Gepubliceerd op 30-01-2024

Postdoc Curating Dutch Petroleum Heritage and Energy Landscapes – Utrecht University

We are looking for a Postdoc for the Horizon Europe-funded project “Petroculture’s Intersections with The Cultural Heritage

We are looking for a postdoctoral researcher with a strong interest in the cultural interpretation of climate change and resource extraction.

What will you do?
The Horizon Europe-funded project “Petroculture’s Intersections with The Cultural Heritage sector in the context of green transitions” (PITCH) will create a deeper understanding of petroculture’s intersections with heritage practices and how this reflects social, economic, and political changes over time through our historical and analytical work in archives and collections and map the secondary literature on the intersections between petrocultures and heritage cultures. We will conduct pilot interventions at three different types of sites (museums, industrial heritage sites, and heritage landscapes) with four cultural heritage partners. This will help citizens understand how petrocultures have affected their lives and be confident about how they might envision those lives otherwise. PITCH is a collaboration between the University of Stavanger, University College London, University of Amsterdam, ISCTE – Instituto Universitário de Lisboa, and Utrecht University.

For Utrecht University’s contribution to the project, we will study how energy landscapes and other environments affected by extraction have been curated to date and will inventory lessons learned. Based on critical insights about current heritage practices we will assist EPIQ, a museum being established in the Groningen area, to develop community-based heritage interventions anchoring the dissonant history of the Groningen gas field into contemporary public space.

You will conduct a study of existing curation practices of landscapes affected by hydrocarbon extraction and transport. Subsequently, you will participate in the development of the heritage intervention. This will be in close collaboration with the community affected by the gas quakes in the villages around Loppersum. Finally, the project will reflect on the impact and heritage processes connected to the intervention.

As part of our team, your responsibilities will be to:

  • conduct literature research about the curation and (artistic) interpretation of landscapes of extraction;
  • critically assess industrial heritage interventions in the Netherlands and beyond;
  • engage in the development of a community-based heritage intervention in and around Loppersum (province of Groningen);
  • assist in the formulation and organisation of an artistic open call;
  • conduct participant observation and ethnographic research in the Groningen area about the memory practices around gas extraction;
  • contribute to the publications planned in the project (edited volume and special issue).

Job requirements

We are looking for a candidate who has:

  • a PhD in Heritage Studies, Anthropology, Cultural History or a related field;
  • a feeling with artistic methods and experience with ethnographic research;
  • an interest in the cultural interpretation of climate change and resource extraction;
  • fluency in Dutch language;
  • the skills to write up research work for publication and engage in conferences, seminars, and public dissemination.

Job conditions

  • a fulltime position for 24 months;
  • a working week of 38 hours and a gross monthly salary of €4,332 in the case of full-time employment (salary scale 11 under the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities (CAO NU);
  • 8% holiday pay and 8.3% year-end bonus;
  • A pension scheme, partially paid parental leave and flexible terms of employment based on the CAO NU.

In addition to the terms of employment laid down in the CAO NU, Utrecht University has a number of schemes and facilities of its own for employees. This includes schemes facilitating professional development, leave schemes and schemes for sports and cultural activities, as well as discounts on software and other IT products. We also offer access to additional employee benefits through our Terms of Employment Options Model. In this way, we encourage our employees to continue to invest in their growth. For more information, please visit Working at Utrecht University.


Universiteit Utrecht

A better future for everyone. This ambition motivates our scientists in executing their leading research and inspiring teaching. At Utrecht University, the various disciplines collaborate intensively towards major strategic themes. Our focus is on Dynamics of Youth, Institutions for Open Societies, Life Sciences and Pathways to Sustainability. Shaping science, sharing tomorrow.

The Faculty of Humanities has around 7,000 students and 1,100 staff members. It comprises four knowledge domains: Philosophy and Religious Studies, History and Art History, Media and Culture Studies, and Languages, Literature and Communication. With its research and education in these fields, the Faculty aims to contribute to a better understanding of the Netherlands and Europe in a rapidly changing social and cultural context. The enthusiastic and committed colleagues and the excellent amenities in the historical city centre of Utrecht, where the faculty is located, contribute to an inspiring working environment.

Additional information

For more information, please contact Gertjan Plets at g.f.j.plets@uu.nl.

Apply now!

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