How to apply for a PhD position?

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Thank you for your interest in my research and in the PhD program at the AISSR of the University of Amsterdam. I am always interested in working with new PhD students. If you would like to work with me, please follow this protocol.

How to apply?

It starts with thinking.

  • First, you need to think about me as your supervisor. Am I the right guy? My research is motivated by an interest in understanding the political economy of various forms of urban diversity. I started in the field of migration and integration studies -- notably migrant entrepreneurship -- but I have gradually moved to urban studies per se. My current research revolves around the development of nw middle classes, urban amenities and cultural consumption -- such as coffee bars, craft beer breweries, hot bakeries, chocolate architects, olive oil specialists, ‘ethnic’ home decoration stores, street food treks, etc. -- and the concomitant proliferation of urban identities, life styles and the urban commons. Also, my methods are more qualitatively oriented rather than quantitative. Please see my bio and the list of research projects and publications for more details.
  • Secondly, you need to think about yourself. Do you have the brains, the ambitions and the right character to pursue a PhD trajectory? Did you belong to the top ten percent of your class? I expect a great deal of independence from my graduate students (but make every effort to be available for advice). I encourage students to pursue their own research questions within the realm of my interests, but also to be diligent, well-organized, and disciplined (also in terms of time management).
  • Thirdly, you need to think about funding. The University of Amsterdam does not provide scholarships for your PhD trajectory. Most of my students, however, have been successful in obtaining their own funding through fellowships, grants and loans. I am also open to Joint PhD Programs, together with colleagues from other universities.

The supervision always involve two, but occasionally three supervisors. Apart from face-to-face meetings with the supervisors, my PhD students are expected to take active part in the PhD Lab, i.e. a series of joint meetings of all PhD students of mine with me, as well in a wide array of meetings and seminars organized by the UvA's Department of Sociology, its Program Group Political Sociology and multidisciplinary centers, notably the Center for Urban Studies (CUS) and the Institute for Migration and Ethnic Studies (IMES).

What to do?

If you are still interested in joining the PhD program under my supervision, first check check this, and if you think you qualify send me an email. To be sure, your application will eventually be decided by the Admissions Committee, thus not just by me. The following are just the first steps to explore whether or not your plans are feasible and whether or not I could and want to act as your supervisor. So, I ask that you send me an email with the following information:

  • a short statement of motivation: why you are interested in the AISSR PhD program at UvA and working with me in particular? Also say a few words about your ultimate career goals;
  • a description of your academic and work background, with particular reference to your transcripts (attach a copy) and your past independent research experience;
  • a summary of your research plan in, say, two or three pages max. covering the social relevance of the project, the social-scientific puzzle you want to address, your theoretical argument, your research methods, and your planning;
  • a short statement about funding.

You are welcome to contact me, also if you need more information.

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