LOGO Meertens

The Meertens Instituut is a research institute of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences, focusing on research and documentation of Dutch language and culture. The Department of Variation Linguistics at the Meertens Institute offers a PhD position in phonology, as part of the programme “The Life Cycle of Liquids”, an internal research project at the Meertens Instituut. This programme studies different aspects of ongoing and past changes in the behaviour of the Dutch liquids /l/ and /r/, and does so in a perspective which combines phonological theory, sociolinguistics and phonetics or experimental linguistics. (A more complete description of the project can be found on the website.)

The PhD project will concentrate on the question what is the phonetic substance that phonological primes (features, elements) refer to, e.g. whether it is articulatory or acoustic in nature, or rather ‘substance-free’; whether it is exemplar-based or more abstract, etc. The PhD will collect experimental data from Dutch speakers in different regions and will try to assess them within the framework of modern phonological theory and sociolinguistics.

The PhD project includes writing a dissertation within a maximum position duration of 3.5 years. It also involves research training, such as graduate courses offered by the Dutch National Graduate School in Linguistics (LOT).

Applicants should have:

  • A Master’s degree (or equivalent) in linguistics, phonetics, sociolinguistics or a related field
  • Demonstrable knowledge in at least one of the following areas: prosody, phonetics, phonology, sociolinguistics, experimental linguistics; knowledge in more than one of these areas is highly desirable; interest in all of them is essential.
  • Excellent command of English, both spoken and written
  • High proficiency in Dutch, or willingness to acquire this very fast
  • The ability to quickly learn the use of experimental methods (e.g. involving ultrasound) and new methods of data analysis
  • The willingness to work in a closely collaborating team
  • The ambition to pursue an academic career in an internationally oriented scientific community

Work conditions:
We offer a full-time PhD-position (38 hours/week) for 3,5 years (preferred starting date: April 2012). The starting salary will be € 2042,- gross per month in the first year up to € 2612,- gross per month in the last year. Favorable conditions of employment include holiday allowance and flexible working hours. Also, there will be opportunities to visit national and international conferences and workshops, summer schools etc.

How to apply
Applications should include:

  • CV (including contact and personal details)
  • a letter of motivation
  • academic transcript
  • a sample of written work (e.g. a copy of the MA thesis, a term paper, or a published article)
  • contact details of two referees (names, affiliations, phone numbers, and e-mail addresses)
  • two reference letters (optional)

Job interviews, live or Skype, are expected to take place in the first week of March.

Additional information
Prof. Dr. Marc van Oostendorp

Prof. Dr. Frans Hinskens

Please send in your application before 12 February 2012 to Marcia Lucassen (marcia.lucassen@meertens.knaw.nl).

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