Postdoctoral position in the study of radicalization, extremism, and political violence at the Department of the Study of Religion

The Department of the Study of Religion, School of Culture and Society, Faculty of Arts, Aarhus University, invites applications for a two-year fixed-term postdoctoral position in the study of radicalization, extremism, and political violence. The appointment begins on 1 September 2021 or as soon as possible thereafter.

Place of employment: Department of the Study of Religion, Nobelparken, Jens Chr. Skous Vej 3 – 7, 8000 Aarhus C.

The university is keen for its staff to reflect the diversity of society and thus welcomes applications from all qualified applicants regardless of their personal background.


Research context

  • We are looking for an innovative scholar with a background in sociology, political science, criminology, psychology, history or any other relevant discipline, preferably with a specialisation in the study of the far right or of political Islam.
  • This position is made possible by a H2020 grant from the European Commission for the project ‘Determining multi-level led causes and testing intervention designs to reduce radicalisation, extremism, and political violence in north-western Europe through social inclusion’ (DRIVE). The project is led by Dr. Tahir Abbas of Leiden University and in Aarhus by Professor Mark Sedgwick. It seeks to understand the nature and outcome of Islamist and far right reciprocal radicalisation in Denmark, the Netherlands, Norway, and the UK, with a focus on the role of social exclusion. Using insights from sociology, political science, critical terrorism studies, criminology, and other related fields, the project seeks to better understand, and then design and introduce interventions to help work with violent and non-violent extremists. The partners in this project include Leiden University, the University of Liverpool, University of Oslo, Umeå University, and the University of Cambridge.
  • The successful applicant is expected to participate in project activities (fieldwork, workshops, and conferences), and in activities at the department such as lectures, seminars and workshops.

The positionThe successful applicant is expected to work with Professor Sedgwick and other members of the DRIVE team in carrying out research with selected groups in far-right and Islamist milieus in Aarhus and Copenhagen.
Applicants are asked to submit:
  • a concise statement of motivation for applying for the position (maximum one page)
  • a maximum of five publications
The successful applicant will be expected to:
  • Conduct independent and collaborative research on the role of social exclusion in radicalisation amongst people with Islamist and far right convictions;
  • Independently carry out fieldwork in Denmark and to support the research across the other three countries in the project;
  • Disseminate the project’s findings as co-author in high-ranking international peer-reviewed journals, conference presentations, policy reports and other relevant formats;
  • Represent the project to key stakeholders such as the European Commission, academics, and policymakers/practitioners working on the prevention of extremism, radicalization, and terrorism.

TeachingThe position will not involve teaching.

Knowledge exchange
The successful applicant will be expected to exchange knowledge with various sectors of society and to contribute actively to public debate in areas related to the position.

Qualifications
Applicants for this position must hold a PhD degree in sociology, political science, criminology, psychology, history or any other relevant discipline.
Applicants must document:
  • doctoral-level experience of qualitative interviewing, preferably in a minority or far-right environment, or in a comparable environment.
  • an interest in the study of radicalization, extremism, and political violence.
  • knowledge of the Danish or international far right or of the Danish or European Islamist milieu.
  • an international research profile including a solid track-record of publications on terrorism and/or political violence in international peer-reviewed academic journals, or the potential to achieve such a record.
  • fluency in written and spoken Danish and English. Danish is essential, given that the successful applicant will be expected to be able to immediately conduct interviews and fieldwork in that language.
Please upload a maximum of five publications alongside your application.

The application must be submitted in English.

Please note that only publications which are actually submitted alongside applications will be assessed; a list of publications is not sufficient. Applications which are not accompanied by such publications will not be assessed.

Professional references or recommendations should not be included. Applicants who are selected for an interview may be asked to provide professional references.

For further information about the position, please contact Professor Mark Sedgwick, email: mjrs@cas.au.dk.

For more information about the application, please contact HR supporter Marianne Birn, e-mail: mbb@au.dk.

The work environmentThe Department of the Study of Religion at Aarhus University is one of the largest research environments in the world in this field, including strong research competences in Norse religion, contemporary religion, Islamic studies, cognition and experimental studies. The environment is interdisciplinary in its organisation and working methods, and the programme's researchers are involved in a wide range of research projects with colleagues from other fields, such as biblical studies and church history within theology, the humanities in general, the social science and the natural science.
Read more: https://cas.au.dk/en/about-the-school/departments/the-study-of-religion/

School of Culture and SocietyAt the School of Culture and Society the object of research and teaching is the interplay between culture and society in time and space:

- From the traditional disciplines of the humanities and theology to applied social research
- From Antiquity to the issues facing contemporary societies
- From familiar Danish cultural forms to other very different worlds
- From local questions to global challenges.

The school’s goal is to produce compelling research with an international resonance, as well as offering teaching and talent development of high quality. The school has a broad cooperative interface with society, both in Denmark and abroad, and contributes to social innovation, research communication and further and continuing education.

Qualification requirementsApplicants should hold a PhD or equivalent academic qualifications.

FormalitiesFaculty of Arts refers to the Ministerial Order on the Appointment of Academic Staff at Danish Universities (the Appointment Order).Aarhus University also offers a Junior Researcher Development Programme targeted at career development for postdocs at AU. You can read more about it here: https://talent.au.dk/junior-researcher-development-programme/

If nothing else is noted, applications must be submitted in English. Application deadline is at 11.59 pm Danish time (same as Central European Time) on the deadline day.

All interested candidates are encouraged to apply, regardless of their personal bagground.
Shortlists are prepared with the candidates that have been selected for a detailed academic assessment. A committee set up by the head of school is responsible for selecting the most qualified candidates. See this link for further information about shortlisting at the Faculty of Arts: shortlisting

Faculty of ArtsThe Faculty of Arts is one of five main academic areas at Aarhus University.
The faculty contributes to Aarhus University's research, talent development, knowledge exchange and degree programmes.
With its 550 academic staff members, 275 PhD students, 9,500 BA and MA students, and 1,500 students following continuing/further education programmes, the faculty constitutes a strong and diverse research and teaching environment.
The Faculty of Arts consists of the School of Communication and Culture, the School of Culture and Society and the Danish School of Education. Each of these units has strong academic environments and forms the basis for interdisciplinary research and education.
The faculty's academic environments and degree programmes engage in international collaboration and share the common goal of contributing to the development of knowledge, welfare and culture in interaction with society.

Read more at arts.au.dk/en

The application must be submitted via Aarhus University’s recruitment system, which can be accessed under the job advertisement on Aarhus University's website.

Aarhus University Aarhus University is an academically diverse and research-intensive university with a strong commitment to high-quality research and education and the development of society nationally and globally. The university offers an inspiring research and teaching environment to its 38,000 students (FTEs) and 8,000 employees, and has an annual revenues of EUR 885 million. Learn more at www.international.au.dk/

 


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