Now officially open: PhD positions on leverage points for sustainability

Please help distribute this widely — we have too few expressions of interest so far!

Applications are now officially open for 8 Leverage Points PhD Positions (start date ideally October 2015). The application deadline for all eight positions is 30th of June 2015. These are 3-year positions for scholars to complete their PhDs at Leuphana (standard time in Germany; coursework is minimal).

A pdf of this overview is available here.  Please help to distribute this widely! Thanks you!

PhD1: Institutional dynamics in sustainability transformation (RESTRUCTURE: Policy and Governance)
Principal supervisors: Prof. Dr. Jens Newig, Prof. Dr. Thomas Schomerus

This position focuses on processes of institutional change for restructuring food and energy systems. RESTRUCTURE will address dynamics (transformations) in institutional arrangements. Social structures embodied in institutions (rules, regu-lations and policies) enable, constrain and guide human action and thus are of central concern to sustainability transfor-mations. Different from most existing research, Leverage Points will not only consider institutional innovation and ‘success-ful’ institutional arrangements, but will specifically investigate what can be learnt from institutional failure, and assess how purposeful institutional decline could foster sustainability.  More detailed information on this position is available here PhD1.

PhD2: Institutional dynamics in sustainability transformation, e.g. with special focus on energy or food/agriculture systems (RESTRUCTURE: Law and Governance)
Principal supervisors: Prof. Dr. Thomas Schomerus, Prof. Dr. Jens Newig

This position focuses on legal and policy analysis regarding food/agriculture and energy, and its dynamics in a multi-level institutional setting (case study regions, countries, EU). Tasks may include: systematic review and meta-analysis of productive functions of institutional failure and decline for sustainability transformation; study of institutional redundancies and inconsistencies within study regions; compare sustainability-relevant institutional change; study of the role of citizen and stakeholder participation in institutional change, i.e. regional resistance against renewable energy and citizen’s financial participation. More detailed information on this position is available here PhD2.

PhD3: Human-Nature Connections and Institutional Dynamics
Principal supervisors: Dr. Julia Leventon, Prof. Dr. Joern Fischer

This position has a primary focus on conceptualising and quantifying human-nature connections and how changes in such connections relate to sustainability outcomes, in food and energy systems in Lower Saxony (DE) and Transylvania (RO). In addition, the position links to considerations of institutional change for restructuring food and energy systems and will address dynamics (transformations) in institutional arrangements. Social structures embodied in institutions (rules, regulations and policies) enable, constrain and guide human action and thus are of central concern to sustainability transformations. This position will consider how institutions reflect connections, and the implications for guiding human action. More detailed information on this position is available here PhD3.

PhD4: Conceptualising and quantifying human-nature connections (conceptualization)
Principal supervisors: Dr. Dave Abson, Dr. Julia Leventon

This position focuses on conceptualising human-nature connections and how changes in such connections relate to sustainability outcomes, in food and energy systems in Lower Saxony (DE) and Transylvania (RO). This will involve the conceptualisation and quantification of actors’ aspirations and appreciation of local ecosystems; consumer choices in obtaining energy and food; and how behaviour, attitudes and knowledge influence individuals ‘connectedness’ to their environments. More detailed information on this position is available here PhD4.

PhD5: Conceptualising and quantifying human-nature connections (quantification)
Principal supervisors: Prof. Dr. Henrik von Wehrden, Dr. Dave Abson

This position focuses on quantifying human-nature connections and how changes in such connections relate to sustainability outcomes, in food and energy systems in Lower Saxony (DE) and Transylvania (RO).Tasks and responsibilities may include: the creation of a literature review of the connections between people and ecosystems and quantifying ecosystem service flows within the empirical study regions. More detailed information on this position is available here PhD5.

PhD6: Sustainability-related knowledge creation and use (opportunities for change)
Principal supervisors: Prof. Dr. Daniel Lang, Prof. Dr. Ulli Vilsmaier

This position focuses on consolidating and further developing conceptual foundations related to new forms of knowledge production and use, and will apply these to local transdisciplinary case studies. The themes of the case studies will revolve around the food and energy systems in Lower Saxony (DE) and Transylvania (RO). Tasks and responsibilities may include: Systematic review of the (types of) knowledge needed for regional sustainability transformations; review of existing knowledge and experiences related to designs and opportunities of different forms of knowledge production to foster sustainability transformation; empirical analysis in how and how far knowledge and experience gained in specific contexts can be transferred between regions and themes and contribution to the organization and management of one of the transdisciplinary case studies. More detailed information on this position is available here PhD6.

PhD7: Sustainability-related knowledge creation and use (sustainability conceptualization and opportunities for change)
Principal supervisors: Prof. Dr. Daniel Lang, Prof. Dr. Henrik von Wehrden

This position focuses on consolidating conceptual foundations related to new forms of knowledge production and use, and will apply and investigate these in local transdisciplinary case studies. The themes of the case studies will revolve around the food and energy systems in Lower Saxony (DE) and Transylvania (RO). Tasks and responsibilities may include: Reviewing the state of sustainability related knowledge production and use in the study regions; analysis of sustainability conceptualisations in different contexts in the specific case study regions; identification and design of opportunities for creating new forms of knowledge production and use for regional change; and contribution to the organization and management of a transdisciplinary case study. More detailed information on this position is available here PhD7.

PhD 8: Inter- and transdisciplinary Knowledge Creation in Action
Principal supervisors: Prof. Dr. Ulli Vilsmaier, Prof. Dr. Daniel Lang

This position will analyse the processes of knowledge production in the inter- and transdisciplinary research processes in Leverage Points. It will generate a more profound understanding of integrating different epistemics, life worlds and objectives, in particular in transdisciplinary sustainability science, and transdisciplinary case studies. The cooperative team of Leverage Points and the two transdisciplinary cases studies in Lower Saxony/Germany and Transylvania/Romania will serve as principal research space. More detailed information on this position is available here PhD8.

To apply

The official job adverts for all eight positions and details of how to apply can be found at http://www.leuphana.de/bewerben/jobs-und-karriere/forschung-lehre.html

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