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Ph.D. candidate REDRESS project

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General information


The Faculty of Behavioural, Management and Social sciences (BMS) aims to play a pivotal role in understanding, co-engineering and evaluating innovation in society. Innovation is driven by advances in technology. By means of 'social engineering', we are here to integrate these advances in society. As a people-first tech university, we align these advances with the needs and behaviour of humans. We ensure proper public and private management as well as robust, inclusive and fair organisational structures. The faculty of BMS does this by developing, transferring and applying high-quality knowledge of Psychology, Business Administration, Public Administration, Communication Science, Philosophy, Educational Science, and Health Sciences. Our research and education in these disciplines is challenge-based. The BMS research programmes are directly linked to our research institutes: Mesa+ Institute for Nanotechnology, the TechMed Centre and the Digital Society Institute.
As an employer, the BMS Faculty offers jobs that matter. We equip you as a staff member to shape new opportunities both for yourself and for our society. With our Faculty, you will be part of a leading tech university that is changing our world for the better. We offer an open, inclusive and entrepreneurial climate, in which we encourage you to make healthy choices, for example, with our flexible, customizable conditions.



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Academic staff - PhD

Job title

Ph.D. candidate REDRESS project

Minimum salary


Maximum salary


Job description

The section Public Administration of the University of Twente is currently seeking a Ph.D. candidate in Public Governance.

The Challenge

We are looking for a Ph.D. candidate who is keen to study democratic innovation and citizen participation in the Netherlands, including the use of digital technologies. The position is part of a collaboration between four universities and several other organisations, which have received funding for the REDRESS project (see below) from the Dutch Research Council (NWO) as part of the National Research Agenda´s route ´Towards Resilient Societies´.

The Ph.D. candidate that we search for will be working on work package 5, “The effects of participation in hybrid democratic innovations: real-life tests”. Whereas other Ph.D. candidates in the consortium focus more strongly on how instruments of plebiscitary and deliberative democracy can be blended to supplement representative democracy or on experimental tests of their effects, your Ph.D. project focuses on how they affect participating citizens in real-life cases. More specifically, the project aims to analyse their effects on trust and perceived responsiveness of the political system and its actors. Special attention will be devoted to the way that digital technologies can be used in such settings and how they influence the process and outcomes. You will combine quantitative methods (survey questionnaires) and qualitative methods (interviews, focus groups). To benefit from their expertise with both, you will be positioned part-time at SCP. In the section Public Administration at the University of Twente, you will be supervised by prof. dr. Marcel Boogers (promotor) and dr. Martin Rosema (work package leader, daily supervisor).

Your main tasks are:

  • Carrying out the research as outlined in the REDRESS grant proposal, work package 5, in the section Public Administration at the University of Twente;
  • Writing research papers to be published in international academic journals and integrated in a Ph.D. thesis; you will present the drafts at national and international conferences;
  • Developing your academic capabilities via courses of the Twente Graduate School and/or Netherlands Institute of Government (NIG);
  • Being an active member of the REDRESS consortium and the interdisciplinary academic community in Twente.


  • You have obtained (or will obtain before 31 August 2021) a Master’s degree in a relevant field of the social sciences, such as Public Administration or Political Science;
  • You have a clear interest in research on democratic innovation and citizen participation;
  • You have a clear interest in research on the use of digital technologies in democratic processes;
  • You have demonstrated academic excellence, visible in grade transcripts and CV;
  • You have good quantitative and qualitative research skills;
  • You have good social and communication skills;
  • You have excellent English language skills, especially in academic writing;
  • You are able to communicate in Dutch with consortium partners;
  • You enjoy working independently, but also working in teams;
  • You are keen to work in an interdisciplinary and technology-oriented academic environment.

We offer

You are appointed as Ph.D. candidate (1,0 fte) for a period of four years, with a qualifier after one year. Initial gross salary is € 2.395,- per month in the first year going up to € 3.061,- in the fourth year. Preferred starting date is 1 September 2021. The University of Twente offers excellent facilities for professional and personal development, an international and dynamic atmosphere, a green and lively campus, holiday allowance (8%), end-of-year bonus (8.3%), a solid pension scheme and diverse extra benefits.

 We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We oppose discrimination on the basis of race, religion, colour, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, disability status, or any other kind.

Information and application

Please submit your application no later than 30 May 2021 using the “Apply now” button on the university´s vacancy website. The cover letter that explains your motivation and why you qualify for the position, should be no more than 1.5 pages A4. With this, please provide a full Curriculum Vitae, grade transcripts for your university courses (Bachelor and Master), one single-authored research paper (e.g., thesis or course paper), and names and contact information (e-mail, phone number) of two references. 

We anticipate interviewing short-listed candidates on 7 June 2021 in Dutch via a video conference.

For additional information about this position, or to obtain the grant proposal of the REDRESS consortium with a description of work package 5 included, please contact dr. Martin Rosema (email: m.rosema@utwente.nl; phone 053-489 3897/3280).

About the department

REDRESS project: Revitalized Democracy for Resilient Societies

The Dutch Research Council (NWO), together with co-funding partners, awarded € 2 million to the REDRESS (Revitalized Democracy for Resilient Societies) consortium bid to the Dutch National Research Agenda´s (NWA) route ´Toward Resilient Societies´. The REDRESS project investigates how hybrid democratic innovations can strengthen representative democracy. Hybrid democratic innovations combine instruments of plebiscitary democracy (e.g. referendums) with deliberative democracy (e.g. citizen assemblies). The project combines comparative research with learning from experiences with democratic innovations in the Netherlands. The consortium comprises several governmental and societal organisations (Ministerie van BZK, Ministerie van IenW, ProDemos, VNG, Rathenau Instituut, The Broker, LSA Bewoners, WRR) and five research institutions: Radboud University Nijmegen, Sociaal en Cultureel Planbureau (SCP), Tilburg University (coordinator; principal investigator: prof. dr. Frank Hendriks), Utrecht University, and University of Twente. They will jointly recruit four Ph.D. candidates and two postdoctoral researchers.

At the University of Twente, the research will be carried out in the Public Administration section (https://www.utwente.nl/en/bms/pa/).

Position localisation

Job location

Nederland, Enschede, Drienerlolaan 5, 7522 NB


Drienerlolaan 5 7522 NB Enschede

Candidate criteria

Minimum level of education required

4. Master