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Post-Doctoral Research Fellow in Political Science

University of Gothenburg - Varieties of Democracy Institute

The University of Gothenburg tackles society’s challenges with diverse knowledge. 53 500 students and 6 500 employees make the university a large and inspiring place to work and study. Strong research and attractive study programmes attract scientists and students from around the world. With new knowledge and new perspectives, the University contributes to a better future.

The Department of Political Science seeks to encourage an open exchange of minds in academic debates, and scholar’s participation in the public sphere. Research areas of specialization include elections, democracy, corruption, governance, globalization, environmental politics as well as European studies. The department hosts research programs such as the QoG institute, the Varieties of Democracy (V-Dem) Institute, Governance and local development (GLD) and the Swedish Election Studies program. The department offers education on all levels; undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate, carried out in both English and Swedish. 1,400 students are enrolled in our courses; we have over 160 people employed. The department is centrally located in the city of Gothenburg.

Varieties of Democracy (V-Dem) is a large-scale, international data collection and research-program. The V-Dem Institute, Directed by Professor Staffan I. Lindberg, has received several large-scale grants from among others the European Commission, several ministries of foreign affairs, Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, the Swedish Research Council, Marcus & Marianne Foundation, and Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation. For more information:

Job assignments

The Research fellow is primarily expected to conduct team-based research on the main questions of the research programs at the V-Dem Institute: Endangered Democracies: Sequences of Autocratization (EDSA) and/or "Failing and Successful Sequences of Democratization" (FASDEM), in collaboration with the PI and the team members in these programs. Applicants can read about these projects and download various documentation from under “Our Work/Research Projects”. V-Dem data is used in the research for both these projects.

One of V-Dem’s strengths is the flexibility and collaborative spirit of everyone at the institute, focusing on reaching the goals of the data collection and research program. This includes a willingness to contribute to coding of data, quality control and/or data management during peak periods. Outreach and collaboration with institutions in society may also be part of the job.

For this position, the service component is expected to focus on further development and issue solving with regards to the measures and methods studying democratization and/or autocratization, substantive research on causes and effects of those two phenomenon, and outreach to policy makers/practitioners. The Postdoctoral Research Fellow may also be asked to perform service and support functions for the Institute’s other activities up to one-third of full-time employment (FTE).


The Post-Doctoral Research Fellow position is open to candidates who (upon assuming the position) have a PhD in political science or related field. 


Applications will be evaluated primarily on research excellence in comparative politics with a focus on areas of relevance to one of the projects listed above. Research at high international level in the field of comparative democratization, autocratization, regime breakdown, authoritarian regimes, and/or political development is required. Excellent English (orally and written) is required.

Candidates must have a strong record in one or more of the following areas:

  • Explicit interest in further extending on the research agenda of the FASDEM program; or solving the scientific problems identified in the EDSA project, with demonstrated abilities to provide original, state-of-the-art, and creative solutions to such research problems.
  • Strong competence in advanced time-series, cross-sectional regression techniques, Vector Auto-Regression (VAR), sequencing algorithms, optimal matching methods, Monte Carlo chains, and/or Dynamic treatment regimes.
  • Expertise in data science, methods, and management including advanced experience in R programming, maintaining R-packages, using and programming PostgreSQL and experience with statistical modelling using JAGS and Stan. 

Advantageous criteria include:

  • Prior use of V-Dem data in applied research or similar evidence of familiarity with the project.
  • Demonstrated resourcefulness, flexibility, and very good ability to do teamwork in different configurations.
  • Experience working collaboratively on a large-scale research project.
  • Documented experience of outreach, especially translating and communicating research to policy-makers/practitioners. 

We will make an overall assessment of the applicants’ qualifications and select one or more judged to complement the rest of the team in the best way possible for the needs of the research programs. Personal qualities and team-working skills are highly relevant for the position and are of great importance.


Type of employment: Fixed-term employment, 24 months, full time in residence.
Extent: 100 %

Location: V-Dem Institute, Department of Political Science, Gothenburg, Sweden
Employment: Starting as soon as possible, or latest by 2022-09-01 

Appointment procedure

Please apply online

Applicants are expected to visit and read program documents. The application should clearly relate to the FASDEM program, or if applying for the Special Profile then the R programming skills and software experience required for the respective position.

The letter of application should include a self-evaluation of how the applicant’s proposed research agenda would contribute to the FASDEM research program, and how the applicant meets the requirements above.

Attach to the application: a CV, a citation count from Google scholar (including H-index), and one writing sample. The application should also include a list of at least three references from whom letters of recommendation can be solicited.

Supplementary documents which cannot be emailed should be sent to the following address:

University of Gothenburg
Department of Political Science

Box 711
SE-405 30 Gothenburg Sweden

Reference number, PAR 2021/1188 should be clearly stated when sending supplementary documents.

For further information regarding the position

Staffan I Lindberg, Professor, Director & Principal Investigator
+46 31 786 1226


Union representatives at the University of Gothenburg:

Information for International Applicants

Choosing a career in a foreign country is a big step. Thus, to give you a general idea of what we and Gothenburg have to offer in terms of benefits and life in general for you and your family/spouse/partner please visit:

How to apply

In order to apply for a position at the University of Gothenburg, you have to register an account in our online recruitment system. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that the application is complete in accordance with the instructions in the job advertisement, and that it is submitted before the deadline. The selection of candidates is made on the basis of the qualifications registered in the application.

Closing date: December 17, 2021.  

The University of Gothenburg promotes equal opportunities, equality and diversity.

Salary is determined on an individual basis.

Applications will be destroyed or returned (upon request) two years after the decision of employment has become final. Applications from the employed and from those who appeal the decision will not be returned. 

In connection to this recruitment, we have already decided which recruitment channels we should use. We therefore decline further contact with vendors, recruitment and staffing companies.

Location: Gothenburg - Sweden
Salary: Not Specified
Hours: Full Time
Contract Type: Fixed-Term/Contract
Placed On: 10th November 2021
Closes: 17th December 2021
Job Ref: PAR 2021/1188
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