Postdoctoral Position in European Integration and International Organization History

University of Copenhagen

Postdoctoral Position in European Integration and International Organization History, C. 1940s-1970s

The Saxo Institute, Faculty of Humanities at the University of Copenhagen is pleased to announce a call for applications for an 18-month postdoctoral position in European and international history. The position is available from 1 July 2023. The position is fully funded by the research project AUTONOMY & EXPERTISE in international organizations, 1940s-1970s, financed by the Independent Research Council Denmark (2022-2025).

AUTONOMY & EXPERTISE offers a comparative and connective investigation of how the administrations of The Organisation for European Economic Co-operation (OEEC)/The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), The European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) and the European Community (EC), and The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) accumulated expertise and autonomy to gain their (limited/specific) powers between the 1940s and the 1970s.

Further information about the project AUTONOMY & EXPERTISE in international organizations, 1940s-1970s can be seen here: Autonomy and Expertise in International Administrations, 1940s-1970s – University of Copenhagen (

The successful postdoctoral candidate will focus on the ECSC/EC and the OEEC/OECD while also contributing to the overall research aims of AUTONOMY & EXPERTISE.

Historical studies of IO administrations have conventionally either focused on organizational autonomy in a narrow sense or the development of transnational expertise, very often within a singular IO.

With an interdisciplinary approach this project seeks to:
(a) compare how and to what extent the three IO administrations gained autonomy from state power through an analysis of how they were created, organized and developed over time.

(b) map the expertise cultivated by the administrations via a prosopography (standardized biographies) that will locate nodes of influential higher officials and their network.

(c) identify how autonomy and expertise combined across IOs to create distinct bureaucratic roles enabling specific administrative powers, by creating a typology of international officials.

Accordingly, relevant themes for the postdoc include, but are not limited to, comparative and connective analyses of the ECSC/EC and OEEC/OECD’s constitutional set-up, administrative rules and regulations, recruitment patterns, leadership styles, hierarchies, roles and practices, networks and/or work on specific policy areas.

The successful candidate will work together with and under the supervision of the Principal Investigator (PI), based at the Saxo Institute, University of Copenhagen.


The PI and the selected postdoc of AUTONOMY & EXPERTISE closely collaborates in all stages of the research process and the selected candidate is expected to contribute to this research method.

Collaborative research elements include:

  • Collecting and sharing of historical evidence concerning the various research topics of AUTONOMY & EXPERTISE.
  • Close coordination of research trips to archives, libraries, workshops, and conferences.
  • Participating in fortnightly supervision and biannual career development meetings.
  • Contributing to the construction of prosopographical databases.
  • Publishing within the framework of AUTONOMY & EXPERTISE.
  • Active participation in a 1-month fellowship at the SIRICE research centre (Sorbonne, Paris).


To be eligible for the position, the candidate should demonstrate a thorough working knowledge of European Integration and/or International Organization History, including working experience with the Historical Archives of the European Union (Florence), the EU Commission Archives (Brussels) and/or the OEEC/OECD archives (Paris).
Candidates should have excellent reading skills in English and French.
Candidates with interests in interdisciplinarity, databases, prosopography and/or digital history are also welcomed.
In addition, the applicants must have research qualifications at least corresponding to those achieved through a successfully completed PhD within a relevant field.

Further information about qualification requirements for postdocs can be found in the Memorandum on Job Structure for Academic Staff at Danish Universities 2019 here: Bekendtgørelse om stillingsstruktur for videnskabeligt personale ved universiteter ( (in Danish) or Job_Structure_for_Academic_Staff_at_Universities  (in English).

For further information about the position, please contact PI of the research project, Associate professor Haakon A. Ikonomou, e-mail:


Submit the application online in Adobe PDF or Word format.

Please click on the “Apply now” icon at the bottom of the page.

The application must be in English and include the following enclosures:

  • Cover letter (maximum 1 page) specifying how the applicant’s qualifications and experiences match overall research aims of AUTONOMY & EXPERTISE.
  • Research proposal (maximum 3 pages) describing how the applicant would design a study of autonomy and expertise within the ECSC/EC & OEEC/OECD, including prosopographical elements and focussing on bureaucratic roles.
  • Curriculum vitae (with the applicant’s email and phone number).
  • Documentation of qualifications (examination certificates, PhD diploma, etc.).
  • Complete list of publications. The enclosed publications must be marked with *.
  • 1-3 enclosed publications*.

*Applicants may choose a maximum of three publications for assessment. Publication dates must be clearly marked on the publication list. The publications selected must be uploaded as attachments and listed from no. 1 to 3.

Should any of the submitted publications consist of work with named co-authors, or work that is otherwise the result of collective academic endeavours, the extent of the applicant’s contribution to the work must be clearly indicated. The Faculty may ask for a signed statement from the co-authors stipulating the extent and nature of each individual’s contribution.

Only material in Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, and English can be expected to be assessed.


After the application deadline, the Head of the Saxo Institute selects applicants for assessment on the advice of an appointment committee.  All applicants are notified whether their application has been accepted for assessment. The Dean subsequently appoints an expert assessment committee tasked with carrying out an assessment of the selected applicants for the specific post. Selected applicants are notified of the composition of the committee. Applicants are ultimately offered the opportunity of commenting on the part of the assessment relating to themselves before the appointment is finalized.

Further information about the application procedure is available from HR, e-mail:, please refer to ID number 211-1257/22-2I


Terms of appointment and salary will be in accordance with an agreement between the Ministry of Finance and The Danish Confederation of Professional Associations (AC). The salary range starts at DKK 35,700 (EUR 4,800) per month + a 17,1 % contribution to the pension scheme. It is possible to negotiate salary supplements on an annual basis.

The Danish Ministry of Finance and the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations (AC) have further agreed on a protocol that makes it possible for international researchers employed by the University to achieve a pension exemption, whereby the pension contribution will be paid out as salary. For more information about the different pension schemes, please see:

A special tax scheme is offered to researchers recruited abroad Tax – University of Copenhagen (

If you consider applying from abroad, you may find useful information on working in Denmark and at UCPH here:, and

UCPH wishes to encourage everyone interested in this post to apply, regardless of personal background.

The closing date for applications is 15 FEBRUARY 2023 23:59 CET.

Applications or supplementary material received thereafter will not be considered.

Application deadline: 15 February 2023

Employment start: 1 July 2023

Department/Location: Saxo Institute, University of Copenhagen, Karen Blixen Plads 8, 2300 Copenhagen, DK-Denmark


Part of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), and among Europe’s top-ranking universities, the University of Copenhagen promotes research and teaching of the highest international standard. Rich in tradition and modern in outlook, the University gives students and staff the opportunity to cultivate their talent in an ambitious and informal environment. An effective organisation – with good working conditions and a collaborative work culture – creates the ideal framework for a successful academic career.


Application deadline: 15-02-2023
Employment start: 01-07-2023
Department/Location: Saxo-Instituttet