Postdoctoral Researcher ‘Affective Borders’

Postdoctoral Researcher ‘Affective Borders’

Published Deadline Location
20 Sep 22 Oct Amsterdam

You cannot apply for this job anymore (deadline was 22 Oct 2023).

Browse the current job offers or choose an item in the top navigation above.

Are you interested in the study of emotions and affects and their role in the practices of border control? Would you like to work on the e of emotions at the EU-Schengen border through an organizational science approach?

Job description

The Department of Organization Sciences at Vrije University Amsterdam is looking for a postdoctoral researcher who will work on the research project ‘Affective Borders’ initiated and led by Dr. Ioana Vrabiescu.

The project looks at the affective dimension of border control, aiming to understand the consequences of emotions manifest in contexts where ethics, affect and organizational structures overlap. The resulting atmosphere at the border becomes a valuable way to engage in debates on the ethics of people working in border organizations. By uniquely analyzing data from two EU-Schengen air borders in Romania and in the Netherlands, this project will explore urgent member states’ claims for border control against the inflow of refugees and will investigate border guards’ affective lives and sensemaking during organizational changes. In doing so, the project will contribute to a new understanding of the affects and emotions in border and migration studies by disclosing ethical positions on migration, human rights, and liberal democracy.

Your duties

We are looking for a postdoctoral researcher who will work on the border site in Amsterdam and will complement the work done by the PI. The prospective postdoctoral researcher will document and analyze how emotions are embodied, exhibited, and explained by the border guards while at work. The researcher will investigate the ways in which the atmosphere at work is shaped by these entangled emotions and will explicate how the multi-level distribution of power is at times met with resistance or welcoming acceptance.


Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU)


  • a PhD degree in organizational ethnography or related discipline (anthropology, human geography, sociology, political science, etc.). The degree must have been obtained before the employment starting date;
  • a record of publications appropriate to the career stage, which demonstrates the ability to conduct research and publish in internationally recognized journals;
  • expertise/interest in doing ethnographic work at borders;
  • advanced knowledge of border criminalization and migration control;
  • proficiency in spoken Dutch;
  • proficiency in spoken and written English; any other spoken language is considered an advantage: Arabic, Ukrainian, etc.

Conditions of employment

A challenging position in a socially involved organization. The salary will be in accordance with university regulations for academic personnel between €4,332 (scale 11.0) to €5,929 (scale 11) per month, based on full-time employment and depending on your education and experience. The job profile: is based on the university job ranking system and is vacant for at least 0.2 FTE. Ideally, the position starts on February 1, 2024.

The appointment will initially be for 6 months.
Additionally, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam offers excellent fringe benefits and various schemes and regulations to promote a good work/life balance, such as:
  • 8% holiday allowance and 8.3% end-of-year bonus,
  • solid pension scheme (ABP),
  • good growth opportunities,
  • and hybrid working enable a good work-life balance


Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

The ambition of Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is clear: to contribute to a better world through outstanding education and ground-breaking research. We strive to be a university where personal development and commitment to society play a leading role. A university where people from different disciplines and backgrounds collaborate to achieve innovations and to generate new knowledge. Our teaching and research encompass the entire spectrum of academic endeavor – from the humanities, the social sciences and the natural sciences through to the life sciences and the medical sciences.

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is home to more than 31,000 students. We employ over 5,000 individuals. The VU campus is easily accessible and located in the heart of Amsterdam’s Zuidas district, a truly inspiring environment for teaching and research.

We are an inclusive university community. Diversity is one of our most important values. We believe that engaging in international activities and welcoming students and staff from a wide variety of backgrounds enhances the quality of our education and research. We are always looking for people who can enrich our world with their own unique perspectives and experiences.

Faculty of Social Sciences
The Faculty of Social Sciences examines the major social problems of our time from multiple perspectives. From bullying at school to dealing with transnational immigration, from the rise of populist politicians to creating a self-reliant society. Only at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam you will find all the academic disciplines needed to understand these 'wicked problems': alongside the traditional disciplines such as sociology, anthropology and politics, we also research and teach the new social sciences such as communication science and management & organization science. We do not settle for easy answers in our teaching and research. Our researchers and students are critical thinkers and doers who work together to devise surprising solutions to the problems of today.

Working at the Faculty of Social Sciences means working with colleagues from a range of academic disciplines in an inspiring and personal work and study environment with excellent research facilities. We employ more than 350 staff members, and we are home to around 3,000 students.


  • Postdoc
  • Behaviour and society
  • 7.6—19 hours per week
  • €4332—€5929 per month
  • Doctorate
  • 16137


Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU)

Learn more about this employer


De Boelelaan 1105, 1081HV, Amsterdam

View on Google Maps

Interessant voor jou