PhD position in the SCOOP Program on Identities and Networks #2 (1.0 FTE)


Faculty of Behavioural and Social Sciences


University of Groningen

The University of Groningen is a research university with a global outlook, deeply rooted in Groningen, City of Talent. Quality has had top priority for four hundred years, and with success: the University is currently in or around the top 100 on several influential ranking lists.

The Faculty of Behavioural and Social Sciences is a centre of knowledge focusing on individuals and society. The faculty studies issues relating to human behaviour, and the relationships between people and society as a whole. This includes the study of how people function under normal circumstances, but also of the problems encountered by individuals or groups, and how these can be resolved or prevented. The Department of Social Psychology is part of the Faculty of Behavioural and Social Sciences.

Job description

Full title: PhD position in the SCOOP Program on Identities and Networks #2 How psychological processes relating to social identities and social networks interact to sustain cooperation” at the (Sub)Department of Social Psychology of the University of Groningen. (1.0 FTE)

Function description
We are seeking a candidate for a PhD project to investigate the interaction between social identity processes, and processes that are central to regulating social relations (interpersonal, intragroup, intergroup) that occur in social networks, that can promote cooperation over time. Both social identities and social networks provide potential answers to the question of how and why (sustainable) cooperation can be fostered but also how and why it is undermined. A key strength of social networks is that they foster interpersonal bonds and the interdependence/reciprocity associated with these can promote cooperation reinforced by proximity/accountability in the network. Nevertheless, interdependence, when too narrowly conceived can also be a weakness to the extent that it reinforces an instrumental mindset (e.g., tit-for-tat). Social identities can provide a framework for bounded reciprocity, encouraging homophily, but can also form source of conflict as well as cooperation (especially vs. outgroups). Although social identity and the interdependence/ reciprocity processes occurring in networks have often been pitted against each other in social psychological research, this project will investigate when and how these two broad approaches might complement each other, and compensate for different weaknesses in promoting sustainable cooperation (see more detailed project description via link below).

This PhD project will be based in the (Sub)Department of Social Psychology, RuG, and conducted in close interaction with a SCOOP sister-project based on Sociology focusing on social mechanisms linking group identities, social network structures and sustainable cooperation. Links between the projects will be maintained by overlapping supervision teams and through joint project meetings.

See the link below for a more detailed description of the project:

For a detailed description of the sister project in Sociology see link below:

The project is part of the transdisciplinary and interdisciplinary research programme SCOOP: Roadmaps to Resilient Societies (see: ). SCOOP is a research and training centre dedicated to the interdisciplinary study of sustainable cooperation as a key feature of resilient societies. SCOOP brings together researchers of the University of Groningen, Utrecht University, VU Amsterdam, Erasmus University Rotterdam, and Radboud University Nijmegen. The PhD student will participate in the SCOOP PhD training program, see:


You should have:

- (almost) finished a (research) master's degree in the domain of Social Psychology, or a related discipline
- a solid training in social psychology, quantitative methods and statistics
- eagerness to learn to work in an interdisciplinary research team and to conduct interdisciplinary research in the SCOOP programme
- an excellent academic record
- eagerness to publish international articles and write a dissertation
- demonstrable competences as conceptual capacity, presenting, monitoring, planning and organizing
- good social and communication skills
- excellent command of English and academic writing skills
- motivation and ability to teach in undergraduate sociology courses.

Conditions of employment

Contract length: 48 months.

In accordance with the collective labor agreement for Dutch Universities, we offer:

- a gross salary of € 2,443 gross per month in the first year to a maximum of € 3,122 gross per month in the final year (salary scale PhD), based on a full-time position (1.0 FTE)
- 8% holiday allowance and 8.3% year-end bonus on the annual gross income
- attractive secondary and market terms of employment
- job classification in the UFO job profile of PhD
- a position for four years (fulltime). The successful candidate will first be offered a temporary position of one year with the option of renewal for another three years. Prolongation of the contract is contingent on sufficient progress in the first year to indicate that a successful completion of the PhD thesis within the contract period is to be expected.
- a PhD training program is part of the agreement and the successful candidate will be enrolled in the Graduate School of the Faculty (the Kurt Lewin Institue).
- PhD students in Social Psychology are expected to contribute to the department's undergraduate teaching program.
The preferred start date is 1 September 2022.

Job Application

The application should include the following:

1. a cover letter explaining your motivation for the position
2. CV
3. the names and contact details of three referees and an indication of whether we can contact them at this stage
4. and preferably also additional documents such as grade sheets, writing samples (e.g. master thesis)

You can submit your application until 30 June 11:59pm / before 1 July 2022 12:00 pm Dutch local time (CET) by means of the application form (click on "Apply" below on the advertisement on the university website).

Job interviews with selected candidates are expected to be held on July 13 and 14, 2022.

The University of Groningen strives to be a university in which students and staff are respected and feel at home, regardless of differences in background, experiences, perspectives, and identities. We believe that working on our core values of inclusion and equality are a joint responsibility and we are constructively working on creating a socially safe environment. Diversity among students and staff members enriches academic debate and contributes to the quality of our teaching and research. We therefore invite applicants from underrepresented groups in particular to apply. For more information, see also our diversity policy webpage:[…]/

Our selection procedure follows the guidelines of the Recruitment code (NVP): and European Commission's European Code of Conduct for recruitment of researchers:

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Additional information

For additional information, please contact:

Prof. Russell Spears

In your application, please always include the job opening ID 222386

Extra informatie kan worden verkregen via een van de volgende links:

The conditions of employment

Digital application form