PHD POSITION for the project “VISUAL TRUST. Reliability, accountability and forgery in scientific,...

Updated: about 1 month ago
Job Type: FullTime
Deadline: 29 Nov 2021

This is a 4-years full-time doctoral academic research job (contracts are of 1 year renewed annually). The candidate will conduct research under the supervision and direction of the principal investigator (Roger Canals – University of Barcelona – Department of Social Anthropology). The general objective of this project is to analyse through a qualitative, comparative and bottom-up approach, the relationships of (mis)trust that individuals from different socio-cultural milieu establish with “social”, “religious” and “scientific” images. In other words, the principal aim is to understand how visual (mis)trust is “crafted”, “distributed”, “experienced” and “assessed”. Therefore, this project will also address the issue of the “visual fake” and the notion of “authenticity” and “originality” of current images, adopting a practise-based approach. This research will be conducted through audio-visual research methods along the lines of Visual Anthropology and Multi-Modal Anthropology. It will lead to several research outcomes (films, articles, photo-essays, among others).

This doctoral researcher will be part of a research team based at the Faculty of Geography and History at the University of Barcelona. She/he will conduct research on Task 2.2: Religious Images within Hinduism (and eventually within other religions with which Hinduism has a strong contact). This task consists in ethnographic research on the production, circulation and using of religious images within Hinduism. It will also address the presence of images inspired on Hinduism in the world of art and on Internet. The research will be conducted mainly in India, although fieldwork among Hinduist communities living on the European territory will be also taken into account (especially in Spain). This research will be based on audio-visual methods (photo-elicitation, video-elicitation, the use of camera in research, participatory photography, among others). It will include: doing participant observation and interviews with image-makers (people who craft religious images), agents of image-circulation (such as sellers of “religious art”) and “users” of religious images (that is, individuals who worship these images or “use” them for other purposes).

Special attention will be done to principles used to assess the reliability of images and the perception of the Visual Fake in the religious domain.

A special agreement will be signed with an institution specialist on this topic, preferably from India.

During the fieldwork, this research will have to comply with the ethical and methodological protocols specified in the project.

The principal duties and responsibilities of this Phd researcher will be:

-Elaborate a state of the art in relation to current investigations on anthropology of images, especially in relation to material religion and religious creativity in India.

-Contact agents involved in the making, dissemination and reception of “religious images” within Hinduism. Doing interviews and participant observation with these agents basing on an ethical and methodological protocol provided by the PI. This fieldwork will include the using of audio-visual devices. Training on the specific methodology of the project will be provided. This researcher will have to safely store the research documentation and share it with the PI, according to the established protocol. Technical devices will be provided by the project.

-Code the interviews and the images filmed or gathered during fieldwork using software for qualitative data analysis. Training for this software will be provided.

-Attend relevant public events (conferences, meetings, exhibitions) as part of the research project and organize specific events for the research (as participatory photography workshops).

-Disseminate the results of the research conducted via scientific papers, films or photographs to be presented at international, academic conferences and to be submitted to international, scientific journals. The project will cover the travel expenses related to data collection and to the participation in Conferences (up to a maximum established in the budget approved by the ERC).



FBG project number


Project title

VISUAL TRUST. Reliability, accountability and forgery in scientific, religious and social images





Gross salary per year

19.500 €

Required documents

Application letter, Curriculum vitae, up to 2 recommandation letters (optional)

Send your application to:



email subject

Phd 2 Job offer. VISUAL TRUST.

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