Gepubliceerd op 24-04-2017

Vacature: PhD candidate ‘The formation of an Indonesian postcolonial academia’ (Deadline 18 May)

Research at the Faculty of Humanities is carried out by six research schools under the aegis of the Amsterdam Institute for Humanities Research. The Amsterdam School of Historical Studies (ASH), one of the six research schools, currently has a vacant PhD position as part of the NWO-funded project Decolonizing knowledge. Postcoloniality and the making of modern Indonesia’s knowledge culture, 1945 – 1970), led by Prof. Remco Raben.

Project description
This PhD project is part of the project Decolonizing knowledge. Postcoloniality and the making of modern Indonesia’s knowledge culture, 1945 – 1970). The aim of the project is to investigate the development of ‘knowledge cultures’ in Indonesia during the late-colonial and immediate post-colonial period (1945 -1970). In those decades, Indonesians faced the task to establish an infrastructure for education and the transfer of knowledge, and a formulation of the role and aims of knowledge in postcolonial society. The researchers of the three closely related research projects (the others looking at the role of publishing houses and the transfer of knowledge in large businesses) will investigate the legacies of colonialism, the influence of nationalist discourses and the concrete policies in establishing a knowledge culture.

This PhD project addresses both the policies of building an academic infrastructure for independent Indonesia, and the debates about the purpose and character of higher education and academic research in a postcolonial society. One topic for investigation concerns the academic and epistemological traditions inherited from colonial rule. A second issue is the formulation of the aims of tertiary education and its role in the new state and economy. A third subject will be the continuing reliance on Dutch and other ‘Western’ experts for education and scientific research in independent Indonesia.

The researcher will take three of the most prominent academic institutions as case studies: the Universitas Indonesia, the Institut Teknologi in Bandung, and Universitas Gajah Mada. The researcher will look at the development of curricula, the hiring of foreign expertise, and the connections with the political actors, publishers and business.

The researcher will peruse the extensive university archives in Indonesia, national archives in Jakarta and colonial archives in The Hague, and private papers of university administrators, ministers, and (foreign) staff members, as well as newspapers. Oral history will be an important part of the research.

The PhD researcher will make at least two research trips to Indonesia. She/he will closely cooperate with the other researchers and share data with them. She/he will also contribute to conferences, a training course to junior Indonesian historians, and to a web portrait gallery of Indonesian scholars and intellectuals.

Tasks of the PhD candidate will include:

  • completion and defence of a PhD thesis within four years;
  • participation in meetings of the project research group;
  • presentations of intermediate research results at workshops and conferences;
  • participation in the training program of the Graduate School / Research School;
  • contribute to teaching courses in history during the second and/or third year.

The successful applicant must have:

  • a completed (R)MA or MPhil degree in History, Indonesian Studies, or other relevant field in the Humanities, and have an interest in intellectual and social history and/or history of science;
  • a thorough command of English and good working knowledge in Dutch and Indonesian;
  • excellent research skills;
  • experience in archival research, and preferably also fieldwork, including oral history;
  • excellent academic writing and presentation skills.

Desirable qualities:

  • an interest in interdisciplinary approaches to historical research;
  • enthusiasm for collaborative work;
  • enthusiasm for communicating academic research to non-academic audiences.

Further information
For further information, please contact:

A full description of the research project ‘Decolonizing knowledge’ is available on request.

The PhD candidate will be appointed for 38 hours per week (1.0 FTE) for a period of 48 months at the Department of History, European Studies & Religious Studies of the Faculty of Humanities at the University of Amsterdam. Initially a contract will be given for 12 months, with an extension for the following 36 months on the basis of a positive evaluation. The intended starting date of the contract is 1 September 2017. The gross monthly salary (on full-time basis) will range from €2,191 during the first year to €2,801 during the fourth year, in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities

Job application
Applications should include the following information, in one PDF file (not zipped):

  • a letter of motivation;
  • a full academic CV;
  • a list of grades obtained for the Bachelor and Master (or equivalent) programmes;
  • the names and contact details of two referees who may be approached by the selection committee;
  • an example of a published article, paper or thesis that is representative for the candidate’s research and writing skills.

The selection committee may ask shortlisted candidates for further research materials.

Please submit your complete application no later than 18 May 2017 to solliciteren2017-FGW@uva.nl.

Only complete applications submitted as one PDF file to this email address will be considered.

Please state vacancy number 17-178 in the subject line of your application.

Interviews will take place in June 2017. For candidates living abroad interviews may be held via Skype. #LI-DNP

No agencies please

More information and application: www.uva.nl

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