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PhD position in Disinformation, Journalism, Communication Science – UvA, Netherlands

The Netherlands, University of Amsterdam (UvA)

The Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR) is the research institute at the Communication Science department at the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences. We seek a PhD candidate for the “Disinformation and Journalism: An Informational and Discursive Crisis” project. This PhD track is part of the Political Communication & Journalism programme group.

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General Info

Position: PhD position
No. of Positions: 1
Research Field: , ,
Deadline to Apply: Expired
Joining Date: Apr 01, 2022
Contract Period: 1 Year
Salary: 2434 to 3111 Euro/Month

Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences
Amsterdam School of Communication Research (ASCoR)
University of Amsterdam (UvA)

Amsterdam , ,

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Qualification Details

  • A Master’s degree in Journalism Studies, Communication Science, or related disciplines. Candidates currently finalizing their Masters are also invited to apply, with the condition that the diploma must be completed by the time the project starts;
  • An interest in political communication and journalism;
  • EITHER a qualitative empirical research focus and knowledge of, or the willingness to learn, specific quantitative skills, including (but not limited to) experiments;
  • OR a quantitative empirical research focus and knowledge of, or the willingness to learn, specific qualitative research skills, including (but not limited to) expert interviews and qualitative content analysis;
  • Proven proficiency in statistical software such as Atlas.ti, NVivo or MAXQDA, and SPSS, Stata or R;
  • A strong commitment to open science principles;
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English;
  • Independent thinking and critical analytical skills;
  • A scientific mindset, inquisitive personality, and the capacity of working independently;
  • Strong interpersonal and project management skills;
  • The willingness to travel internationally to scientific conferences and workshops, and engage with the scientific community at large;
  • The willingness to move to Amsterdam or a location within daily commuting distance for the duration of the contract.


  • Previous experience with research on disinformation and journalism;
  • Experience as a research assistant.

Responsibilities/Job Description

The doctoral project “Disinformation and Journalism: An Informational and Discursive Crisis” aims at understanding how accusations of disinformation affect citizens, politicians and journalism. It uses both qualitative and quantitative methods to understand how journalists perceive disinformation, how disinformation as a label and genre is present in digital information settings, and how such discourses and genres affect citizens’ perceptions. In the first sub-project (SP1), the project qualitatively maps how political disinformation exists as both an information crisis and a delegitimizing label. SP2 will rely on in-depth interviews with journalists to assess how they perceive misinformation as a threat to the informational quality of journalism and as a threat to their legitimacy – what strategies do they employ to seek truthfulness in an era of factual relativism whilst fighting off increasingly hostile attacks on their own legitimacy? Finally, SP3 will use an experiment to explore the effects of disinformation’s ‘two faces’ and citizens’ resilience to both dimensions of the disinformation order.

You will take the leading role on three studies, under the supervision of Dr Katjana Gattermann, Dr Michael Hameleers and Dr Andreas Schuck. Responsibilities include (but are not limited to):

  • Planning and conducting three studies as outlined in the full project proposal
  • Data analysis and writing scientific articles as part of the doctoral dissertation
  • Conference presentations
  • Taking active part in the research environment at ASCoR, including research seminars and the PhD club, among others
  • It is also expected that you acquire detailed knowledge of the literature on disinformation, political journalism and media effects

Submission of a PhD dissertation within the period of appointment is expected.

How to Apply?

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Documents Required

Applications in .pdf should include:

  • a curriculum vitae;
  • a letter of motivation (max. 2 pages) that outlines your preparation and motivation to pursue this PhD project; Please be as specific as possible in describing how you meet the selection criteria. If you do not meet all of the criteria yet, please explain how you will acquire the required skills;
  • (unofficial) undergraduate and graduate transcripts;
  • the contact details of two academic referees who know you well.

Please do NOT include any other materials at this stage. No other materials will be reviewed by the committee. Additional materials such as recommendation letters, writing samples, and/or a short draft PhD proposal will be requested only for short-listed candidates. Do not send these materials with the initial application. The committee expects interviews to take place (via zoom or in person) in January 2022.

About the Project/Department

A challenging work environment with a variety of duties and ample scope for individual initiative and development within an inspiring organization. The social and behavioral sciences play a leading role in addressing the major societal challenges faced by the world, the Netherlands and Amsterdam, now and in the future.

To work at the University of Amsterdam is to work in a discerning, independent, creative, innovative and international climate characterized by an open atmosphere and a genuine engagement with the city of Amsterdam and society. Here you can read more about working at the University of Amsterdam.

About the Employer:

Note or Other details

  • The opportunity to conduct cutting-edge research in an inspiring academic and international working environment in the heart of Amsterdam
  • An enthusiastic and warm team that is open to new colleagues
  • A position in which initiative and input are highly valued
  • Financial support to attend conferences and for occasional research assistance

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Contact details

Do you have any questions or do you require additional information? Please contact:

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