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Postdoctoral Socio-Legal Research Scientist at IViR

The Institute for Information Law (IViR), the host institution of the Blockchain & Society Policy Research Lab, has a vacancy for a Postdoctoral …

4 maanden geleden


Nieuwe Achtergracht, Amsterdam, Noord-Holland
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
30 - 38 uur
€ 2709 - € 4274 per maand


The Institute for Information Law (IViR), the host institution of the Blockchain & Society Policy Research Lab, has a vacancy for a Postdoctoral Socio-Legal Research Scientist.

As a research scientist, you’ll be working on the social and institutional aspects of trust in and by technological systems. Multiple technologies emerged to produce trust (such as global reputation systems, (self-sovereign) identity systems), or minimize the need for trust (DLTs). Trust, as produced by technical systems has many possible sources: strong cryptography, censorship resistance through decentralization, good governance, or legal legibility, certainty and compliance. Some of these trust sources, like technology governance and regulation, can complement each other. Others, such as compliance and decentralization, seem to be in contradiction. As a social scientist, you will be working with legal scholars on answering the following two questions at the intersection of trust and technology:

  • How do (decentralized) technologies produce trust or minimize the need for trust?
  • What makes these systems trustworthy?

You will answer these questions by studying various aspects of trust and trustworthiness in technological contexts.
In particular you will:

  • conduct empirical research among technology developers on the trustworthiness of technology:
    • design and implement surveys, and conduct qualitative analysis on how technology developers see the trustworthiness of technology they build and operate, and how they implement and balance different sources of trust in technological systems (system design, governance, legal compliance, etc.);
  • conduct empirical research among technology users on the topic of trust:
    • design and implement surveys among users of blockchain based systems on the issue of trust and trustworthiness;
    • conduct a qualitative analysis of the discourses around trust and DLTs;
  • work on the problem of institutional embeddedness of decentralized technical systems:
    • conduct empirical research on how existing societal stakeholders (such as businesses, the media, various professional groups, regulators, policymakers) see the trustworthiness of decentralized technologies, and their ability to produce trust;
    • study the institutional change that may be necessary to better incorporate technical trust producers in systems of accountability and oversight;
  • work with legal scholars on new policy proposals aimed at building trust in decentralized technologies, and between users of such systems;
  • contribute to the development of research methodology and infrastructure;
  • organize workshops to discuss and disseminate the research findings.


Candidates are expected to meet the following requirements.

You have:

  • an interest in researching social diffusion/application/regulation of digital technologies;
  • a background in one or more of the following disciplines:
    • Sociology;
    • Economics;
    • Political Science
    • Computer Science,
    • Media studies

with special focus on sociology of organizations, sociology or economics of innovation, or science and technology studies;

  • demonstrated qualitative, and quantitative research skills, such as expertise in survey design and analysis, discourse analysis, or digital ethnography. Skills in computational methods is a plus;
  • experience in multidisciplinary research;
  • experience or interest in contributing to the relevant policy debates;
  • fluency in English and one other European language;
  • organizational and communicative skills;
  • willingness to attract external funding for research projects;
  • creative, critical, out-of-the-box thinking;
  • independence, reliability, autonomy;
  • willingness to work in Amsterdam.


We offer an employment contract of 2 years with the possibility of extension subject to additional funding. The gross full-time monthly salary will be in accordance with the salary scales for Assistant professors at Dutch universities, scale 10 Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities) ranging from €2,709 to €4,274 gross per month (full-time equivalent). Secondary benefits at Dutch universities are attractive and include 8% holiday pay and an 8,3% end-of-year Bonus

What else do we offer?

  • An internationally competitive salary, funds for conducting research, and funds for conference travel, and professional literature;
  • a 2-year contract with a possibility of extension (subject to additional funding);
  • an international, interdisciplinary, inspiring and challenging intellectual environment;
  • modern facilities;
  • an opportunity to participate in Dutch and International academic and policy networks, dialogues, cooperation;
  • an opportunity to shape national and European policy;
  • autonomy, independence, respect.

Additional information

For more information please contact: