PhD_position: Moral Emotions & Risk Politics

This position has been filled .
This PhD-project is part of a larger project on Moral Emotions and Risk Politics, a so-called VIDI-project for innovational research, sponsored by NWO (the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research). Project leader is dr Sabine Roeser (
Emotions have often been met with suspicion in political debates about risky technologies, because they are seen as contrary to rational decision making. However, the guiding idea behind this project is that moral emotions are necessary in order to judge ethical aspects of technological risks, such as justice, fairness and autonomy.
The PhD-student will compare various policy making approaches concerning risky technologies and assess the extent to which they do or are able to incorporate moral emotions.
The PhD-project will consist of three parts: 1. A literature study to gain an overview of existing approaches of political decision making about risk and the (possible) role of emotions in these approaches; 2. Two case studies of models of political decision making about risk: participatory technology assessment and public debates, and representative democracy; 3. An evaluation as to the extent to which moral emotions do or could play a role in these models.
The selected PhD student will be employed at the vibrant Philosophy Department within the Faculty of Policy, Technology and Management at Delft University of Technology. S/he will be a member of the 3TU.Centre for Ethics and Technology (, one of the six centres of excellence of the three Dutch universities of technology.


Applicants should be highly motivated to conduct innovative research at the cross-roads of philosophy, political science and psychology. They should have a Master’s degree in political philosophy and/or political science, or in another discipline directly relevant to this project.

Conditions of employment

TU Delft offers an attractive benefits package, including a flexible work week, free high-speed Internet access from home, and the option of assembling a customised compensation and benefits package (the ‘IKA’). Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities.

Working hours: 38 uur per week
Contract: Four years
Salary: €2,042 to €2,612 per month gross

Information and application

For more formal details about this position, please visit the vacancy website.
For more information about the project, please contact dr. Sabine Roeser, email: {encode=”” title=””}
To apply for this position, please submit the following documents attached to your e-mail to {encode=”” title=””}:

1. complete CV,
2. a writing sample, for example your Master’s thesis, or an article or essay that you consider representative of your work,
3. a letter of motivation
4. two academic letters of reference.

We would prefer to receive the documents listed above in PDF format. If this is not possible, please send them in MS Word format. Please refer to vacancy number ATTBM10-012.
The applications deadline is 30 September 2010.

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