DEEPEN Early Career Fellowship

Early career fellowship “Democratic governance of funded pension schemes”

Institute of Public Administration, Leiden University

Call for applications

We invite early career researchers to apply for a short-term research stay (6-8 months) at the Institute of Public Administration at Leiden University. This position is made possible by the NORFACE-funded research project ‘Democratic Governance of Funded Pensions’ (DEEPEN). The project explores the democratic governance of capital-funded occupational pension schemes and investigates how governments, regulators and labor market actors govern funded pensions and whether participants are satisfied with pension fund performance. The project focuses on Denmark, the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Ireland and Spain. The project combines quantitative analysis of survey data with comparative case studies based on elite and expert interviews and analysis of primary and secondary documents.

The early career researcher will be part of the DEEPEN research team, led by Dr. Natascha van der Zwan. Other research teams are based in Austria, Ireland and Spain. The researcher is invited to pursue their own research agenda, provided this research agenda speaks to the DEEPEN project’s main themes and/or approaches. While at the Institute of Public Administration, the researcher is expected to develop a co-authored paper with one of the DEEPEN team members and to actively take part in project meetings. The researcher is also expected to actively contribute to the political economy research group, in which the DEEPEN team is embedded, and to other academic activities within the Institute of Public Administration.

Eligible candidates are advanced PhD students or postdocs who obtained their PhD degrees within the last 2 years. We welcome applications from across the social sciences, as long as the proposed research offers the potential for a mutually beneficial exchange with the DEEPEN project.

Terms and conditions

We offer a 6-8 months salaried position (1,0 fte) with benefits and a travel fund. Starting date of the position is February 1, 2023 or soon thereafter. The appointment will be under the terms of the Collective Labour Agreement (CAO) of Dutch Universities. The salary, depending on qualifications and experience, varies from € 2.960,- to € 4.257 gross per month (pay scale 10-11) in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities. Information with respect to conditions of employment of the University can be found on

Leiden University is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from members of underrepresented groups. 


Enquiries can be made to Dr. Natascha van der Zwan, email  


Applications should include:

  • A cover letter (2 pages max.) explaining motivations to apply and the desired length of the fellowship;
  • Curriculum Vitae including a list of publications;
  • A research statement (2 pages max.) describing the candidate’s research agenda as well as prior and ongoing research;
  • A brief proposal (1 page max.) for a possible co-authored paper with a DEEPEN team member, based on mutual research interests.

Deadline for applications is December 23, 2022. Applications can be send to