Postdoc position in Formal Semantics – experimental, computational and theoretical aspects (1.0 FTE)

Onderwijs en onderzoek
Uren per week: 
38 tot 40
Faculteit of dienst: 
Faculteit Geesteswetenschappen
Departement Talen, Literatuur en Communicatie
Uiterlijk reageren op: 
27 januari 2020


The Utrecht Institute of Linguistics (UiL OTS) invites applications for a Postdoc position in Formal Semantics. You will be participating in the project the Formal Semantics of Collective Categorization (ROCKY). This project is funded by the European Union, by way of an ERC advanced Grant awarded to Prof. Yoad Winter at Utrecht University, the Netherlands. The project develops models of collective reference that are theoretically grounded in linguistic, cognitive and computational theories of meaning.

ROCKY is currently offering a Postdoc position with 1 April 2020 as the intended starting date. The successful candidate will work in a team with the PI and other project members, in collaboration with Prof. James Hampton (Psychology, City, University of London). We are looking for a Postdoc researcher with expertise in experimental, computational or theoretical approaches to formal semantics of natural language.


  • Carry out research in formal semantics, in collaboration with the ROCKY team.
  • Regular presentation of intermediate research results at workshops and conferences.
  • Publication of peer-reviewed articles in established international journals or conference proceedings, possibly in collaboration with other project members.
  • Help with organizational tasks connected to the project, such as the organization of conferences and workshops.
  • If applicable, help with the supervision of PhD candidates and research assistants in the project.


We are looking for a colleague with:

  • a PhD in experimental, computational or theoretical approaches to formal semantics of natural language (to be completed before start of the job);
  • interest in formal semantics, cognitive psychology, cross-linguistic variation;
  • the ability to perform and publish high quality research, demonstrated by a strong publication record in international peer-reviewed journals and conference proceedings;
  • excellent English oral proficiency, academic writing and presentation skills.


The successful candidate will be appointed on a fixed-term basis (1.0 FTE), starting 1 April 2020 or soon thereafter. This is an appointment  for the duration of 2 years, with a one-year initial trial period. The minimum gross salary is €3,389 and the maximum gross salary is €3,773 (scale 10/11 of the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities) per month, at a full-time employment.

Besides that, you will receive a holiday allowance of 8 % and a year-end bonus of 8.3 %. Utrecht University also has an appealing package of terms of employment, including the choice for a good balance between work and private (a good arrangement for leave, among other things), possibilities for development and an excellent pension scheme. More information on working at Utrecht University can be found here.

Over de organisatie

A better future for everyone. This ambition motivates our scientists in executing their leading research and inspiring teaching. At Utrecht University, the various disciplines collaborate intensively towards major societal themes. Our focus is on Dynamics of Youth, Institutions for Open Societies, Life Sciences and Sustainability.

The Faculty of Humanities has around 6,000 students and 900 staff members. It comprises four knowledge domains: Philosophy and Religious Studies, History and Art History, Media and Culture Studies, and Languages, Literature and Communication. With its research and education in these fields, the Faculty aims to contribute to a better understanding of the Netherlands and Europe in a rapidly changing social and cultural context. The enthusiastic and committed colleagues and the excellent amenities in the historical city center of Utrecht, where the Faculty is housed, contribute to an inspiring working environment.

The Department of Language, Literature and Communication offers BA and MA programmes in literary studies, linguistics, communication studies, translation, as well as Dutch, English, German, French, Italian, Spanish and (uniquely in the Netherlands) Celtic languages.

The research is conducted within the Language, Logic and Information group of the Utrecht Institute of Linguistics OTS. Other research groups at UiL OTS focus on Language Variation, Language and Education, Language and Communication, Language Acquisition: Processing and Disorders. The UiL OTS research staff comprises approximately 20 Full Professors, a dozen Postdocs and roughly 40 PhD candidates.

Aanvullende informatie

For more information about this position, please contact Maaike Schoorlemmer (Research Coordinator), via or +31 30 253 61 83. Please note that it may take until early January until she is able to respond to your message.


Everyone deserves to feel at home at our university. We welcome employees with a wide variety of backgrounds and perspectives.

If you are interested in applying for the position, please submit digital copies of the following documents through the application website:

  • a letter of motivation and/or a research statement, explaining why and how your own experience can insightfully be embedded in the project and how the research you plan to carry out furthers the aims of this project (500 to 1000 words);
  • two publications/chapters of PhD thesis;
  • a cv including an overview of publications and teaching experience;
  • names and full contact details of two academic referees. 

The application deadline is January 27, 2020. Interviews, live or by videoconference, will be held during the week of February 10, 2020. The intended starting date is April 1 2020.

Uiterlijk reageren op 27 januari 2020.