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Post-Doctoral Researcher in Political Economy

Research / Academic
Leiden

The post-doctoral researcher will be part of the project “The Micro-foundations of Debt Crises” hosted at the Institute of Political Science at Leiden University. The project is funded by the European Research Council (ERC) and led by Dr. Matthew DiGiuseppe. The post-doc will work closely with the PI to field surveys and survey experiments, collect observational data, write research papers and help in the mentorship of the project’s PhD students.

This project takes a bottom-up approach to understanding the political roots of government debt crises. It proposes that in order to understand why governments borrow excessively and experience crises, we must first understand what citizens are thinking (or not thinking) about debt policy. Citizens’ preferences are the cornerstone of political theories because they inform policymakers’ incentives. Yet, no studies have systematically examined why citizens in some countries are willing to take steps before a crisis to reduce government debt while others ignore warnings and reward political inaction.

This project pursues two successive objectives. First, the project will conduct the first comprehensive analysis of individual-level preferences for debt reduction before a crisis. It will develop and test multiple hypotheses that seek to explain which elements of society are (un)supportive of debt reduction policies, what rational or irrational factors motivate their decisions, and how stable these preferences are to manipulation by elites. The analysis centers around original and innovative multi-country survey experiments that elicit the character and stability of preferences for debt reduction. The project’s second phase uses these insights to connect the micro to the macro. By understanding which groups of citizens are motivated by which material factors or cognitive biases, we will develop new theories explaining how the distribution of these groups, and their interaction with institutions, influence political decisions and ultimately affect the risk of sovereign debt crises.

Key responsibilities

The post-doctoral researcher will be part of the project “The Micro-foundations of Debt Crises” hosted at the Institute of Political Science at Leiden University. The project is funded by the European Research Council (ERC) and led by Dr. Matthew DiGiuseppe. The Post-doc will work closely with the PI to field surveys and survey experiments, collect observational data, write research papers and help in the mentorship of the project’s PhD students.

Requirements:

  • A PhD in political science or in a relevant discipline, or be near completing one;
  • Very strong background in quantitative methods. Experience with survey design and survey experiments is preferable but not necessary;
  • Substantive interest in the political economy of sovereign debt, international/comparative political economy, public opinion or political behavior;
  • Excellent command of English. Italian, Portuguese, or Japanese language skills are a plus.

Salary Benefits:

We offer a fixed-term position of 3 years. The position preferably starts on 1 August 2020. Salary range from €3,637.- to €4,978.- gross per month on a full-time basis (pay scale 11, in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities).

Leiden University offers an attractive benefits package with additional holiday (8%) and end-of-year bonuses (8.3 %), training and career development. Our individual choices model gives you some freedom to assemble your own set of terms and conditions. For international spouses we have set up a dual career programme. 

Work Hours:

36 - 38 hours per week

Address:

Wassenaarseweg 52