Assistant Professor Reimagining accountability practices for purpose-led transformation (career track)

Updated: 2 months ago
Deadline: 21 Dec 2022

Assistant Professor Reimagining accountability practices for purpose-led transformation (career track)
Assistant Professor Reimagining accountability practices for purpose-led transformation (career track)
Published Deadline Location
yesterday 21 Dec Amsterdam

FTE: 1

Job description
The recent pandemic and the undeniable manifestation of climate change make it increasingly evident that our conventional ways of governing and innovating are not well-geared to adequately respond to the urgent sustainability and health challenges we face today: our institutionalized ways of working and thinking often prevent the required transformations rather than fostering them. At the same time, we witness a host of innovative micro-practices that offer meaningful alternatives for unproductive, routinised and institutionalised practices. Often, these micro-practices are experienced as purposeful by those involved in public encounters (street level bureaucrats, practitioners and citizens), as instances of working 'with heart and soul'. These initiatives carry great transformative potential in relation to our systems of governing, but - at the same time - are constantly contested by institutionalised ways of working and thinking in those very same systems. Especially prevailing accountability practices are often counter-effective and ask to reduce 'meaningful' practices to 'measurable' standards, ridding these practices of engagement, lived experience and situatedness. A key question is how such accountability practices can be reimagined and altered and serve as boundary objects, with transformative powers, between innovative micro-practices and incumbent regimes.
In this position you are asked to advance this research agenda by conducting inter- and transdisciplinary research on the materialisation of meaningful accountability practices (e.g. meaningful measurements, reflexive standards) into boundary objects that foster a creative, generative, or even disruptive dialectic between innovative micro-practices and institutionalized ways of working and thinking. The research includes studying and facilitating transformation within and beyond (public) organisations (such as health & welfare organisations, research institutions, governmental organisations) with a focus on enhancing the reflexive capacity of organisations, teams and professionals through interactive evaluation methodologies. Fields of empirical engagement range from youth protection, to health care, food systems transformation and climate policy.
Your duties
The tenure track position starting at the level of assistant professor (research, education, management; 40:40:20%) and is located at the Athena Institute.
Research tasks include, but are not limited to, contributing to research acquisition in this area, further conceptualising this area of research from multiple theoretical perspectives, operationalising the research for and in collaboration with specific organisations, co-designing and testing reflexive standards and meaningful measurements, and facilitating mutual learning and reflection sessions.
Teaching tasks are embedded in the wide variety of courses offered by the Athena Institute and include course coordination, workgroup coaching and lecturing as well as supervising Master students during their internships and literature reviews on diverse topics pertaining to the wider educational programme of the Athena Institute. In addition, you are expected to fulfil more overarching tasks with respect to curriculum development and quality control.
With respect to management you will supervise several PhD students, junior researchers/lecturers and postdoc researchers and participate in coordination and strategic meetings of the Athena Institute (and beyond).
  • max. 38 hours per week
  • €3974—€5439 per month
  • Amsterdam View on Google Maps

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU)

  • have a PhD degree, preferably in the field of public sector transformation, system innovation, science & technology studies, organisational change (incl. communities of practice, reflective practitioners), knowledge cocreation or other discipline(s) that shows an integrated social sciences and natural sciences background;
  • have experience with designing and facilitating multistakeholder group discussions and reflection sessions as part of change processes. You also have experience or affinity with participatory research methodologies, reflexive monitoring in action, learning histories, most significant change techniques;
  • preferably have domain-knowledge and relevant connections in the Athena domains of '(global) health & well-being' and 'food, environment & sustainability';
  • have extensive experience in working in interdisciplinary teams (open, flexible, adaptive, pro-active);
  • have good communication skills to interact successfully with students, communities, users, other stakeholders as well as researchers of other disciplines;
  • have experience with applying for research grants and externally funded projects;
  • have excellent teaching skills and you are an engaged and inspiring lecturer, as proven by student-evaluations;
  • are well capable of supervising literature studies, research projects and student internships;
  • have a strong and relevant publication track-record, commensurate with the candidate's career stage and complementing and extending the Athena Institute's research portfolio;
  • have a basic qualification education certificate (BKO);
  • and can write and speak Dutch and English fluently.

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 18 months.

A challenging career track position from Assistant Professor 2 to Assistant Professor 1 in a socially involved organization. We offer two types of contract. For candidates already living in the Netherlands, we offer a permanent position after 18 months, after a successful evaluation in your 15th month. After a successful evaluation, a path will be outlined for future academic development.
To candidates that will relocate from abroad we offer a second option next to the previous one. This will be a first (temporary) contract for the duration of six years. After two and four years the performance will be evaluated in terms of teaching, publication record, and acquisition of project funding (in addition to the annual assessment with your supervisor). After a successful evaluation permanent employment will be granted after six years and a path will be outlined for future academic development.
On full-time basis the remuneration amounts to a minimum gross monthly salary of €3,974 (scale 11) and a maximum €5,439 (scale 11), depending on your education and experience. The job profile: is based on the university job ranking system and is vacant for at least 1 FTE.
Additionally, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam offers excellent fringe benefits and various schemes and regulations to promote a good work/life balance, such as:
  • a maximum of 41 days of annual leave based on full-time employment;
  • 8% holiday allowance and 8.3% end-of-year bonus;
  • solid pension scheme (ABP);
  • possibility to save holiday hours, for sabbatical leave;
  • child daycare facilities available on campus.

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 30,000 students. We employ over 5,500 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.
The Faculty of Science
The Faculty of Science inspires researchers and students to find sustainable solutions for complex societal issues. From forest fires to big data, from obesity to medicines and from molecules to the moon: our teaching and research programmes cover the full spectrum of the natural sciences. We share knowledge and experience with leading research institutes and industries, both here in the Netherlands and abroad.
Working at the Faculty of Science means working with students, PhD candidates and researchers, all with a clear focus on their field and a broad view of the world. We employ more than 1,250 staff members, and we are home to more than 11,000 students.
Additional information
Are you interested in this position? Please apply via the application button and upload your curriculum vitae and cover letter until 21/12/2022. The vacancy will be open until the position is filled.
Applications received by e-mail will not be processed.
Vacancy questions
If you have any questions regarding this vacancy, you may contact:
Name: Dr. B.J. Regeer
Position: Associate professor transdisciplinary research for purpose-led transformation
No agencies
Working at VU Amsterdam

Working at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam means contributing to a better world. Working beyond the confidence of your own field, working with an open mind and working for the benefit of society.

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