Netherlands: Post Doctoral Research Position in Psychology at University of Twente

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Job description

The Department of Psychology of Conflict, Risk & Safety, University of Twente, invites outstanding candidates to apply for a Postdoc/research associate position on cross-cultural differences in the effectiveness of strategies for educing information. The project is part of a close collaboration with The Investigative Expertise Unit at Lancaster University (headed by prof.dr. Paul Taylor) where also another research associate will be appointed. The work in Twente will be done under the guidance of prof.dr. Ellen Giebels.

The Challenge
The cultural diversity of the suspects encountered by law enforcement interrogators, has grown dramatically over the last decade. This diversity means that interrogators are encountering interpersonal styles and ways of doing business‘ that are very different from their own. Handling this can be a challenge, not least because the established ways of gaining cooperation from Western suspects are not always as effective when used with suspects from other cultures. Interrogators thus need an evidence-base for understanding how best to conduct effective cross-cultural interactions.

The program of work will fulfil the following objectives:
1) To establish the relative effectiveness of key influence tactics with suspects who are high/low on individualism-collectivism and uncertainty-avoidance
2) To establish the nature of strategic framing in cross-cultural interactions and the interviewer strategies that facilitate effective framing

To achieve these objectives the research associate will – together with a team from Twente and Lancaster University – content analyze the utterances of police and suspect dialogue in four data sets. The first two data sets involve recordings of  Dutch-German and UK training simulations. The third and fourth data sets are recordings of actual crisis negotiations in the Netherlands and UK. Main tasks: coding, analyzing and reporting of the results (also in academic journals).


Criteria Essential/ Desirable A thorough understanding of psychological research techniques, including quantitative statistical analysis Essential MSc (or equivalent) in psychology, or related discipline Essential Excellent writing skills, including experience of writing research reports Essential Ability to self-motivate, organise own time flexibly, manage workloads, and work to deadlines Essential Excellent communication skills, mastering both oral and written English fluently Essential Expertise in analyzing conflict interactions and/ or (cross/inter) cultural interactions   Desirable Experience of working with organizations Desirable Experience of presenting and publishing research Desirable Experience of textual analysis, such as content analysis or natural language processing Desirable PhD (or equivalent) in psychology or related discipline Desirable An interest in developing the research beyond the life of the initial project through, for example, applying for further research funding DesirableInformation and application
The principle investigators will shortlist a maximum of 6 candidates. These candidates are invited for a job interview on Tuesday, September 17, 2013.

Applications (in English only) should include your CV, list of grades, and an application letter. Applicants are asked to provide a statement to demonstrate how they meet the criteria as well as a motivation why you want to work on this project. All documents can be submitted by following the button “Klik hier om te solliciteren” below.
We will not consider incomplete or mass-mailed applications.
The application deadline is September 15, 2013.

If you have questions concerning the position, please contact Prof. Dr. Ellen Giebels (

Conditions of employment

We offer a challenging position in an inspiring, multidisciplinary and international environment. As a research associate you will be offered a full-time (38 hours/week) position for one year (scale 10; including a holiday allowance (8%), an end-year bonus (8.3% of the annual salary) and a number of additional benefits).


The University of Twente. We stand for life sciences and technology. High tech and human touch. Education and research that matter. New technology which drives change, innovation and progress in society. The University of Twente is the only campus university in the Netherlands; divided over six faculties we provide more than fifty educational programmes. The University of Twente has a strong focus on personal development and talented researchers are given scope for carrying out pioneering research.

In the Behavioural Sciences faculty bachelor’s and master’s programmes are provided in the area of educational science, communication science and psychology. The research in the faculty is divided over varying themes such as Safety and Health, Labour and Organisation, Knowledege and Education, and Technology and Media. For example, a study is conducted into the influence of the interior on the wellbeing of patients. Another study follows the users of wikipedia in order to find out how they use this. The study is largely accommodated with the research institute, Institute of behavioural Research (IBR).

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