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PhD Coping with Drought

You will work as a PhDstudent in the  research project ‘Coping with drought. An environmental history of drinking water and climate adaptation in the Netherlands’, financed by  NWO. You will cooperate with the project leader Prof. dr. Petra J.E.M. van Dam, the postdocs and other other project members. Please apply at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.

8 maanden geleden


De Boelelaan, Amsterdam, Noord-Holland
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
32 - 40 uur
€ 2325 - € 2972 per maand


This PhD-project focuses on the history of drinking water in early modern cities in the eastern Netherlands, 1600-1850. Of specific interest are the well-communities in the IJssel cities. The main research questions you will start from are: What practices and norms and values contributed to the technological, social-economic, political and cultural adaptability of both water providers and users to multi-year, seasonal and daily irregularities in water supplies as caused by the weather? What norms and values existed concerning the (cultural) perceptions of water quality and how did that influence usage patterns of drinking water and hygienic practices? You will study a variety of sources, including city administration documents.

Your duties

  • developing and executing a PhD-project resulting in a dissertation and journal articles
  • attending relevant courses at a research school
  • participating in the teaching and research activities of the Chair Group of Water and Environmental history and the Environmental Humanities Center


  • a completed Research Master in History or Master in History
  • strong academic record and experience with research in early-modern archives
  • excellent skills in written and spoken Dutch and English
  • affinity with the topic and with scholarly research


A challenging position in a socially involved organization. The salary will be in accordance with university regulations for academic personnel and amounts €2,325 (PhD) per month during the first year and increases to €2,972 (PhD) per month during the fourth year, based on a full-time employment. The job profil is based on the university job ranking system and is vacant for at least 0.8 FTE. The appointment will initially be for 1 year. After a satisfactory evaluation of the initial appointment, the contract will be extended for a duration of 3-4 years.The position includes ample funding for research and travel.

Additionally, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam offers excellent fringe benefits and various schemes and regulations to promote a good work/life balance, such as:
  • a maximum of 41 days of annual leave based on full-time employment
  • 8% holiday allowance and 8.3% end-of-year bonus
  • contribution to commuting expenses
  • a wide range of sports facilities which staff may use at a modest charge

Additional information

Are you interested in this position? Please apply via the application button and upload your curriculum vitae and cover letter until 17 October 2019. Before applying please ask for the entire project description: p.j.e.m.van.dam@vu.nl. The job interviews are planned for the period 1-15 November.

Applications received by e-mail will not be processed.

Vacancy questions
If you have any questions regarding this vacancy, you may contact:

Name: Prof. dr. P.J.E.M. van Dam
Position: Principal Investigator
E-mail: p.j.e.m.van.dam@vu.nl
Telephone: +31 (0)20 598 6434

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