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Leib­niz-Insti­tut für Raum­be­zo­gene Sozi­al­for­schung (IRS)

Das Leib­niz-Insti­tut für Raum­be­zo­gene Sozi­al­for­schung ist ein inter­na­tio­nal aner­kann­ter For­schungs­part­ner und besetzt zen­trale Kom­pe­tenz­fel­der der sozi­al­wis­sen­schaft­li­chen Raum­for­schung in Europa. Sein Auf­trag ist die Erfor­schung der Trans­for­ma­tion und Steue­rung von Städ­ten und Regio­nen aus sozi­al­wis­sen­schaft­li­chen Per­spek­ti­ven.

3 PhD Posi­ti­ons in Human Geo­gra­phy (3 years)

Work­ing field:

The Leib­niz Insti­tute for Research on Soci­ety and Space (IRS) in Erkner (near Ber­lin) is offer­ing three PhD pos­i­tions in an inter­na­tional Junior Research Group “Con­struct­ing Transna­tional Spaces of Higher Edu­ca­tion”. The pos­i­tions enable the suc­cess­ful applic­ants to con­duct research on the geo­graph­ies of glob­al­isa­tion of higher edu­ca­tion and develop and real­ise their doc­toral dis­ser­ta­tions. The Junior Re-search Group is sub-divided into three inter­re­lated sub-pro­jects each of which employs one doc­toral researcher. The research­ers will be able to con­duct field­work abroad (depend­ing on the sub-pro­ject either in Europe, South­east Asia and/or the Gulf States), spend short-term stays at the part­ner uni­versit­ies abroad, and attend inter­na­tional con­fer­ences and work­shops. The pos­i­tions are for three years each and paid accord­ing to TV-L 13 (65 %) of the fed­eral Ger­man pay scale (cur­rently approx. 29.000 - 32.000 Euro per annum depend­ing on pre­vi­ous work­ing exper­i­ence).

Require­ments:

  • Excel­lent Mas­ter’s degree in human geo­graphy (espe­cially eco­nomic geo­graphy or urban geo­graphy) or related dis­cip­lines (includ­ing polit­ical sci­ences, soci­ology, anthro­po­logy, …),
  • Know­ledge of (qual­it­at­ive) social sci­entific research meth­ods;
  • Keen interest and motiv­a­tion to explore aspects of the geo­graph­ies of glob­al­isa­tion of higher edu­ca­tion, and will­ing­ness to con­duct field­work abroad;
  • Abil­ity to work inde­pend­ently and as part of a team;
  • Excel­lent writ­ten and spoken Eng­lish, Ger­man lan­guage skills advant­age­ous, other lan­guage skills highly appre­ci­ated.

What we of­fer:

The Junior Research Group “Con­struct­ing Transna­tional Spaces of Higher Edu­ca­tion: Inter­na­tional Branch Cam­pus Devel­op­ment at the Inter­face of Net­work and Ter­rit­orial Embed­ded­ness” is fun­ded by the Leib­niz Asso­ci­ation (Leib­niz Com­pet­i­tion 2018). The pro­ject is led by Dr. Jana Kleibert in the “Dynam­ics of Eco­nomic Spaces” research depart­ment at the IRS, in col­lab­or­a­tion with the Geo­graphy Depart­ment of the Hum­boldt Uni­versity of Ber­lin, the Cos­mo­polis Centre for Urban Research at the Vrije Uni­versiteit Brus­sels (Prof. Bas van Heur), and the Depart­ment of Geo­graphy at the National Uni­versity of Singa­pore (Prof. Neil Coe). It seeks to crit­ic­ally invest­ig­ate the glob­al­isa­tion of higher edu­ca­tion, spe­cific­ally the rise of for­eign uni­versity branch cam­puses as both embed­ded rela­tion­ally (as part of net­works) and ter­rit­ori­ally (in places).

Please spe­cify in your applic­a­tion to which of the research pro­jects you would like to apply:

PhD Pro­ject #1: Uni­versit­ies as transna­tion­al­ising net­works of edu­ca­tion
This pro­ject invest­ig­ates European uni­versit­ies’ rationales to invest abroad and con­struct multi-loc­a­tional uni­versit­ies, focus­ing on the drivers (e.g. neo­lib­er­al­isa­tion, fin­an­cial­isa­tion, increas­ing re-stric­tions on for­eign stu­dent visas), strategies, and tools (e.g. rank­ings) of the mar­ket­isa­tion of inter­na­tional higher edu­ca­tion.

PhD Pro­ject #2: Transna­tional spaces of edu­ca­tion for urban/eco­nomic devel­op­ment
This pro­ject invest­ig­ates the rise of indi­vidual branch cam­puses and entire for­eign ‘edu­ca­tion cit­ies’ from the per­spect­ive of select host coun­tries (in South­east Asia and/or the Middle East). We will ana­lyse to what extent transna­tional cam­puses become ter­rit­ori­ally embed­ded and com­par­at­ively eval­u­ate their role in eco­nomic and urban devel­op­ment strategies and real­it­ies (e.g. smart cit­ies, spec­u­lat­ive urb­an­ism, build­ing know­ledge eco­nom­ies).

PhD Pro­ject #3: Inside transna­tional spaces of edu­ca­tion
This pro­ject invest­ig­ates the work­ings of branch cam­puses or ‘edu­ca­tion cit­ies’ (in South­east Asia and/or the Middle East) and seeks to under­stand how they assemble transna­tional flows of cap­ital, people (transna­tional mobil­it­ies of stu­dents and staff), and know­ledges. We will unpack how know­ledge and the value of ‘global degrees’ is con­struc­ted in and through branch cam­puses.

How to ap­ply:

If you are inter­ested, please send a let­ter of motiv­a­tion, cur­riculum vitae, cop­ies of rel­ev­ant dip­lo­mas, a writ­ing sample (20 pages max., e.g. chapter of your Mas­ter’s thesis), and con­tact details of two ref­er­ences in a single pdf file (max. 2 MB) by e-mail to bewerbung@leibniz-irs.de with the sub­ject title “Transna­tional Edu­ca­tion”, the ref­er­ence num­ber 1118 and an indic­a­tion of the num­ber of the sub-pro­ject (#1-3). You can sub­mit your applic­a­tion in Eng­lish or Ger­man. Short­l­is­ted can­did­ates will be asked to sub­mit a short exposé.
The IRS is com­mit­ted to the prin­ciple of equal­ity of oppor­tun­it­ies. Female applic­ants are espe­cially encour­aged to apply. Severely dis­abled applic­ants with equi­val­ent qual­i­fic­a­tions and aptitude will be given pref­er­en­tial con­sid­er­a­tion. The IRS sup­ports the com­pat­ib­il­ity of career and fam­ily and was cer­ti­fied as a fam­ily-ori­ented employer in 2015.