Gepubliceerd op 08-08-2023

Research Assistant for Digitally Unveiling the History of Reparative Justice in the Words of a Forgotten Diary (6 months; 0.4 FTE) – Utrecht University

Do you speak German and do you want to research the history, politics, and law of reparations in Germany during the second half of the twentieth century?

Job Description

Utrecht University is seeking a highly motivated and diligent Research Assistant to join the “Wording Repair” project, led by Dr. Lorena De Vita.

This project aims to examine the history of reparations following mass human rights abuses. It will analyse the personal diaries of a German jurist who dedicated a significant portion of his professional career to seeking reparations for Holocaust survivors. The project will involve a relevant digital humanities component. Its overall aim is to provide valuable bottom-up insights that will contribute to the development of the emerging field of historical reparations studies.

The successful candidate will play a crucial role in contributing to the project’s objectives and gaining valuable insights into the complexities of reparations in a historical context. The key tasks will revolve around conducting research on the history, politics, and law of reparations in Germany during the second half of the twentieth century.

As a Research Assistant for the “Wording Repair” project, you will be responsible for:

  • conducting thorough research on the history, politics, and law of reparations in Germany during the second half of the twentieth century;
  • analysing and critically evaluating primary and secondary sources related to the topic;
  • assisting in data collection, organisation, and management for the project;
  • collaborating with the project team to identify relevant research areas and potential avenues for further investigation;
  • contributing to the development of academic publications and project reports;
  • participating in project meetings, discussions, and workshops.

Additionally, you will:

  • have the opportunity to work closely with an experienced team led by Dr. Lorena De Vita;
  • gain valuable research experience and enhance your academic credentials.
  • have access to a supportive and intellectually stimulating research environment;
  • have flexible working hours to accommodate other commitments.


As our ideal candidate, you have:

  • a Bachelor’s degree in History, Law, German Studies, or a related field. A Master’s degree will be an advantage;
  • strong research skills and a demonstrated ability to work with historical sources, including handwritten ones (experience with Sütterlin / Kurrentschrift is an advantage);
  • familiarity with German history and politics, particularly the second half of the twentieth century;
  • excellent command of German (B2 / C1);
  • proficiency in academic writing and the ability to present research findings coherently;
  • excellent organisational skills and attention to detail;
  • the ability to work both independently and collaboratively as part of a research team;
  • prior experience in academic research or relevant projects (desirable but not mandatory).

Conditions of Employment

We offer a temporary position (0.4 FTE) for 6 months in an international working environment. The gross salary – depending on previous qualifications and experience – ranges between €2,693 and €3,636 (scale 7 according to the Collective Labour Agreement Dutch Universities) per month for a full-time employment. Salaries are supplemented with a holiday bonus of 8% and a year-end bonus of 8.3% per year.

In addition, Utrecht University offers excellent secondary conditions, including an attractive retirement scheme, professional development, (partly paid) parental leave, sports and flexible employment conditions (multiple choice model). For more information, please visit working at Utrecht University.


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. Sharing science, shaping 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.

The faculty strives for diversity among its employees and students and is committed to creating a safe and inclusive environment for everyone, as can be read in Utrecht University’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion policy.

The core values of the Faculty for Humanities are professionalism, transparency, responsibility, connectedness and safety. These values apply to everyone and we uphold these values in our work and in our communication with each other and with others.

The management of the Faculty of Humanities is organised into several departments. Research Support is one of these departments and consists of three teams: the Research Support Team (grant office), Team Project Support and the Research Coordination Team. The staff members of the teams provide researchers and project leaders with support for project applications and ongoing projects. Furthermore, they have coordinating tasks in the field of research and postgraduate education within research institutes, national research schools and centers of expertise.

Additional Information

For more information about this position, please contact Dr. Lorena de Vita (Assistant Professor) at l.devita@uu.nl

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Het KNHG is de grootste organisatie van professionele historici in Nederland. Het biedt een platform aan de ruim 1100 leden en aan de historische gemeenschap als geheel. Word lid van het KNHG.
Het Huygens Instituut beoogt de Nederlandse geschiedenis en cultuur inclusiever maken. Het ontsluit historische bronnen en literaire teksten en ontwikkelt innovatieve methoden, tools en duurzame digitale infrastructuur.