PhD Project: Generation AI: Addressing Misinformation Challenges in the Generative AI Era

PhD Project: Generation AI: Addressing Misinformation Challenges in the Generative AI Era

Published Deadline Location
26 Apr 16 May Amsterdam

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Job description

Are you interested in how adolescents experience generative AI in social media, and who is most susceptible to the (un)intentional creation, sharing, and consumption of misinformation? Do you want to know more about how we can empower susceptible youth to competently engage with generative AI in social media to reduce risks of generative-AI-based misinformation? Then apply for this PhD project!

We are looking for an ambitious PhD Researcher for the four-year project “Generation AI: Addressing Misinformation Challenges in the Generative AI Era”. The PhD Candidate is embedded in the Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR) and is part of the Youth and Media Entertainment Program Group

What are you going to do
Misinformation and disinformation are widely seen as big societal threats, both in the Netherlands and beyond. These threats call for more research and for new solutions to make citizens and societal groups more resilient against mis- and disinformation. This is why the Department of Communication Science at the University of Amsterdam has launched a new initiative focusing on the causes, content, consequences, and counterstrategies against mis- and disinformation in our digital society.

This PhD project is part of this initiative and will specifically address the topic of misinformation in relation to youth and generative AI.

Generative AI poses a significant threat to our media and communication landscape by facilitating the widespread creation and dissemination of synthetic content at minimal cost. Of particular concern are young individuals, who are disproportionately affected by the opportunities and challenges presented in this digital realm. Their heavy reliance on social platforms, which increasingly incorporate generative AI tools, increases the likelihood that they are exposed to generative AI in their daily life. Moreover, they are still developing the critical thinking skills needed for resilience in this space, leaving them particularly vulnerable to the creation, sharing, and ill-effects of misinformation. Despite this susceptibility, research on misinformation has largely overlooked the experiences of youth, while at the same time, the understanding of generative AI remains in its infancy. To address this gap, this project aims to: (1) investigate how adolescents (aged 13-17) perceive and navigate (the risks and benefits of) generative AI within the context of misinformation; (2) identify indicators of adolescents’ susceptibility to the negative impacts of AI-generated misinformation; and (3) co-create and experimentally evaluate a generative AI competency intervention designed with, and specifically for, adolescents. In doing so, Project Generation AI will shed light on the perceptions and experiences of generative AI among adolescents, a demographic often overlooked; will provide insight into which adolescents are more susceptible (and which are more resilient) to the adverse effects of AI-generated misinformation; and lastly, delivers a scalable intervention designed to bolster the resilience of susceptible adolescents against AI-generated misinformation.

Methods used in the project include qualitative interviews, surveys, co-creation, and experimentation. The PhD Candidate will write a paper-based dissertation and strive to publish the results of individual sub-studies in important journals in the field of communication science.

The project will be supervised by dr. Tom Dobber, dr. Hande Sungur, dr. Hilde Voorveld, and prof. Dr. Jessica Piotrowski

Tasks include:
  • completing an English-language PhD dissertation consisting of research articles within the appointment period;
  • conducting qualitative interviews with adolescents;
  • conducting a survey on identifying susceptibility factors in adolescents;
  • working with adolescents to develop an intervention in co-creation;
  • conducting an experiment with adolescents to empirically test the intervention;
  • conducting data analysis and associated writing of research articles;
  • presenting the work at national and international conferences
  • spending 10% of your time on teaching-related tasks.

What we are looking for
You have:
  • a (research) master’s degree in Communication Science or in another discipline relevant to the project such as Psychology
  • Candidates with another (research) master’s degree may apply but should motivate why their experience suffices for this project.
  • experience with quantitative and/or qualitative research methods (interviews, survey, experiment, co-creation)
  • an excellent spoken and written command of Dutch (as this project will comprise conducting Dutch-language interviews and working with Dutch adolescents to develop a Dutch-language intervention)
  • an excellent spoken and written command of English (as you will write an English-language dissertation and present at international conferences)
  • the motivation to work in an interdisciplinary team.

You are:
  • passionate about research, particularly related to youth and media entertainment
  • interested in working in an interdisciplinary team
  • open to feedback
  • able to work independently
  • eager to learn and to develop new skills
  • organized, flexible and have attention to detail
  • commitment to open science

What can we offer you
The planned starting date for this project is September 1, 2024. The position concerns temporary employment of 1.0 fte (38 hours per week) for a maximum term of 4 years. The initial employment is for one year. Following a positive assessment and barring altered circumstances, this term will be extended by a maximum of 3 years, which should result in the conferral of a doctorate.

We will put together a curriculum which will also include the opportunity to attend training courses and both national and international events. The position includes teaching duties (approximately 10%). For this position the PhD Candidate (Promovendus) profile applies.

Your salary will be €2,770 gross per month in the first year and will increase to €3,539 in the final year, based on full-time employment and in keeping with the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities. We additionally offer an extensive package of secondary benefits, including 8% holiday allowance and a year-end bonus of 8.3%.

The UvA offers excellent possibilities for further professional development and education.

What else do we offer
  • a position in which initiative and input are highly valued
  • an enthusiastic and warm team that is open to new colleagues
  • an inspiring academic and international working environment in the heart of Amsterdam.

About us
The Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR) is the research institute for the Communication Science Department in the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences at the University of Amsterdam.

A challenging work environment with a variety of duties and ample scope for individual initiative and development within an inspiring organization. The social and behavioral sciences play a leading role in addressing the major societal challenges faced by the world, the Netherlands and Amsterdam, now and in the future.

To work at the University of Amsterdam is to work in a discerning, independent, creative, innovative and international climate characterized by an open atmosphere and a genuine engagement with the city of Amsterdam and society. Here you can read more about working at the University of Amsterdam.

Do you have any questions or do you require additional information? Please contact:

dr. Tom Dobber or dr. Hande Sungur

Job application
Do you recognize yourself in the job profile? Then we look forward to receiving your application by 16 May 2024. You may apply online by using the link below. Applications by email are not considered. A first round of interviews is planned in the morning of 24 May 2024

Applications in .pdf should include:
  • a curriculum vitae
  • a letter of motivation

The UvA is an equal-opportunity employer. We prioritise diversity and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for everyone. We value a spirit of enquiry and perseverance, provide the space to keep asking questions, and promote a culture of curiosity and creativity.

No agencies please.

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University of Amsterdam (UvA)


  • PhD
  • Behaviour and society
  • max. 38 hours per week
  • €2770—€3539 per month
  • University graduate
  • 12924


University of Amsterdam (UvA)

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