PhD Candidate in practices of caring for housing at the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Department of Society Studies, Maastricht University 1.0fte, 4 years

Updated: 2 months ago
Deadline: 20 Sep 2021

PhD Candidate in practices of caring for housing at the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Department of Society Studies, Maastricht University 1.0fte, 4 years
PhD Candidate in practices of caring for housing at the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Department of Society Studies, Maastricht University 1.0fte, 4 years
Published Deadline Location
today 20 Sep Maastricht

You are invited to apply for a PhD position within the project “Care Matters: making and valuing home in a mobile world”. This research project is funded by an Aspasia grant from the NWO and the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. The principal investigator is Dr. Lauren Wagner.
Job description

You will develop an independent PhD project related to the themes of “Care Matters”. This research agenda explores how the labour of caring for a home is changing along with increasingly mobile and partial practices of dwelling. This labour has normally been assumed as an obligation of owning and occupying housing, yet it becomes difficult to accomplish as more and more dwellers do not follow a traditional model of a static and persistent home. Through multilocal lifestyles and transnational migrations, we circulate more frequently between homes. In corollary, using platforms like AirBnB, we temporarily partition them to accommodate strangers. Each of these practices changes how houses need care and maintenance to be liveable, thrive able environments for users. Moreover, challenges to care have been presented by the COVID19 crisis, in that for some caring for home became a crucial project to create comfort for a whole household during lockdowns, while others may be unable to access – or care for – their homes across borders.

Thinking across this spectrum of housing as circulating and multiuser, this project investigates how care work is a material entanglement between a home and its humans, in order to illuminate the hidden practices of caring for housing.

As part of this application, candidates should submit a preliminary idea for their PhD project, which should include details about a site, community, or context in which they propose to pursue their research (see #5 in the Application documents). This idea does not need to be developed in extensive detail as a research proposal but should show the candidate’s independent perspective within the larger project and intended directions for research. Further details and documentation about Care Matters can be found here:

The position is 0,9 fte research and 0,1 fte teaching. The Faculty of Arts and Sciences offers BA programmes in Arts & Culture, European Studies, Digital Society, and Global Studies. Information on those and other FASoS teaching programmes can be found on our website. Other faculties at Maastricht University also host programmes, such as University College Maastricht, that provide teaching opportunities closely related to your expertise.

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Maastricht University (UM)


You hold a MA/MSc degree in anthropology, human geography, sociology or a related discipline (or are expected to obtain such a degree by October 2021). You have received excellent grades and you have an obvious interest in academic research, particularly qualitative or mixed methods approaches. You are capable of autonomously conducting original research as well as working in a team. You are fluent in English (Cambridge English Proficiency, level C2, oral and written); knowledge of other languages related to your proposed field site is an asset.

Conditions of employment

We offer a dynamic and challenging job in an internationally-oriented organisation where young people receive an advanced education and scholars conduct exciting research. You will be part of an international network of top universities and renowned scholars within the field.

We offer a 4-year full-time appointment as PhD candidate.
The first year will be a probation period, after a positive assessment the position will be extended with another 3 years.

Remuneration will be according to standard salary levels for PhD-candidates starting with a salary of € 2.395,- with a yearly growth to € 3.061,- gross a month (based on a full-time appointment).
Each year the standard salary is supplemented with a holiday allowance of 8% and an end-of-year bonus of 8.3%.

You have to be willing to move to (the vicinity of) Maastricht. If you do not already live in Maastricht (or its direct surroundings), you will be eligible for an allowance for moving costs. You may also be eligible for an allowance for alternative housing.

Other secondary conditions include e.g. a pension scheme and partially paid parental leave.

You will be provided with shared office space and a PC.

The terms of employment of Maastricht University are set out in the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities (CAO). Furthermore, local UM provisions also apply. For more information look at the website  > About UM > Working at UM .

Starting date: preferably by January 2022

Maastricht University

Maastricht University is renowned for its unique, innovative, problem-based learning system, which is characterized by a small-scale and student-oriented approach. Research at UM is characterized by a multidisciplinary and thematic approach, and is concentrated in research institutes and schools. Maastricht University has around 20,000 students and 4,700 employees. Reflecting the university's strong international profile, a fair amount of both students and staff are from abroad. The university hosts 6 faculties: Faculty of Health, Medicine and Life Sciences, Faculty of Law, School of Business and Economics, Faculty of Science and Engineering, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience.

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

The Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASoS) has about 250 staff members, and about 1,730 students. More than 77% of the students are non-Dutch (65 different nationalities). All programmes are offered in English and some are also offered in Dutch. FASoS offers four 3-year bachelor’s programmes: Arts and Culture, European Studies, Digital Society and Global Studies. It also offers eight different 1-year Master’s programmes and two 2-year research master’s programmes.

Research is organised around four programmes: Politics and Culture in Europe; Science, Technology and Society Studies; Arts, Media and Culture; and Globalisation, Transnationalism and Development. The Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences is housed in the historic city centre of Maastricht.


Graduate School

Our Graduate School of Arts and Social Sciences offers the opportunity to pursue a PhD in the interdisciplinary field of arts and social sciences. You receive a coherent program of introductory courses, intensive supervision and frequent discussion with the senior researchers inside and outside the Faculty. The Programme can be characterized by its international and interdisciplinary nature and the emphasis on cultural and societal issues of the modern world.

The School focuses on four themes:

  • Politics and Culture in Europe.
  • Maastricht University Science, Technology and Society Studies.
  • Globalisation, Transnationalism and Development.
  • Arts, Media and Culture.
  • Further information on the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences and its Graduate School may be accessed on:

    Additional information

    Further information on the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences is available on our website:

    Any inquiries about the position or the project may be addressed to the principal investigator: Lauren Wagner (

    Application procedure

    You are invited to submit:

  • A letter of motivation stating the candidate’s qualifications and reasons for interest in the position;
  • CV;
  • Grade transcript of previous education at MA/MSc level and undergraduate level;
  • One academic paper (e.g. course paper, theses, or academic publication) demonstrating your ability to engage with academic literature and present your own data and findings related to it;
  • A brief (1-2 A4 pages max, 1.5 spaced) description of your ideas for your PhD in relation to ‘Care Matters’; this should include a proposed field site or context for investigation, and may additionally include preliminary observations, related literature, or research questions to illustrate the intended direction of the project;
  • The contact information of two references (including e-mail, phone number, mailing address, and relationship to the applicant).
  • Maastricht University is committed to promoting and nurturing a diverse and inclusive community. We believe that diversity in our staff and student population contributes to the quality of research and education at UM, and strive to enable this through inclusive policies and innovative projects led by teams of staff and students. We encourage you to apply for this position.

    The deadline for submitting your application is 20 September 2021.

    Please send your application electronically to the Secretariat of the Department Technology and Society Studies:


    Apply via postal mail
    Apply via postal mail

    Don't forget to mention AcademicTransfer and the job number: AT2021.342 in your letter.

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