Utrecht University, Netherlands invites online Application for number of Fully Funded PhD Degree at various Departments. We are providing a list of Fully Funded PhD Programs available at Utrecht University, Netherlands.
Eligible candidate may Apply as soon as possible.
(01) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD position in Arithmetic Geometry (1.0 FTE)
We offer a PhD position in arithmetic geometry at Utrecht University. As a PhD student you will carry out mathematical research in the context of the research project “p-structures on moduli spaces of abelian varieties and Drinfeld modules”, funded by an NWO Vidi grant. This project focusses on arithmetic properties of (supersingular) abelian varieties and Drinfeld modules over finite fields and their moduli spaces. You will be part of the research team of
Deadline : 10 December 2023
(02) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD position on the mechanisms of strain localisation during subduction shear zone development (0.8 – 1.0 FTE)
Development of subduction plate boundary shear zones is a prerequisite for facilitating and sustaining global plate recycling, and therefore operation of plate tectonics. The aim of this PhD project is to combine field observations and structural geology, quantitative microstructural analysis, and laboratory experiments to identify weakening mechanisms that facilitate interface development. This PhD position can explore techniques and topics including, but not limited to: (1) structural analysis and (high-resolution) electron microscopy to characterize the mechanical properties and competing strengths of amphibolites and peridotites across an exhumed, paleo-proto-plate boundary; (2) microstructural constraints on the contribution of shear heating to initial localization; (3) nanoindentation experiments to quantify constitutive parameters that describe plasticity in strain-accommodating minerals. Rock types, mineralogies, and mechanisms that succeed in initiating subduction in today’s Earth system will provide a lens to re-evaluate the likelihood of early-Earth subduction. The basis for this position is Utrecht University, the Netherlands, with main supervisor Dr. Alissa Kotowski. Collaborations are a.o. foreseen with staff at Cambridge University (UK) and McGill University (Canada).
Deadline :4 January 2024
(03) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD position Dutch international development research in geography and its intertwinement with the Dutch international development field (1949-2000) (1.0 FTE)
Would you like to examine the science-society interface between the field of international development cooperation and academic work in geography on international development issues? Or more specifically: What was the role of geographic research and teaching in shaping ideas, labour markets practices, institutions and interventions in the emergent field of international development in the second half of the 20th century (1949-2000)? Then you are welcome to join our team. The project is funded by NWO as part of the VIDI Grant “Academic Impact Strategies for Long-term engagement (
Deadline : 1 December 2023
(04) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD on The Influence of Academic Work in Human Geography and Planning on the Dutch Spatial Order (1945-2000) (1.0 FTE)
This PhD project will catalogue the contribution of geographers and planners to the making of the modern Netherlands, tracing these academic disciplines’ societal impact in changing political-economic conjunctures. Moreover, the project will highlight the contribution of (academic) geographers to the history of Dutch spatial planning, complementing the urban design focus of much of the existing literature. The PhD trajectory’s prime data source will be a combination of archival and interview research, where the creation of a new digital archive of 20th century documents and correspondence is an important pillar. Therefore, familiarity and/or interest in historical/archival methods, qualitative research and digital and computational analysis of large archives are important features of the role. In addition, the research will draw on the results of a large scale alumni survey, conducted by the larger project team. The project will also engage with the contemporary spatial planning community to learn for the future from the past. You will be systematically uncovering, documenting, cataloguing and tracking the influence of the Dutch academic disciplines of human geography and planning on the spatial order of the Netherlands at different scales. We will look at the national scale but also at provincial and municipal institutions as well as the role of applied research centres, conferences and the like. This influence could be intellectual, through publications; social, through advisory work; or indirect, through the job market and social networks of students and peers.
Deadline : 1 December 2023
(05) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: Combined PhD-teaching position methods in interdisciplinary sustainability education (1.0 FTE)
Today’s complex sustainability challenges like climate change, feeding the world’s population, and biodiversity loss surpass single academic disciplines and require interdisciplinary approaches. The external link of Utrecht University (UU) and University College Utrecht (UCU) therefore consider interdisciplinarity a crucial aspect in our education programmes. To inform our interdisciplinary methods in education, the Copernicus Institute and UCU are looking for a combined teacher-PhD with an interest in education and sustainability science. In this position you will combine research on interdisciplinary sustainability education at the Copernicus Institute with teaching at UCU. As a combined teacher-PhD you have a 6-year contract to complete your PhD research and obtain a University Teaching Qualification (UTQ/BKO) in combination with teaching and education development. Research and teaching tasks are divided equally over this 6-year period. Your research and teaching will have an impact on education at UCU, the Copernicus Institute, and beyond.
Deadline : 15 December 2023
(06) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD position: Spatial inequality in Water-Energy-Food security and Health in South Africa (0.8 – 1.0 FTE)
The Faculty of Geosciences of Utrecht University and the Department of Primary and Community Care of the Radboud University Medical Center invite applications for a PhD position on WEF nexus and Health in South Africa. South Africa is one of the most unevenly developed countries in the world. About 33% of South Africa’s population lives in rural areas with limited access to basic services such as clean and safe water, affordable and clean energy, and balanced and nutritious diets. This is exacerbated by climate change and has direct and indirect impacts on public health and wellbeing. This project will assess spatial inequality in water‐energy‐food (WEF) security and the implications for public health in rural South Africa and how this will be affected by climate change, and will identify future‐proof interventions to enhance the resilience of vulnerable rural communities to health crises.
Deadline : 10 December 2023
(07) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD position in Natural Language Processing: variation in co-reference and reference (0.8 – 1.0 FTE)
Early research on learning from data with disagreement in Natural Language Processing (NLP) was often motivated by findings about “anaphoric” referring expressions such as “he”, “she” or “it”— but it turns out that often people disagree on what these pronouns mean, particularly in conversations. Methods for learning from data with disagreements (`learning from crowds’) have been successfully applied to other types of data containing disagreements, and substantial data sets containing multiple judgments on anaphoric reference now exist. But computational models of referring expression interpretation that can effectively learn from such data sets do not yet exist. Training co-reference models ‘from crowds’ has proven to be challenging to design, and there is no consensus over the question of how to test/evaluate interpretation models that take variation into account. This project will focus on addressing such challenges. It will also develop metrics that do justice to interpretative variation for co-reference, and use these metrics to test models. Ideally, the development of these metrics will be informed by cognitive and behavioural evidence on the processing of reference.
Deadline : 3 December 2023
(08) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD position in Natural Language Processing: subjectivity in the detection of problematic language (0.8 – 1.0 FTE)
Variation in interpretation is particularly frequent with judgments that depend on an individual’s subjective biases, such as deciding whether a joke is funny or not. This PhD project focuses on NLP methods for subjective interpretive tasks with a high societal relevance, such as offensive/abusive language detection, used e.g., by social media platforms to identify cases of problematic use of language that can be harmful to people. Judgments on whether a given utterance is problematic are notoriously subjective, where differences between judges can have difficult cultural, ethnic, and racial overtones. The project will develop models for detecting problematic language that take into account the fact that the judgments involved can be controversial.
Deadline : 3 December 2023
(09) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD position in Natural Language Processing: conflicting interpretations in dialogue (0.8 – 1.0 FTE)
In conversations, we produce language under time pressure. One of the effects of this time pressure is that less attention is paid ensuring that expressions can be interpreted univocally, resulting in misunderstandings that often go undetected. Such misunderstandings between dialogue partners cause problems for all aspects of NLP research. The first problem is that specifying that an expression was interpreted in one way by one participant and in another way by the other participant is difficult with present annotation methods. In turn, this makes it difficult to train models that can produce participant-specific interpretations and/or recognise disagreements in interpretation. In this project you will study misunderstandings in dialogue and how conversational agents can recognise and resolve them.
Deadline : 3 December 2023
(10) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD candidate for The Footprint of Colonialism (0.8 – 1.0 fte)
Quantifying the cumulative attribution of countries to biodiversity loss and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions arising from land change is of critical importance to achieve global environmental justice. Estimating countries attribution to past land change via footprint analysis gives clear information for negotiations around loss and damage finances as recently debated at United Nations conference on climate Change (COP27) and biodiversity (COP15). The aim of this project is to quantify the relative attribution of different countries to biodiversity loss and GHG emissions arising from land change since the colonial period using footprint analysis. This will illustrate to what extent the burden of resource extraction has shifted over time and how colonial legacies impact environmental footprints in present day. We will use an approach that integrates the HYDE database of landcover change with reconstructions of resource flows based on historical data and footprint modelling techniques.
Deadline :14 December 2023
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(11) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD candidate EFFEct: Enhancing Efficiency and Effectiveness in Education (1.0 FTE)
The Department of Sociology of the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences has a job opening for a PhD candidate interested in enhancing efficiency and effectiveness in education. High-quality education is a key driver of economic growth and social progress. Despite large investments in education over the past few decades, the quality of education in some EU countries has stagnated or even deteriorated. Marginalised populations are particularly vulnerable to the negative consequences arising from inadequate educational policies. Understanding the efficiency and (cost-)effectiveness of investment in quality education is crucial for allocating resources to where they could have the largest economic and social impact. Thanks to a four years PhD scholarship, you will focus on providing evidence-based policy recommendations to improve the quality of education. The recommendations will be grounded in sound academic research, stemming from quasi-experimental methods that you will use to provide causal evidence. In particular, you will focus on the effectiveness of religious schooling and adult education, and the connection between education, family environment, and the labor market, among others.
Deadline : 3 December 2023
(12) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD Position Enhancing Estuarine Flood Resilience by Tidal Foreshore-Management Technologies (1.0 FTE)
Your main task will be to develop the understanding and approaches for minimizing erosion of the tidal flats and marsh edges in the Dutch Eastern Scheldt. Current maintenance of flood safety and nature functions of the Eastern Scheldt tidal system involves i) adding sand on tidal flats and ii) building stone dams as erosion protection at marsh edges. You will combine field experiments and flume studies to investigate 1) how to use mud instead of sand as building material and 2) how to develop nature-friendly approaches to minimize erosion of both tidal flats and marsh edges. Through collaboration with other researchers and stakeholders within the Future FRM Tech programme, you will design a strategy to enable a more sustainable management of the Eastern Scheldt estuary. You will be based at the Physical Geography department at Utrecht University and, given the large amount of fieldwork in the Eastern Scheldt, you are also expected to spend considerable time at the department of Estuarine & Delta systems at NIOZ-Yerseke. At both departments, you will be part of a vibrant PhD community and research groups with renown expertise in coastal systems. As a project team we will collectively gain system understanding, be relevant in the application of our work, and communicate in an open and constructive way. You will gain skills in science communication for interdisciplinary collaboration and for explaining your results to partners that intend to use the knowledge. You will present your work at meetings and (inter)national scientific conferences.
Deadline : 8 January 2024
(13) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD candidate (fully funded) on Paleo-ecological data science
This project is funded by NWO in partnership with companies and applied research institutes that work the field of national landscape management, archaeology and subsurface modeling. It builds on the recently developed Dutch national pollen database and aims to create a series of paleo-vegetation map layers for the period 15,000 to present. The project will utilise quantitative landcover models to populate geomorphological landscape forms based on the available pollen data. We will create an initiative to highlight ‘paleostories’ of interest to the public via our project partners. The project is embedded in the palaeoecology group of the Department of Physical Geography which is a growing team of palaeobotanists and geographers that aims at reconstructing and understanding past landscape and climate development. See also:
Deadline : 15 January 2024
(14) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD position on land use and environmental impacts of biobased products (1.0 FTE)
The urgent need to mitigate climate change, to stop biodiversity loss and to move from fossil to renewable resources motivates the increased use of bio-based resources, but can thereby create multiple, sometimes conflicting sustainability impacts. There is a need for assessment methods that enable a robust and forward-looking impact assessment of existing and new bio-based solutions to determine their sustainability. The large majority of the environmental impacts of bio-based products are related to land use and land management changes resulting from feedstock production and extraction. Impacts of land-use change highly depend on the biophysical context and are therefore location specific, temporally dynamic, and non-linear. The current statical LCA methods cannot capture the dynamic and non-linear impacts from land use. There is therefore a need to incorporate spatial and temporal variability of environmental impacts into existing LCA methodology. The Copernicus Institute of Utrecht University is looking for a PhD candidate that will be working as part of the Horizon Europe project “ESCIB” (Environmental Sustainability and Circularity criteria for Industrial Bio-based systems), funded by the European Commission. Amongst others, the ESCIB project aims to develop a new dynamic method for assessing the environmental sustainability of bio-based systems, particularly addressing impacts related to land use and including circularity of bio-based systems.
Deadline : 7 January 2024
(15) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD position: Modelling the impact of climate change on spatial inequality in Water-Energy-Food security in South Africa (0.8 – 1.0 FTE)
The Faculty of Geosciences of Utrecht University invites applications for a PhD position on climate change and the WEF nexus in South Africa. South Africa is one of the most unevenly developed countries in the world. About 33% of South Africa’s population lives in rural areas with limited access to basic services such as clean and safe water, affordable and clean energy, and balanced and nutritious diets. This is exacerbated by climate change and has direct and indirect impacts on public health and wellbeing. This project will assess spatial inequality in water‐energy‐food (WEF) security and the implications for public health in rural South Africa and how this will be affected by climate change, and will identify future‐proof interventions to enhance the resilience of vulnerable rural communities to health crises.
Deadline : 7 January 2024
(16) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD position on Rosewater, nightingale, and gunpowder (1.0 FTE)
RONIGU is a five-year research project (September 2023-August 2028) that studies the history of Muslim conceptualizations of the senses and of sense perception in the period of the three “gunpowder empires” of the Ottomans, Safavids, and Mughals. The PhD studentship is advertised in the area of Ottoman/Safavid studies, with a focus on vision/visuality and hearing/sound in Islamic intellectual history as well as the history of the body in a broad sense. If you as an applicant wish to pursue other lines of inquiry in sensory history (smell, taste, touch) you are encouraged to consult with Professor Lange at [email protected]. The PhD position (4 years) is embedded in the research project “Rosewater, nightingale and gunpowder: A sensory history of the Islamic world, 1500-1900″ (RONIGU), funded by a Vici Grant of the Dutch Science Organisation (NWO) and led by Professor Lange of the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies.
Deadline : 1 January 2024
(17) PhD Degree – Fully Funded
PhD position summary/title: PhD or Postdoc position in Multicellular Modelling of the Impact of Extracellular Matrix on Tumour Cell Migration (1.0 FTE)
Cell migration is a fundamental process in developmental biology. It is also critical in early cancer metastasis: in carcinomas, cells that leave the primary tumour must migrate through dense extracellular matrix. Even in genetically identical cells, the decision to migrate and the mode of migration can be very heterogeneous. Some cells do not migrate at all, while others migrate individually, collectively as a loose uncoordinated flock of cells, or in tightly coordinated cell clusters. You will investigate how biophysical cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions lead to the emergence of different migratory phenotypes using computer simulations.
Deadline : 8 January 2024
About Utrecht University, Netherlands – Official Website
Utrecht University is a public research university in Utrecht, Netherlands. Established 26 March 1636 (385 years ago), it is one of the oldest universities in the Netherlands. In 2018, it had an enrolment of 31,801 students, and employed 7,191 faculty and staff. In 2018, 525 PhD degrees were awarded and 6,948 scientific articles were published. The 2018 budget of the university was €857 million.
Utrecht University counts a number of distinguished scholars among its alumni and faculty, including 12 Nobel Prize laureates and 13 Spinoza Prize laureates. Utrecht University has been placed consistently in the top 100 universities in the world by prominent international ranking tables. The university is ranked the best university in the Netherlands by the Shanghai Ranking of World Universities 2019, ranking 13th in Europe and 49th in the world.
The university’s motto is “Sol Iustitiae Illustra Nos,” which means “May the Sun of Righteousness Enlighten Us”. This motto was gleaned from a literal Latin Bible translation of Malachi 4:2. Rutgers University, having historical connections with Utrecht University, uses a modified version of this motto.
Utrecht University is led by the University Board, consisting of prof. dr. Henk Kummeling (Rector Magnificus), prof. dr. Anton Pijpers (Chair) and prof. mr. Annetje Ottow (Vice Chair).
Close ties are harboured with other institutions internationally through its membership in the League of European Research Universities (LERU), the Utrecht Network and the European University Association (EUA).
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