PhD candidate on regional and neighbourhood dynamics in view of life course and class

Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences – Department of Geography, Planning and International Development Studies

Publication date
13 July 2017
Level of education
Master's degree
Salary indication
€2,222 to €2,840 gross per month
Closing date
4 September 2017
38 hours per week
Vacancy number

The Department of Geography, Planning and International Development Studies is one of the six Departments in the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG). Research and education are carried out by special institutes. The Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research (AISSR) is responsible for research in the social sciences. The College of Social Sciences (CSS) and the Graduate School of Social Sciences (GSSS) are responsible for undergraduate and graduate teaching programmes in the social sciences.

Research and teaching in the Department of Geography, Planning and International Development Studies is organized in four thematic programme groups: Governance and Inclusive Development (GID), Geographies of Globalizations (GOG), Urban Geographies (UG) and Urban Planning (UP).

This vacancy belongs to the programme group Urban Geographies.

Job description

The PhD project will focus on changes and continuities in regional and neighbourhood dynamics in view of life course and class in the 21st century. These dynamics have long been characterized by life cycle dynamics: young people would move to city centres for work or education and eventually, as life and employment trajectories are maturing, would suburbanize. While there were always exceptions (e.g. migrant communities, fractions of the middle class, suburban-oriented young people), such a reading of regional dynamics is increasingly contested by new trends and structural transformations. These trends are related to demographic, economic and institutional changes. First, while already evident in the 20th century, Western European cities continue to experience the growing and changed effects of the second demographic transition: the postponement of household formation, marriage, and children; an ageing population, new forms of partnership and household arrangements. This transition has led to a diversification in demand for housing and living environments. Second, we are seeing lasting changes in economic frameworks. The position of cities as centres of production, consumption and investment seems to have been strengthened; leading to increasing demand pressure. For those reasons, talented migrants and young people have been increasingly flocking to the city. Yet, pressure on housing markets, at least in some cities, has made it hard for newcomers and existing populations to gain access to suitable housing. Ongoing gentrification may have knock-on effects on household dynamics. Third, residential dynamics are structured by institutional frameworks; notably housing market regulation (including social housing), urban (re)development and transportation networks. The recent decade has seen a tendency towards deregulation in planning and privatization of housing; developments which have been shown to be detrimental to socio-spatial inequality, yet it is largely unclear how they affect the spatial dimensions of life course.

The candidate will be the primary researcher in a research project on the regional dynamics of life course. As primary researcher, the candidate will perform and report on socio-spatial analyses of Dutch urban regions, based on large-N register datasets of Statistics Netherlands. Furthermore, she or he will be embedded in a small research team and will have to interact with a committee of regional stakeholders. For this reason, Dutch proficiency is an advantage, but not a necessity. The project will precede the PhD and its analyses will form the groundwork for the thesis, set to be completed in 2021.


The candidate has:

  • a completed Master in Human Geography, Urban Studies, Demography or related Social Sciences;
  • expertise and experience in social and spatial analysis techniques;
  • experience with handling large-N datasets;
  • excellent writing and verbal skills in English, proficiency in Dutch is a plus.

Further information

For more information about this position, please contact:


The appointment is initially for a period of one year; contingent on satisfactory performance it will thereafter be extended by a maximum of three years leading to the completion of a PhD thesis. The gross monthly full-time salary is €2,222 during the first year, rising to €2,840 during the final year. This is in conformity with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universitie. Secondary benefits at Dutch universities are attractive and include 8% holiday pay and an 8.3% end of year bonus.

Job application

Applications by email only. These should include a motivation letter and full CV.

Both documents should be sent as a single pdf email attachment to Mrs. B. A. Lawa. Please mention ‘PhD candidate on: regional and neighbourhood dynamics in view of life course and class’ and  reference number 17-376 in the subject line. The deadline for applications is 4 September.

No agencies please

Published by  University of Amsterdam