University of Liège PhD and Postdoctoral Scholarships, Belgium

Publish Date: Sep 08, 2016

Deadline: Oct 07, 2016

University of Liège PhD and Postdoctoral Scholarships

One PhD scholarship and one Postdoctoral scholarship on social protection policies and transnational migration

Université de Liège (Belgium), Faculty of Social Sciences (FaSS), Centre for Ethnic and Migration Studies (CEDEM)

Applications are invited for scholarships to work at doctoral and post-doctoral level as part of the Migration, Transnationalism and Social Protection in (post-)crisis Europe project (MiTSoPro).

Application deadline: 7 October 2016.

Start date: November 2016


• One doctoral position: full-time, fixed-term position available for 4 years

• One post-doctoral position: full-time, fixed-term position available for 3 years

About the MiTSoPro ERC Starting grant project

The scholarships are attached to the European Research Council (ERC) Starting Grant for the project, Migration, Transnationalism and Social Protection in (post-)crisis Europe (MiTSoPro) led by Dr Jean-Michel Lafleur. MiTSiPro articulates social policy and migration studies’ approaches to ‘transnational social protection’ defined as migrants’ cross-border strategies to cope with social risks in areas such as health or unemployment that combine entitlements to host and home state-based public welfare policies and market-, family- and communitybased practices. This study combines large-N analysis of social protection policies and programs that home countries make accessible to their citizens abroad (EU-28 + 12 non-EU countries) with multisited ethnographic fieldwork to qualitatively assess the informal social protection strategies used by migrants and examine their interaction with formal host and home state social protection provisions.

Research Environment

The Faculty of Social Sciences (FaSS) of the University of Liège is a small and dynamic faculty committed to the development of research that spans beyond Belgian borders, as shown by its two recently awarded ERC grants and its involvement in numerous FP and Horizon 2020 research projects. Researchers hired to work on the MiTSoPro project will be part of the Centre for Ethnic and Migration Studies (CEDEM), one of Belgium’s pioneering and leading research centres in the field of migration and a founding-member of the IMISCOE Research Network. Beyond their involvement in MiTSoPro, researchers will be expected to participate in the intellectual life of FaSS and CEDEM and teach within the Master Degree in Immigration Studies (in English) organized jointly with Pompeu Fabra University (Barcelona).

Position: One doctoral position: full-time, fixed-term position available for 4 years

Subproject summary:

This first step of the MiTSoPro project consists in identifying the social protection policies and programs that home countries make accessible to their citizens abroad, and then compiling this information into a qualitative online database. Together with the postdoctoral candidate, the doctoral student will compile country-specific information into an online database based on reports drafted by country experts. In a PhD dissertation, the doctoral candidate is expected to make use of this data to contribute to a better understanding of the type of social protection policies sending states design for citizens abroad and their motivation to do so.

Tasks expected from the PhD candidate

• Develop a qualitative database on sending states social protection policies, drawing on the input of country experts

• Write and complete a PhD dissertation on a question directly related to this topic

• Participate in the political & social sciences Ph.D. programme at ULg and in the intellectual life of FaSS and CEDEM (including teaching).

• Submit for publication a minimum of two articles or book chapters

• Present research results in international conferences

• Participate in administrative tasks related to the project (reporting, conference organizations…)

All work would be expected to be done in close consultation with the Principal Investigator and other members of the MiTSoPro project team.

Profile Needed

• MA in the Social Sciences or the Political Science fields (specialty in social policy is an asset)

• Language skills: English (French and other languages are an asset)

• Ability and interest to work in a team

What we offer

• Attractive scholarship

• Resources to conduct fieldwork and participate in conferences and summer schools

• Opportunities to train and develop new skills

• A stimulating and international research environment located a train ride away from Brussels, Paris, London, Cologne and Maastricht

• Possibility to design a joint PhD programme with another European university

How to apply?

The selection process occurs in 2 steps.

First, applications must be submitted electronically in English to Jean-Michel Lafleur ( ) by 7 October 2016 with the message subject, ‘MiTSoPro_PhD’. The following documents must be attached to the e-mail in two separate PDF files: 1) In the first file, named ‘Motivation_applicant’s last name’:

• A motivation letter (maximum 800 words);

• A CV with detailed information on degree results and language skills;

• The names and contact details of two reference persons

2) In the second file, named ‘Sample_applicant’s last name’:

• one writing sample (e.g. essay or MA thesis chapter) in English or French demonstrating the applicant’s relevant analytical capacities and methodological rigor (single-spaced, maximum 10,000 words)

Second, short listed candidates will be interviewed in person at ULg or remotely via Skype in November 2016. The interview will be based on their scientific track-record and a short research proposal that they will be asked to submit by 27 October 2016 (single-spaced, maximum 3,000 words). The proposal should consist of a PhD dissertation proposal connected to the sub-project on social protection policies for citizens abroad. It should include information on methodological strategies, possible theoretical developments, and relevant literature and data sources.

Final results will be notified before 15 November 2016. The successful nominee would be expected to start immediately.

For more information, please contact the Principal Investigator Jean-Michel Lafleur: Email: JM.Lafleur ;

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