The REI program concerns a collaboration between two research programs – Family, Work, and Welfare (FWW) – and Behavioral Approaches to Contract and Tort (BACT). FWW is part of the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences, BACT is part of the Erasmus School of Law. The postdoc will be stationed at BACT and participate in both research programs.


The postdoc researcher may choose to either execute the personal project “The Social-Regulation of Work Disability” (see the additional information below) or to come up with a personal project that fits neatly within the ambit of the REI program.

The post-doctoral position is designed for a scholar who has recently received his or her PhD or has set an approved date to graduate in order to:

  • execute the research project ‘The Social Regulation of Work Disability’ or come up with a personal research project that fits within the ambit of the REI program;

  • prepare a grant application for a follow-up research project (Veni NWO, ERC starting grant and/or grant applications from the third stream);

  • contribute to the joint publications of the research programs BACT and FWW;

  • involve societal partners in the project;

  • administrate the REI program ‘From Welfare to Social Investment’;

  • organize and attend meetings, workshops and conferences;

  • contribute to the research programs of BACT and FWW


We are looking for a post-doctoral candidate who has:

  • or is about to get a doctorate diploma showing proficiency in doing empirical research on law and policy (e.g. policy implementation research, welfare economics, comparative legal research, regulation and governance, or empirical legal studies);

  • strong methodological skills. The execution of the proposed project requires skills in multi-level analysis, collecting and coding qualitative data for quantitative analysis and in doing case studies;

  • publications in international journals;

  • management skills;

  • ambition, energy, and flexibility;

  • ability to produce work of excellent quality while under pressure;

  • a keen interest – and possibly experience – in multidisciplinary social science research on public and private policy/law, social security systems, social welfare, private law, regulation and governance, and/or the behavioral study of law.

Conditions of employment

The initial contract will be for one year (1.0 fte). If you have given sufficient proof of your abilities, the temporary contract will be renewed for another year. The work conditions are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities (CAO NU). The salary is subject to training and experience and corresponds to Scale 11 CAO NU, with a minimum of €3.400 and maximum of  €4.654 gross per month on a 38 hour per week contract.In accordance with the CAO NU a placement in a starting grade is possible for the maximum duration of two years.
The EUR has attractive employment conditions, which include a holiday allowance of 8.0%, an end-of-year bonus of 8.3% and 41 annual vacation days in case of a full workweek.  



[Erasmus University Rotterdam []

The expertise of Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR) is concentrated in the fields of Business Administration, Economics, Medicine and Health Sciences, Law, Social Sciences, History, Culture and Communication, and Philosophy. In addition to the initial degree programs and scientific research, the University offers specific postgraduate study programs and courses. Erasmus University Rotterdam has around 25,000 students and some 2,500 staff members.



The Faculty of Social Sciences is home to a vast diversity of scientific disciplines: public administration, pedagogical sciences, psychology and sociology. In addition, the Erasmus University College, IHS, and two research institutes RISBO and DRIFT are linked to the faculty. This also reflects in the content of the (international) bachelor's and master's programmes and in research.  Our activities are always focused on people and society. At the FSW fundamental, internationally oriented research is of paramount importance. In addition, social research for professionals, policy makers, and the society is part of our research activities. FSW offers a stimulating research environment where major national and international research grants are received. Appealing guest researchers and ambitious PhD candidates come along to conduct their research. Our education is small-scale and works with innovative forms of education such as Problem-Based Learning (PBL). Both the Dutch and English programmes are highly ranked by students and alumni.

The Erasmus School of Law has an international staff with around 350 members working in education and research. More than 4,000 students participate in the various programs. The presence of over 70 different nationalities makes it a meeting ground for viewpoints from all over the world. Research at Erasmus School of Law conducted in different departments falls at least within one of the School’s six research programs, Human Rights, Implementation of the Law, Lex Mercatoria, Monitoring safety & security, Fiscal autonomy and its boundaries, Behavioral Approaches to Contract and Tort: Relevance for Policymaking.

Additional information


Postdoc project ‘The Social Regulation of Work Disability’
A common explanation to account for variations in labour market participation of people with disabilities is the scope and depth of Active Labour Market Policies (ALMP’s). Yet, employment rates of people with a disability vary starkly between welfare states, also among those welfare states that are considered countries that followed a typical ‘activation’ path. For instance, labour market participation of people with disability differ significantly between Denmark and Sweden, two countries that both invested equally in ALMP’s. While Sweden has the best performance of all EU countries in terms of labour market participation, Denmark scores below the EU average. Also, Italy, Spain and Portugal have very low levels of investment in ALMPs and still dominant traditional passive compensatory welfare systems (benefits and early retirement schemes). Yet, labour market participation of people with disability in these countries is close to Denmark and higher than in for instance the Netherlands while the latter two countries have also been seen as making a ‘dramatic shift’ from passive to active labour market policies. How can we explain this puzzling variance?

The aim of this research is to develop and test an alternative explanation for the variance in employment rates of people with a disability. This alternative explanation concerns a broader system of social regulation. This alternative explanation will be tested, first, by way of a multi-level analysis with two levels: individual persons with disability (level 1) nested in countries (level 2). The EU-Labour Force Survey ad hoc module on employment of disabled people (LFS AHM) (2011) will be used to measure the dependent variable (labour market participation of people with disability). For the measurement of the social regulation system, existing indexes will have to be supplemented with qualitative data which have to be collected and coded. Second, a paired qualitative case comparison of four countries (i.e. Sweden and Denmark and France and The Netherlands) will supplement the multi-level analysis.

REI program ‘From Welfare to Social Investment’
The backdrop for the overarching REI program is that European states have retrenched and activated their social security systems during the last few decades. The latter implies that private actors (i.e. employers and employees) take major responsibility for the control of work-related risks (i.e. the risk of dropping out of work because of unemployment, disability, or sickness) and no longer fall back on the state as prime or ultimate caretaker. The first research question is whether state officials, employers and employees adopt new roles, identities and working practices in the implementation and enforcement of work-related risk control, and if so, how? The second research question is to what extent a decline in public compensation of work-related damage has been accompanied by behavioral adjustments by all parties involved in litigation, and why. The overall goal of this program is to analyze from a multidisciplinary, international comparative perspective the alleged shift in the allocation of responsibilities from public to private actors as far as the control of work-related risks is concerned and to derive policy implications from these insights that can facilitate employees better to strengthen their labor market position.

Research programs BACT and FWW
The central research questions of the research program BACT are how private law works in real life, how actors (individuals, organizations, society) involved think, decide and behave, what motivates them and how law tries to steer their behavior. The program addresses questions such as: what works and why? How can law reach underlying policy goals more effectively given behavioral traits of actors involved? As such, BACT contributes to the multidisciplinary study of behavior in markets, private law and regulation. This REI program aims to extend the scope of BACTs research program by incorporating the role of public law in the control of work-related risks as well as the relationship between private and public law in coping with these risks. The research program FWW is oriented at understanding changes in welfare state policies, work and social ties, in connection with economic, institutional and demographic change. It not only maps the changes across a wide range of countries and regions, but also examines the implications for social inequality and social exclusion. BACT consists mainly of private lawyers, lawyer-economics and psychologists whereas FWW consists mainly of sociologists. Therefore, the coalition between BACT and FWW requires a multidisciplinary approach in which all relevant social sciences are represented, which are needed to tackle the societal problems this REI proposal focuses on.

After recruiting the postdoc researcher the REI program team will consist of six researchers in total (four participating in BACT, one participating in FWW, and one participating in both research programs). The participants have a disciplinary background in law, law and economics, and sociology. The program team will meet regularly, will enact collaborative research, will discuss one another’s work, will organize events, and will present research findings.

Starting date: 1 October 2016

Please consult our website:

Any inquiries about the individual project and the overarching program may be addressed to Prof. Peter Mascini (phone +31-10-4082842; email or Prof. Michael Faure (phone + 31–10-4082193; e-mail

To apply, please send your motivation letter with your CV before September 5 2016 by e-mail to Please mention “Post-doc Sociology REI”.

Also submit a proposal of 750 words max. about the execution of the envisioned postdoc project ‘The Social Regulation of Work Disability’, or a personal research proposal (max. 1.000 words) that fits within the ambit of the awarded REI program. Both the research proposal for the postdoc project and the REI program ‘From Welfare to Social Investment’ can be obtained upon request.