LEDIG STILLING VED UNIVERSITETET I BERGEN

Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the ERC-project QUANTA

Deadline: 15.02.2021

University of Bergen

The University of Bergen is a renowned educational and research institution, organised into seven faculties and approximately 54 institutes and academic centres. Campus is located in the centre of Bergen with university areas at Nygårdshøyden, Haukeland, Marineholmen, Møllendalsveien and Årstad.


There are five departments and two centres at Faculty of Psychology. Read more about the faculty and departments.

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Postdoctoral Research Fellow position

There is a vacancy for a postdoctoral research fellow position at the Department of Psychosocial Science, Faculty of Psychology, University of Bergen (UiB). The position is for a fixed-term period of 3 years and is associated with the project "Evolution of Cognitive Tools for Quantification (QUANTA)", funded by the European Research Council with a Synergy Grant to Andrea Bender (UiB), Francesco d’Errico (CNRS Bordeaux), Russell Gray (MPI for Evolutionary Anthropology, Leipzig), and Rafael Núñez (UCSD).

About the project/work tasks:

  • Quanta aims at reconstructing the origin and evolution of numeral systems: when and why they were invented, and how and why they diversified. The 6-years project with starting date in Sep 2021 is located at four institutions: UiB, CNRS Bordeaux, MPI EVA Leipzig, and UCSD. These will engage in frequent and close collaboration and exchange, including internships for all researchers at the other institutions.
  • The Post-doc position will be part of the UiB unit, devoted to the categorization and representational analysis of numeral systems.
  • Main supervisor will be Prof. Dr. Andrea Bender (UiB); co-supervision by a member of one of the other teams depends on the specialization chosen by the candidate.

The Post-doc project will …

  • involve compilation of data on the cultural diversity of numeral systems, their cognitive implications, and the cultural contexts in which they are used
  • develop and test hypotheses on the origin of these systems and their co-evolution with cultural factors
  • contribute to the integration of diverse datasets and the development of an evolutionary model

Qualifications and personal qualities:

  • At the time of application, the applicant must have successfully defended the PhD in a cognitive or social science with a focus on cognition and/or cultural evolution, including psychology, linguistics, (cultural) anthropology, evolutionary biology, or a related field.
  • The applicant must have expertise in at least one of the following scientific methodologies; additional experience in a second one is desirable:
    • cognitive experiments and/or anthropological fieldwork, preferably including cross-cultural or cross-linguistic research methods
    • harvesting large-scale ethnographic databases
    • representational analysis
    • cognitive or computational modelling
    • phylogenetic comparative analyses with Bayesian computational tools
  • A potential to publish high-impact articles is required.
  • The applicant must be able to work independently and in a structured manner, yet must also have the ability to cooperate with others. It is especially advantageous to have had experience in cross-disciplinary collaboration.
  • High proficiency in both written and spoken English is required.
  • Broad scientific interest beyond the applicant’s own field is expected. Familiarity with research from the fields of culture and cognition, of cultural and cognitive evolution, or even of number systems will be considered an advantage (but is not required).

Personal and relational qualities will be emphasized. Research experience, ambitions, and potential will also count when evaluating the candidates.

About the position of postdoctoral research fellow:

The position of postdoctoral research fellow is a fixed-term appointment with the primary objective of qualifying the appointee for work in top academic positions. The fixed-term period for this position is 3 years. Individuals may not be hired for more than one fixed-term period as a postdoctoral research fellow at the same institution.

Upon appointment, applicants must submit a project proposal for the qualifying work including a work schedule. For postdoctoral research fellow positions associated with externally financed projects, the completion of the project proposal for the qualifying work will take place in consultation with the project/centre manager. It is a requirement that the project is completed in the course of the period of employment.

We can offer:

  • Exciting development opportunities as part of your role in a strong professional environment
  • Salary at pay grade 60 (code 1352 / pay range 24, alternative 4) according to the state salary scale upon appointment. This currently amounts to an annual salary of NOK 535 200 before taxes. Further promotions are made according to length of service. For particularly highly qualified applicants, a higher salary may be considered
  • Enrolment in the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund
  • Excellent welfare benefits

Your application must include:

  • A brief account (in English) of your research interests and motivation for applying for the position. This should include a paragraph each on how the qualification criteria described above are met, and how the research interests pertain to Quanta and the advertised position.
  • The names and contact information for two reference persons. One of these must be the main supervisor from the PhD programme.
  • CV (in English)
  • Transcripts and diplomas (higher education)
  • Relevant certificates
  • A list of any works of a scientific nature (publication list), if applicable.
  • Any publications in your name you want to be included in the evaluation of your application

Please note that applications, along with the information and attachments linked to the application in JobbNorge, will be evaluated after the closing date for applications. Attachments must be in English or a Scandinavian language, and any translations must be certified. It is your responsibility to ensure that all the necessary information has been submitted by the closing date for applications.

It is particularly important that each of the attachments that are to be taken into account in the assessment is uploaded in full as an attachment to your application.

General information:

Detailed information about the position can be obtained by contacting:

  • Andrea Bender, Department of Psychosocial Science, Faculty of Psychology, University of Bergen, [email protected]

The state labour force shall reflect the diversity of Norwegian society to the greatest extent possible. People with immigrant backgrounds, gap in their CV and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply for the position. Information about disabilities or gap in CV can be used for registration puposes at the University of Bergen.

The University of Bergen applies the principle of public access to information when recruiting staff for academic positions.

Information about applicants may be made public even if the applicant has asked not to be named on the list of persons who have applied. The applicant must be notified if the request to be omitted is not met.

Further information about our employment process can be found here.

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