PhD Position in Social Science

University of Antwerp

Department: Department of Sociology
Regime Full-time

Let’s shape the future - University of Antwerp

The University of Antwerp is a dynamic, forward-thinking university. We offer an innovative academic education to more than 20000 students, conduct pioneering scientific research and play an important service-providing role in society. We are one of the largest, most international and most innovative employers in the region. With more than 6000 employees from 100 different countries, we are helping to build tomorrow's world every day. Through top scientific research, we push back boundaries and set a course for the future – a future that you can help to shape. 

The research group CRESC - Faculty of Social Sciences offers a full time doctoral scholarship to perform research on (area-specific) social impact of the use of geological resources.


  • You prepare a PhD thesis on the topic of the social impact with regard to the use of geological resources. This PhD research is part of a larger FWO-SBO research project DIAMONDS. Here innovative hydrogeological methods will be integrated with economic, environmental, and social impact assessments to determine threshold values for a sustainable management of geological resources in Belgium and beyond. Within this interdisciplinary setting, this PhD research focusses in an integrated way on the subsurface and the surface.
  • You develop an appropriate methodology for assessing societal impact and defining the social carrying capacity for subsurface plans and projects, meeting the requirements of social and environmental justice.
  • You publish scientific articles related to the research project.
  • You carry out a limited number of research support tasks.


  • You hold a Master degree in social sciences, or an interdisciplinary master in environmental science, with a sufficient affiliation with social sciences, or you will have obtained this degree by the time you start work.
  • You can demonstrate excellent study results.
  • Your research qualities are in line with the faculty and university research policies.
  • You act with attention to quality, integrity, creativity and cooperation.
  • You have strong analytical skills and are versed in qualitative and quantitative social science research methods.
  • You are interested in the governance of environmental and technology issues and in the interplay between science, government, market and civil society/citizens in the development and implementation of new technologies.
  • You have a passion for sustainability and would like to contribute to the fight against social and environmental inequality.
  • You show a strong affinity for interdisciplinary research and are able to cooperate with researchers from various scientific disciplines.
  • You look forward to doing fieldwork and see collaborating with actors in the field as an exciting challenge.
  • You are communicative, fluent in Dutch and English and have excellent academic writing skills in both languages.
  • Possession of a driving licence B is considered a bonus.

What we offer

  • We offer a doctoral scholarship for a period of two years. Following a positive evaluation, the scholarship can be renewed once for another two-year period.
  • The planned start date is 1 October 2023 or as soon as possible after that date.
  • Your monthly scholarship amount is calculated according to the scholarship amounts for doctoral scholarship holders on the pay scales for Contract Research Staff (Dutch: Bijzonder Academisch Personeel, BAP).
  • You will receive ecocheques, internet-connectivity allowance and a bicycle allowance or a full reimbursement of public transport costs for commuting.
  • You will do most of your work at city campus of the university of Antwerp, in a dynamic and stimulating working environment.
  • Find out more about working at the University of Antwerp.

Want to apply?

  • You can apply for this vacancy through the University of Antwerp’s online job application platform up to and including 31 August 2023 (by midnight CET). Click on the 'Apply' button, complete the online application form and be sure to include the following attachments: a motivation letter, your academic CV, and a short essay (max. 2500 words) with the following title "Towards a sustainable use of the subsurface - a social sciences perspective", from which you will distil some research questions that you find pertinent.
  • The selection committee will review all of the applications as soon as possible after the application deadline. As soon as a decision has been made, we will inform you about the next steps in the selection procedure. Please make a note of the following date: 12 September 2023 (interview).
  • If you have any questions about the online application form, please check the frequently asked questions or send an email to If you have any questions about the job itself, please contact anne.bergmans@uantwerpen or

The University of Antwerp received the European Commission’s HR Excellence in Research Award for its HR policy. We are a sustainable, family-friendly organisation which invests in its employees’ growth. We encourage diversity and attach great importance to an inclusive working environment and equal opportunities, regardless of gender identity, disability, race, ethnicity, religion or belief, sexual orientation or age. We encourage people from diverse backgrounds and with diverse characteristics to apply.a