNAW - Amsterdam Zuidoost

Published Deadline Location
7 Jan 28 Jan Amsterdam Zuid-Oost

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Job description

The Social Brain Lab has an exciting opportunity for a Post-doctoral researcher in Social Decision Making and Brain Stimulation. 

Project description and methods
The Social Brain Lab, has pioneered the investigation of the mechanisms of empathy by combining rodents and humans research. We are currently looking for an ambitious postdoc that will lead the efforts to investigate the causal link between particular brain regions and behavior, using Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS).

You will be part of a three partners consortium (Di Pellegrino Lab at the University of Bologna and Sirigu Lab at the C.N.R.S. Paris) that aims at investigating the role of premotor cortices in how environmental cues bias decision-making ( You will help optimizing the Pavlovian to Instrumental task developed and used within the consortium in order to test, using TMS, the causal contribution of premotor activity in the acquisition of biases. This project does require expertise in TMS, and possibly knowledge on the topic. The project is financed by the European Initiative FLAG-ERA in collaboration with the Dutch funding agency NWO. By joining the project you will not only have the opportunity to collaborate with the expertise of the partners, but you also have the opportunity to closely collaborate with other members of the lab working with complementary expertise on neuroscience techniques ranging from optogenetic and ultrasound stimulation in rodents, to neuroimaging in humans, on the over-arching theme of the neural bases of empathy and social decision making. By working within the SBL you will have the unique opportunity to bridge and integrate results from human and rodent research.

You should expect from us:

  • Mentoring, supervision and training
  • A TMS facility
  • Direct guidance and support toward the development of a strong and cross-species social neuroscience background
  • A stimulating international research environment
  • Availability of a in-house helpful and highly competent technical department
  • Active support and mentoring in grant writing


Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW)


We expect from you:

  • PhD in neuroscience, or related fields
  • Expertise in TMS
  • Knowledge of the motor system, action perception and mirror neuron theory
  • Interest in social behavior and empathy, and in translational research
  • Highly motivated, energetic, detail orientated and capable to work and troubleshoot independently and collaboratively.
  • Have excellent oral and written communication skills in English.
  • At least one excellent publication.
  • Actively participating in the lab activities (e.g. helping organizing meetings, supervising students, ...)

We would also value:

  • Experience with imaging methods such as fMRI or EEG
  • Experience with transcranial Direct Current Stimulation
  • Advanced statistical knowledge

Conditions of employment

The position is for a period of 2 years. The first appointment is for one year with the option for an extension for the remaining period pending on an evaluation.

The salary will be commensurate with experience and institutional guidelines based on the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities; CAO NU). Full time monthly salary for a postdoctoral researcher depends on experience and ranges from € 3.270,- to € 4.474 gross per month, before taxes. A 8% holiday allowance and 8.3% year-end bonus are excluded. We offer travel expenses, paid parental leave, flexible working hours, 30 days paid leave per year and help by finding a house.

Starting date
As soon as the ideal candidate is identified.


Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience

The Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience is an Academy research institute. It conducts basic and strategic research in the neurosciences. It examines how the human brain makes awareness, perception, movement, learning, social interaction and other cognitive functions possible. It also studies how brain disorders can disrupt these functions.


Social Brain Lab

The Social Brain Lab is the results of the joint venture of the research groups of Valeria Gazzola ( and Christian Keysers (, aiming at shedding light on the neural mechanisms of empathy by combining studies in humans and rodents. The SBL is funded by multiple European (ERC, Marie Curie) and Dutch (VIDI, VICI) grants, and is characterized by an unusually diverse environment, with members from all over the world, backgrounds ranging from philosophy to engineering with an emphasis on biology and psychology, and neuroscientific techniques spanning from high field fMRI in humans to ultrasound imaging in rodents. The lab has a tradition of pushing the boundaries of technology and data analyses to further neuroscience questions.

The Netherlands Institute for Neuroscience ( is the country’s leading fundamental neuroscience research institute, and is in close collaboration with the SPINOZA imaging center, which hosts both 3T and 7T scanners and relevant expertise. The institute spearheads Neurotech-NL, the national initiative for the advancement of technologies to measure and alter brain activity.

English is the working language of the research group, the institute and is extremely well spoken in the vibrant and international city of Amsterdam, creating an attractive, progressive and easy-to-integrate environment.

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, age, protected veteran or status as disabled status, or genetic information.


  • Postdoc
  • Natural sciences
  • €3270—€4474 per month
  • Doctorate
  • AT2022-002


Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW)

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Meibergdreef 47, 1105 BA, Amsterdam Zuid-Oost

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