AI, Media & Democracy Lab – 3 Postdoctoral Researchers

Faculteit/Dienst:  Faculteit der Rechtsgeleerdheid

Opleidingsniveau:  Universiteit

Functie type:  Wetenschappelijk Personeel

Sluitingsdatum:  13 June 2022

Vacaturenummer:  9059


Do you want to help us to set up the AI, Media & Democracy Lab?

We are looking for 3 postdoctoral researchers:

  • a postdoctoral researcher in information law;
  • a postdoctoral researcher communication scientist;
  • a postdoctoral researcher AI, data science or computational social sciences.

The AI, Media and Democracy ELSA Lab’s aim is to set up an experimental space and testbed for novel ways of applying AI in the media. Journalists, media professionals, designers, citizens, researchers and public and societal partners bring in their challenges in using AI in the media. The lab investigates how AI-driven applications in the media change the public sphere, civic engagement and economic competition. We will develop and test new AI-applications to help solve problems such as disinformation, algorithmic bias and filter bubbles. Together with our partners we will also (co)-create new ethical and legal frameworks for responsible uses of AI that align with fundamental rights, public values and the European regulatory framework.

For the legal position, we are looking for a postdoc who will help us to critically assess the emerging regulatory framework for AI and digital platforms from the perspective of media organisations, journalism and citizens, identify and address emerging legal challenges. You will also help to develop guidelines for the responsible use of AI in the media and actively work together with the other 5(interdisciplinary) members of the lab and the media partners to solve legal questions that arise from the concrete case studies.

For the communication science position, we are looking for a postdoc to investigate how the introduction of AI is changing the relationship between media, users & AI and the effects for democratic engagement. How can AI-driven applications be designed in a way to earn peoples trust and acceptance, solve problems such as disinformation, but also how AI-driven applications can create new user experiences, e.g. through linked data, virtual assistants etc?

For the AI, data science / computational social science position, we are looking for a postdoc to work with media partners across different use cases, co-develop projects and solutions with partners, and work closely with the legal and communication postdocs to create joint projects, applications, and articles.


What are you going to do


  • Develop, conduct, and publish research on media and AI and present on (inter)national conferences;
  • Contribute to the pulic debate and organise outreach activitites of the Lab;
  • Contribute to the overall Lab in terms of events, research meetings, activities;
  • Contribute to new grant applications;
  • Collaborate with other postdocs and faculty members within and between the faculties at the University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences and CWI;
  • Give guest-lectures in the area of your expertise at BA or MA level at the University of Amsterdam;
  • Help co-supervising research projects of students working on lab-related topics.


What do we require

Furthermore you:

  • Have a clear research interest in the topic of the project (documented by publications and grant applications);
  • An excellent written and spoken command of English, as demonstrated by publications in English-language journals (written and spoken command of other languages, including French, German and/or Dutch is a plus);
  • The ability, willingness, and commitment to do autonomous work in a multidisciplinary team that includes legal scholars, communication scholars, ethici and data scientists;
  • Experience with organising workshops, lecture series, and similar events;
  • A relevant PhD degree ((1) law, (2) communication or social science, (3) AI, data science or computational social science. Candidates who are due to submit their dissertation before 1 October 2022 are welcome to apply.


Our offer

We offer a temporary part-time or full-time contract (32 – 38 hours) for the period of 2 years. Preferred starting date is 1 September 2022. The gross monthly salary based on full-time employment (38 hours per week) ranges from €3,821 up to a maximum of €5,230 (salary scale 11). This is exclusive 8% holiday allowance and 8,3% end-of-year bonus. The starting salary will be based on qualifications, expertise and relevant experience. The profile Researcher 3 is applicable in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities (CAO NU).

The UvA offers excellent possibilities for further professional development and education.

What else do we offer

  • a position where own initiative and input are highly valued;
  • the ability to have an active part in setting up and shaping this new research center/initiative;
  • an enthusiastic and dynamic team that is open to new colleagues;
  • an inspiring academic and international working environment in the heart of Amsterdam.

About the faculty/service unite/department/institute

The AI, Media & Democracy Lab is a collaboration between the UvA’s research teams Human(e) AI and ICDS (Information, Communication and the Data Society), the CWI’s research groups Human-Centered Data AnalyticsDistributed and Interactive Systems and Intelligent and Autonomous Systems and the HvA lectorates Responsible ITCivic Interaction DesignCrossmedia, and Visual Methodologies.

The AI, Media & Democracy Lab focuses on how AI and digital technology are transforming media and democracy. The researchers will tackle specific issues surrounding the use of AI in the media, such as ways to develop more people-oriented and diverse recommender systems, or the possible role of chatbots in news provision. In addition, they and the various partners in the lab will think about what the media of tomorrow should look like.

For more information about the lab, please find the website of the AI, Media and Democracy Lab here.

The postdoctoral researcher will be part of the Amsterdam Law School and/or Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences.
To work at the University of Amsterdam is to work in a discerning, independent, creative, innovative and international climate characterized by an open atmosphere and a genuine engagement with the city of Amsterdam and society. Here you can read more about working at the University of Amsterdam.


Do you have any questions or do you require additional information? Please contact:

Job application

Do you recognize yourself in the job profile? Then we are looking forward to receiving your cv and cover letter by 13 June 2022. Please provide, in your application, a link to one of your research papers which is most representative of your work and relevant for this application. We also ask you to provide the names of two researchers who can provide a letter of reference for your application. You can apply online by using the link below.

Applications in .pdf should include:

  • a curriculum vitae;
  • a letter of motivation;
  • any other required information.

We will invite potential candidates for interviews within 2 weeks after the closing date. Interviews will take place on Thursday 7 July 2022.


The UvA is an equal-opportunity employer. We prioritise diversity and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for everyone. We value a spirit of enquiry and perseverance, provide the space to keep asking questions, and promote a culture of curiosity and creativity.


If you encounter Error GBB451, reach out to our HR Department directly. They will gladly help you continue your application. 

No agencies please

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