Tilburg law and Economics Center (TILEC) is looking for a PhD researcher interested to examine the legal or organizational impediments for the implementation of data driven innovations in the infrastructure sectors. The LONGA VIA project is led by Prof. Saskia Lavrijssen and financed by the Dutch Research Council NWO. The project will be performed in cooperation with large infrastructure organizations, including Alliander, Vitens, Port of Rotterdam, Prorail and Rijkswaterstaat.
Managers of infrastructures for energy, transport and water are continuously looking for smarter ways to operate and maintain their infrastructures, in order to provide reliable, safe, affordable and sustainable services to the general public. At the same time, existing infrastructures are aging, and facing increased wear and tear as a result of higher utilization. Data-driven innovation in the operation and maintenance of, and the sharing of data across critical infrastructures can aid the managers of these infrastructures in safeguarding these public interests, yet are insufficiently utilized. There is little cross-sectoral cooperation between infrastructure managers for the purpose of creating data sharing platforms and common security and crisis procedures. Neither are data-driven innovations in infrastructure operation and maintenance implemented at a large scale.
The research project investigates which legal and organizational factors impede the implementation of data-driven innovation in infrastructure sectors and how these impediments can be overcome. It combines a legal-empirical perspective with an organizational-economic perspective on infrastructure operation and maintenance, a combination which is relevant yet hardly pursued. The legal-empirical perspective is used to identify legal and regulatory barriers, and aims to identify effective adaptations to existing rules and regulations to facilitate such innovations. The organizational/ economic perspective helps to assess the main hurdles towards the adoption of data-driven innovation, and seeks to identify effective business models. In combination, these two perspectives help mitigate challenges at the organizational level (i.e., at infrastructure managers and between them and their partners) as well as at the sectoral level (i.e., within and across infrastructures).
The project into legal impediments will be executed by a PhD with a legal and/or law and economics background and will be supervised by prof. S. Lavrijssen and prof. M. Groenleer.
TILEC is an interdisciplinary center producing cutting-edge research of global repute in the broader fields of competition, regulation and innovation. Tilburg University is rated among the top Dutch employers and has excellent terms of employment. The appointment will be for the total of 48 months. The selected candidate will initially be appointed for 16 months, with an extension for the following 32 months on the basis of a positive evaluation. The evaluation will take place after 12 months.
The selected candidate will be ranked in the Dutch university employment system (UFO). The starting gross salary is € 2.222,- per month (for a full-time appointment) based on the PhD salary scale of the Collective Labour Agreement (CAO) Dutch Universities. Researchers from outside the Netherlands may qualify for a tax-free allowance equal to 30% of their taxable salary. The university will apply for such an allowance on their behalf. The university offers very good fringe benefits (it is one of the best non-profit employers in the Netherlands), such as an options model for terms and conditions of employment and excellent reimbursement of moving expenses.
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