Postdoc - Empirical studies in Spirituality’s impact on society

Updated: 4 months ago
Deadline: 05 Nov 2023

21 Oct 2023
Job Information

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU)
Research Field

Cultural studies
Researcher Profile

Recognised Researcher (R2)

Application Deadline

5 Nov 2023 - 22:59 (UTC)
Type of Contract

Job Status

Not Applicable
Hours Per Week

Is the job funded through the EU Research Framework Programme?

Not funded by an EU programme
Is the Job related to staff position within a Research Infrastructure?


Offer Description

The Chair of Hindu Spirituality and Society at the Faculty of Religion and Theology at Vrije University Amsterdam is seeking a highly motivated and dedicated Postdoc researcher to conduct empirical research on the impact of spirituality in society with a focus on spiritual organizations. This is a unique opportunity to contribute to our understanding of how spirituality influences various societal key metrics such as sustainability, health and well-being, social cohesion, while working in a prestigious academic setting.

Spirituality plays a significant role in shaping various aspects of society, and this research position aims to explore the empirical dimensions of its impact. The researcher will be responsible for conducting both quantitative and qualitative research, gathering and analyzing both primary as well as secondary data on societal key metrics, and contributing to the broader understanding of spiritual organizations' role in contemporary society.

In this research we envision strengthening the position of spirituality as a discipline contributing to various aspects of the society. The research encompasses empirical research using a mixed method approach consisting of qualitative as well as quantitative research methods and techniques.

Your duties

  • Conduct empirical research on the impact of spirituality on societal key metrics, including sustainability, health and well-being, social cohesion
  • Gather and analyze data from various sources to identify trends and patterns related to spirituality's influence on society.
  • Develop and implement research methodologies, including surveys, interviews to gather relevant data.
  • Collaborate with other researchers and experts in the field to gain insights into the role of spirituality in contemporary society.
  • Collaborate with spiritual organizations operating in the Netherlands
  • Produce scientific output, including articles published in peer-reviewed journals and presentations at conferences and seminars.
  • Collaborate with the Chair to support research material for teaching in relevant academic programs and courses such as Spirituality and Sustainability.
  • (Optional) Acquiring didactic skills under the responsibility of a teacher by giving lectures courses under the chair (max. 20% of the appointment), with the aim of obtaining the BKO-certificate

Specific Requirements
  • A completed Ph.D. degree in a relevant field such as Social Sciences, Psychology, Economics, Religious Studies, or any of the related discipline(s).
  • Knowledge and understanding of spirituality, its various dimensions, and its impact on society.
  • Proficiency in quantitative research methods, including statistics and data analysis of secondary datasets.
  • Excellent analytical and critical thinking skills.
  • Demonstrable experience or affinity with scientific research.
  • Ability to work both independently and collaboratively as part of a research team.
  • Ability to operate in a pluralistic and multi-religious context and contribute to relevant discussions.
  • Demonstrated ability to meet deadlines and deliver high-quality research outcomes.
  • Strong organizational and communication skills.
  • Proficiency in both Dutch (or willing to learn Dutch) and English languages for effective communication and research dissemination.

Additional Information

A challenging position in a socially involved organization. The salary will be in accordance with university regulations for academic personnel and amounts €3,226 (scale 10) per month during the first year and increases to €5,929 (scale 11) per month during the fourth year, based on a full-time employment. The job profile: is based on the university job ranking system and is vacant for at least 0.6 FTE.

The appointment will initially be for 1 year. After a satisfactory evaluation of the initial appointment, the contract will be extended to a total duration of 4 years.
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,
  • discount on (and occasionally exclusive access to) theater performances and courses at the Griffioen Cultural Center,
  • a wide range of sports facilities which staff may use at a modest charge, contribution to commuting expenses,
  • hybrid working enables a good work-life balance

Additional comments

Are you interested in this position? Please apply via the application button and upload your curriculum vitae and cover letter until 05/11/2023. The job interviews are planned for 16th Nov and 23rd Nov 2023, when possible please take them into account when applying for the position.

Submitting a diploma and a reference check are part of the application process.

Applications received by e-mail will not be processed.

Vacancy questions
If you have any questions regarding this vacancy, you may contact:

Name: Sharda Nandram
Position: Full professor Hindu Spirituality and Society
E-mail: [email protected]
Telephone: +31(0) 641403325

No agencies

Website for additional job details

Work Location(s)
Number of offers available
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Postal Code
De Boelelaan 1105

Where to apply



De Boelelaan 1105
Postal Code

1081 HV


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