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  3. Postdoctoral researcher in the 'Effects of Emotional Political Communication'

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Postdoctoral researcher in the 'Effects of Emotional Political Communication'

The Department of Political Sciences has a vacancy for a Postdoctoral researcher in the 'Effects of Emotional Political Communication'. The researcher will be …

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Spui, Amsterdam, Noord-Holland
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
38 uur
€ 3475 - € 4757 per maand


The Department of Political Sciences has a vacancy for a Postdoctoral researcher in the 'Effects of Emotional Political Communication'.

The researcher will be working for POLEMIC, a project that analyses the causes and consequences of emotional political communication. The project is highly interdisciplinary combining automated text analyses of politician speeches with individual responses to communication, both at the attitudinal and physiological level. You will be working in a team of 5 people: two PhD candidates (to be hired), Gijs Schumacher (Principal Investigator) and Bert Bakker. Formally, you will work at the Department of Political Science.

The Postdoctoral researcher will analyse the attitudinal and physiological responses (heartbeat, skin conductance and facial electromyography) of individuals to emotional appeals by politicians. Together with a PhD candidate the postdoctoral researcher will need to conduct a survey experiment and a lab experiment in different countries. Broadly speaking, the project seeks to explain who responds (emotionally) to what, and what the consequences are for political attitudes and political behaviour. In addition to that there is also ample space in the project for developing and implementing one’s own ideas, as long as these match with the broader topic of emotions in politics.

  • Conduct survey experiments and lab experiments, including physiological measurement (skin conductance, heartbeat, EMG);
  • process and analyse survey data, including physiological data;
  • write research articles;
  • work in a highly interdisciplinary team;
  • supervise PhD candidates;
  • further develop the project using other data/methods or asking different questions;
  • spend one semester abroad to do a lab study in the United States (specifically Temple University in Philadelphia in the Behavioral Foundations Lab led by Prof. Kevin Arceneaux).

Teaching is optional, but encouraged.


  • PhD degree (or close to obtaining one) in Political Science, Communication Science or Psychology (candidates with a PhD degree in other disciplines may apply, but should motivate why their experience suffices for this project);
  • plenty of experience with conducting experiments, preferably also experiments collecting physiological data;
  • plenty of experience with quantitative methodology, preferably also with analysing physiological data;
  • programming skills in R, Python or another programming language;
  • an interest in interdisciplinary work.


For this position the University Job Classification System ’Researcher-3/ Onderzoeker-3’ applies.
The appointment will be on a temporary basis for the duration of 2 years. The position is full-time (38 hours per week).
The position will start on 1 October 2018. A later date is negotiable.
The gross monthly salary for this position will be €3,475 to €4,757 gross per month; based on a full-time position of 38 hours per week, plus 8% holiday allowance and 8,3% end-of- year allowance. The Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities is applicable.

Additional information

For more information please contact:

For a project description, please check:

Please send your application with vacancy number 18-037 as subject and as an attachment (in one single pdf-file) to:

Submit a CV, contact information for 3 references for your academic qualifications, a writing sample (published paper or unpublished, job-market paper), a motivation letter (max 1 page) and a one-page research proposal that fits in the specific work packages the candidate will be involved in. Please highlight what your own contribution can be in terms of conceptual development, measurement of concepts, type of analysis, or additional research questions.

A first selection round will be held early May. Interviews will be held late May, early June. After the interview round a decision will be made.

The deadline for the application is 30 April 2018.
Please note that incomplete applications will not be considered.


With over 5,000 employees, 30,000 students and a budget of more than 600 million euros, the University of Amsterdam (UvA) is an intellectual hub within the Netherlands. Teaching and research at the UvA are conducted within seven faculties: Humanities, Social and Behavioural Sciences, Economics and Business, Law, Science, Medicine and Dentistry. Housed on four city campuses in or near the heart of Amsterdam, where disciplines come together and interact, the faculties have close links with thousands of researchers and hundreds of institutions at home and abroad.

The UvA’s students and employees are independent thinkers, competent rebels who dare to question dogmas and aren’t satisfied with easy answers and standard solutions. To work at the UvA is to work in an independent, creative, innovative and international climate characterised by an open atmosphere and a genuine engagement with the city of Amsterdam and society.

Department of Political Science

The Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG) of the University of Amsterdam (UvA) is the largest educational and research institution in the social sciences in the Netherlands, and one of the highest-ranked such institutions in Europe. The Faculty serves 7,500 students in numerous Bachelor’s and Master’s programmes in Political Science, Sociology, Anthropology, Communication Science, Psychology, Social Geography, Planning and International Development Studies, and Educational Sciences. The academic staff is employed in education as well as research. There are over 1,100 employees at the Faculty, which resides in a number of buildings in the centre of Amsterdam.

The Department of Political Sciences is one of the departments of the FMG. The College of Social Sciences (CSW) and the Graduate School of Social Sciences (GSSS) are responsible for the under-graduate and graduate teaching programmes in Political Science. The research within the Department is conducted in research programmes of the Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR). The AISSR unites the social science research of the UvA, and is one of the largest research institutes in Europe.