PhD position on Vulnerability and Trust in Digital Work Settings

PhD position on Vulnerability and Trust in Digital Work Settings

Published Deadline Location
3 Nov 10 Dec Enschede

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Job description

We are seeking a highly motivated and curious researcher who will work on the interplay between trust and vulnerability in technology-immersed work settings, such as hybrid work and virtual learning environments, advanced analytics ecosystems, or employee-leader-algorithms triads. You will benefit from an interdisciplinary team of people management, organization- and communication studies experts conducting innovative research on technology and work relationships, such as people analytics, algorithmic management, innovation ecosystems, and "robots as new team members". As such, you will join the IEBIS section of the High-tech Business & Entrepreneurship Department (HBE) at the Faculty of Behavioural Management and Social Sciences.
  • Are you enthusiastic about exploring the dynamics of interpersonal trust and vulnerability in the landscape of technology-immersed work settings?
  • Are you curious about pushing beyond theoretical boundaries and initiating a qualitative inquiry?
  • Do you want to immerse in purpose-driven work settings (e.g., NGOs, learning environments) to address real-world challenges?
  • Do you have a desire to make an impact on the design and management of workplace technology for the greater good of organizations and employees?

If so, we invite you to join our team and embark on an intellectually stimulating PhD adventure!

The challenge
This Ph.D. research strives to deepen our understanding of vulnerability and trust as crucial aspects of interpersonal relationships at work. Scholars across domains have unanimously recognized that vulnerability lies at the heart of trust, grounded in positive expectations of another party. Nevertheless, despite its pivotal role, the precise nuances of vulnerability within the context of trust remain under-explored. This shortage of knowledge becomes even more worrisome as growing levels of technological sophistication in the workplace highlight human vulnerability and "reshuffle" the foundation on which trust was believed to be built.


University of Twente (UT)


We are looking for a candidate who has/is:
  • A Master’s degree or equivalent in organizational psychology, sociology, business administration, social work, educational sciences, or other social sciences;
  • Affinity and/or experience in understanding the interplay of "soft" and "hard" fabrics of organizations, including emergent and unforeseen dynamics;
  • A good team spirit and the ability to work in an interdisciplinary and internationally oriented environment;
  • Able to conduct independent research and willing to develop writing and publication skills;
  • A strong passion and outstanding skills in critical thinking, empathy, and qualitative methods of scientific inquiry;
  • Good communication skills and an excellent command of English.

Conditions of employment

We encourage high responsibility and independence while collaborating with colleagues, researchers, other university staff, and partners. We follow the terms of employment by the Dutch Collective Labour Agreement for Universities (CAO). Our offer contains a full-time 4-year PhD position with a first-year qualifier; excellent mentorship in a stimulating research environment with excellent facilities; and a personal development program. It also includes:
  • Gross monthly salary of € 2.770 in the first year, increasing each year up to € 3.539 in the fourth year;
  • Excellent benefits including a holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary, an end-of-year bonus of 8.3%, and a pension scheme;
  • 29 holidays per year in case of full-time employment;
  • A training program as part of the Twente Graduate School where you and your supervisors will settle a plan for a suitable education and supervision;
  • A green campus with free access to sports facilities and an international scientific community;
  • A family-friendly institution that offers parental leave (both paid and unpaid);
  • Full status as an employee at the UT, including pension, health care benefits, and good secondary conditions are part of our collective labor agreement CAO-NU for Dutch universities.


The HBE department is dedicated to encouraging a supportive and inclusive working culture. Our aim is that all job applicants are given equal opportunities. When we select candidates for employment, it will be based on their competence and ability. To support workforce diversity, we are open to offering flexible working conditions on an individual basis to support work-life balance, which may include a contract of employment, working hours and location, or childcare arrangements.

The High Business Entrepreneurship corporate video can be watched via this link.


  • PhD
  • Behaviour and society
  • 38—40 hours per week
  • €2770—€3539 per month
  • University graduate
  • 1513


University of Twente (UT)

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Drienerlolaan 5, 7522NB, Enschede

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