Postdoc Political Science / Political Anthropology at KITLV/KNAW

Location: Leiden
Max hours per week: 38,00
Max salary: 3,877
Duration of agreement: 2 years
Apply until: 10/01/2023


About the project/Work package
Driven by the increasing public awareness of the impact of hurricanes and the devastation of coastal areas, Island(er)s at the Helm contributes to understanding the current ways the islanders cope with these challenges and based upon these research findings, seeks to contribute to equipping (Dutch) Caribbean societies with proficient tools for confronting these challenging climatic phenomena.

Such aforementioned adverse events—hurricanes and the devastation of coastal areas—have significant ecological, social, and cultural implications, affecting the basic living conditions and heritage of the island inhabitants. This research builds on the principle that local-specific practices and ontologies of Caribbean societies are crucial for promoting sustainable Water, Food, and Shelter-nexuses. The project brings together researchers and societal partners to employ a mixture of technical, traditional, and contemporary knowledge practices for studying climate change adaptation.


Find out more on our project via our website or socials.


Job Profile
The Postdoc position for WP4 will be reserved for a scholar in political science or policy studies who has an affinity with the research program and is familiar with the Dutch Caribbean. Serving fulltime for two years starting in September in 2023, the postdoc will be based and employed by the Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies (KITLV) closely collaborating with the University of St. Martin and University of the Virgin Islands (UVI), while conducting research-related visits to other countries and territories of the Caribbean part of the Kingdom.


Based upon their research findings, the Postdoc working directly with the PhD researcher and PL, will contribute to developing a co-creative approach that will encourage and advance a transformative policy roadmap enabling the island(er)s to improve their social adaptability to climate change challenges. This will be done by organising inter-island focus groups consisting of government organisations (GOs), non-government organisation (NGOs) and grassroots organisations on St. Maarten, St. Eustatius, and Saba in order to establish guiding conceptual frameworks and identify best practices supporting climate policy development in relation to island specific Water Food Shelter (WFS) nexuses. Special attention should be given to the challenges that the varying land policy regimes may pose to (collective) social adaptation to climate change. An inquiry into best practices in the wider Dutch Kingdom and neighbouring islands should also be taken into consideration. 


The applicant:

  • Has research experience in the field of political science, political anthropology, political sociology, or policy studies in the Caribbean;
  • Has successfully completed a PhD thesis in one of these fields no later than July 2023;
  • Is able to communicate fluently in English, and read Dutch; 
  • Is recommended to have a working knowledge of Papiamento, Spanish and/or French; 
  • Preferably has experience working in a multi-disciplinary team and has affinity with trans-disciplinary approaches and/or new research methods.


For additional information you may contact the Program Chair of the project, Dr. Francio Guadeloupe (Guadeloupe[at], and the President of USM, Prof. Dr. Antonio Carmona-Baéz via President[at]


Candidates are invited to submit their application in English or Dutch. Applications must include, in a single PDF file:

•    A cover letter.
•    A two-page research proposal.
•    A full curriculum vitae.
•    Two letters of recommendation.


The deadline for submitting your application is 1 October 2023. Please submit your application via the Apply Now button, you can address the application to the Program Chair, Dr. F.E. Guadeloupe (do not email him your application).

We would like to schedule the interviews in the first half of October 2023, starting employment preferably in January 2024.



About the KITLV
The Royal Netherlands Institute of Southeast Asian and Caribbean Studies (KITLV-KNAW) is an Academy research institute. The KITLV conducts interdisciplinary and comparative historical research. Its research focus is Southeast Asia and the Caribbean, with an emphasis on Indonesia and the ‘Dutch’ Caribbean. It is particularly interested in such issues as state formation, violence and citizenship, processes of mobility and the formation of ethnic and national identity. KITLV is active in the humanities, social sciences and comparative area studies and works closely with Leiden University.


Terms of employment
Depending on education and experience the minimum salary is € 3,539 and the maximum salary is € 3,877 gross per month for a full-time appointment (scale 10 cao Nederlandse Universiteiten/KNAW). This is exclusive of 8% vacation allowance, 8.3% year-end bonus, travel allowance, internet allowance, home working allowance and pension accrual with ABP.

The KNAW offers its staff an excellent package of secondary benefits. A package that meets the different needs of employees depending on their stage of life, lifestyle or career ambitions. For example, by working an extra two hours a week, it is possible to increase the number of days off from 29 to 41 days a year (with full-time employment).


For a complete overview of the terms of employment, please refer to the web page: werken bij de KNAW.


Diversity & Inclusion
The KNAW and KITLV consider a working environment in which everyone feels welcome and appreciated of great importance. A working environment in which attention is paid to individual quality and where development opportunities are paramount. Together we strive for an inclusive culture in which we embrace differences. We would therefore like to invite candidates who want to contribute to this through their background and experience. In the event of equal suitability, preference will be given to the candidate who thus enhances diversity within the Academy.


We will not respond to any supplier enquiries based on this job advertisement.