PhD position The added value of local entrepreneurship in retailing (1.0 FTE)


Faculty of Economics and Business


University of Groningen

Since its foundation in 1614, the University of Groningen has enjoyed an international reputation as a dynamic and innovative centre of higher education offering high-quality teaching and research. Belonging to the best research universities of Europe and joining forces with prestigious partner universities and networks, the University of Groningen is truly an international place of knowledge.

Faculty of Economics and Business
The Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB) offers an inspiring study and working environment for students and employees. International accreditation enables the Faculty to assess performance against the highest international standards. It also creates an exciting environment of continuous improvement. FEB's programmes, academic staff and research do well on various excellence ranking lists.

SOM, the graduate school and research institute of the Faculty of Economics and Business has one PhD position available on the topic ‘The added value of local entrepreneurship in retailing’.

The project will supervised by Prof. Laurens Sloot and Prof. Tammo Bijmolt and will be embedded in SOM’s research programme in Marketing ( The project is closely related to the Entrepreneurship in retailing chair of Prof. Laurens Sloot, and sponsored by the foundation for Local Entrepreneurship in Retailing (Stichting LRO).

Job description

About 35% of the income of households is spent on retail purchases such as food, fashion, toys and music. Consumers purchase these products and services in regular and online stores. Most stores are owned and operated by large retail chains, such as Action, C&A or Albert Heijn, but many other stores are operated by franchisees. A franchisee is a small business owner who operates one or several local stores. Franchisees are independent owners of third-party retail outlets. These outlets are related to retail chains such as Jumbo, PLUS, Spar, HEMA, Gamma or McDonalds (the franchisor), where these franchisors provide support with the branding, communication, assortment, etc.

In this research project, the PhD candidate will study the added value that local retail entrepreneurs might bring to the business. Research questions will be determined in a close collaboration between the PhD student, the supervisors, and the Stichting LRO, and is expected to include questions like:

• how do franchise operated stores perform compared to company owned stores?
• what characteristics might explain why some local retail entrepreneurs are more successful than others?
• what is the impact of the growth of online retail on the performance of local storeowners?


The PhD candidate should have a background (MSc, research master) in marketing or a discipline related to the topic described above, such as retailing, entrepreneurship, business & management, economics, or another relevant discipline within social sciences, including a strong training in research methods.

Conditions of employment

Contract length: 48 maanden.

We offer you in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities:

- a gross monthly starting salary of € 2,325 which increases yearly to a maximum of € 2,972
- a holiday allowance of 8% gross annual income each year in May
- an 8.3% year-end bonus in December
- a temporary full-time appointment for a period of four years, under the condition of a positive assessment at the end of the first year.

An assessment may be part of the procedure, consisting of psychological tests and an interview.

Starting date: 1 September 2020 or slightly later if agreed upon by both parties.

Job Application

Do you want to become a member of our team? Please send your application to us, by submitting the following documents:

1. your CV
2. a motivation letter (1A4 max) and a short study proposal for the PhD project (2 A4 max
3. a scan of your diploma including transcripts
4. proof of English proficiency
5. other relevant documents.

The documents 1-4 are compulsory and please note that incomplete application packages will not be taken into consideration.

You can submit your application until 15 June 11:59pm / before 16 June 2020 Dutch local time (CET) by means of the application form (click on "Apply" below on the advertisement on the university website).

Unsolicited marketing is not appreciated.

Additional information

For additional information, please contact:

Prof. Laurens Sloot (for specific information on this project)

Prof. Tammo Bijmolt (for specific information on this project)

For more general information

In your application, please always include the job opening ID 220182

Digital application form