Postdoc à l’Université d’Amsterdam

Postdoctoral researcher in Asian Cultural Studies

Faculty of Humanities – Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis

The Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA) of the Faculty of Humanities is looking for one Postdoctoral researcher in the fields of Media Studies, Cultural Studies and/or Area Studies. The postdoc will be part of the European Research Council (ERC) funded project ‘From Made in China to Created in China – A Comparative Study of Creative Practice and Production in Contemporary China (ChinaCreative)’. She/he will work on a project on creative clusters in Shenzhen.

ASCA is one of the six research schools of the Amsterdam Institute for Humanities Research (AIHR). ASCA is home to more than 110 scholars and 120 PhD candidates, and is a world-leading international research school in Cultural Analysis. ASCA members share a commitment to working in an interdisciplinary framework and to maintaining a close connection with contemporary cultural and political debates.

Project description

ChinaCreative explores the histories, meanings and implications of creativity in the context of China. With its emergence as a global power, China aspires to move from a ‘made in China’ to a ‘created in China’ country. Creativity and culture have become a crucial source for innovation and financial growth, but are also mobilised to promote a new and open China to both the citizenry and the outside world. They are part of what is termed China’s ‘soft power.’ This project aims to analyse claims of creativity in different cultural practices, and to analyse how emerging creativities in China are part of tactics of governmentality and disable or enable possibilities of criticality. Using a comparative, multi-disciplinary, multi-method and multi-sited research design, the postdoc project focuses on creative clusters in Shenzhen. Four other PhD projects analyse (PhD 1) contemporary art, (PhD 2) calligraphy, (PhD 3) independent documentary cinema (all in Beijing), and (PhD 4) Hunan Satellite Television (in Changsha). Methods involve a combination of visual and aesthetic analysis, ethnography, mobile methods and cultural mapping. The candidate will be based in Amsterdam and will conduct at least six months of fieldwork in China.


  • A PhD degree in the Humanities or Social Sciences;
  • excellent written and spoken English (IELTS certificate of qualification 7.0 or higher) and proficiency in Mandarin;
  • demonstrable research experience in China;
  • outstanding research qualities manifested in a high-quality PhD dissertation and publications;
  • ability and willingness to carry out empirical research and spend extended periods both in China and in The Netherlands;
  • keen interest in interdisciplinary research methods and approaches;
  • ability and willingness to work in a team.

Further information

For more information on the research project ChinaCreative and the selection procedure, please contact:


The selected Postdoc will be appointed full-time (38 hours per week) for a period of 2.5 years at the at the Department of Media Studies of the Faculty of Humanities at the University of Amsterdam. The research will be carried out under the aegis of ASCA. The appointment is initially for a period of one year; contingent on satisfactory performance it will be extended by a maximum of 1.5 years, leading to the completion of a monograph and at least two articles. The gross monthly salary (on a full-time basis) will range from €3,168 during the first year to €3,527 during the third year, in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities).

Job application

Applications should include, in a single PDF file:

  • a detailed letter of intent stating your motivation for this position;
  • a full academic CV including a list of publications;
  • a preliminary proposal including research questions, theoretical approaches, objects of analysis, methodologies, most important literature and time planning (maximum 2,000 words);
  • a copy of your PhD dissertation or another relevant writing sample;
  • for non-native English speakers: IELTS certificate or equivalent;
  • two letters of recommendation.

Applicants must have completed their PhD by December 2016.

Shortlisted candidates will be asked to write a short statement presenting their ideas for the project.

Please submit your application to no later than 31 August 2016.

Only complete applications submitted to this email address will be considered.

Please state vacancy number 16-355 in the subject line of your application. The subject of the email message and the attachment must consist of the text ‘ChinaCreative + applicant’s last name’.

Candidates will be interviewed in September 2016.

Salary indication
€3,168 to €3,527 gross per month
Closing date : 31 August 2016
Hours : 38 hours per week
Vacancy number : 16-355

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