Two Assistant Professors - Environmental & Regional Governance

Utrecht University


Job description
Utrecht University has opened two new faculty positions at Assistant Professor level (tenure track) in the field of environmental governance, sustainable development and societal transformation.

The two Assistant Professors will focus on either global or regional governance processes. Candidates are expected to bring comprehensive expertise (as evidenced by key publications and/or successful acquisition activities) of the theories and methodological approaches in environmental governance research, including, for example, policy and network analysis, institutional and regime analysis, state-society relations, systems theory and policy instruments theory, along with strong knowledge of qualitative and/or quantitative research methods. Empirically, successful candidates will have strong affinity with governance of societal transformations in fields such as, for example, climate change mitigation and adaptation, sustainable production, biodiversity conservation, water management and/or sustainable urban development. In addition, the Copernicus Institute supports in all its activities a transformative vision of change, expecting its faculty members to engage in fresh thinking that goes beyond existing political institutions and governance systems, which have failed so far to address the fundamental sustainability challenges of our time.

Both Assistant Professors will teach in the newly developed BSc in Global Sustainability Science and the internationally leading MSc in Sustainable Development. All teaching will be in the English language. In addition, successful candidates will be expected to supervise BSc and MSc projects, as well as to contribute to the acquisition and execution of externally funded projects.

Both positions will be affiliated with the Environmental Governance group, one of the four departments of the university’s Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development. The Environmental Governance group is a dynamic, ambitious and internationally leading team of researchers with a focus on fundamental and policy-oriented research of environmental governance processes, from local to global levels. The Copernicus Institute has been evaluated in an 2014 international review as the highest ranked research institute in environmental sciences in the Netherlands. Since then, the institute has intensified its efforts in maintaining its leading position, among others by investing in several new international faculty appointments and by developing new, internationally oriented teaching programmes. Utrecht University has been ranked in the 2014 Academic Ranking of World Universities as the best university in the Netherlands, and as one of the leading research universities in Europe. The University is committed to a strategic orientation on four overarching themes, which include “Sustainability” and “Institutions”. The two Assistant Professors who are now being hired will thus be able to develop their career at the interface of two of the main strategic themes of the university, opening up numerous opportunities for university-wide interaction and support. The city of Utrecht is one of the oldest cities in the Netherlands, with a charming old centre and an internationally oriented culture that is strongly influenced by its century-old university. Utrecht city has been consistently ranked as one of the most liveable cities in the Netherlands.

We offer a full-time tenure track position that starts with an initial period of two years, with an intended extension of either another two years or a conversion to a permanent position, subject to performance. Further career development to Associate Professor level is possible. Employment conditions are based on the Collective Labour Agreement of the Dutch Universities. The gross monthly salary is dependent on qualifications and experience and will start between € 3,324.- and € 4,551.- per month (scale 11). The salary is supplemented by a holiday allowance of 8% per year and a year-end bonus of 8.3%. We also offer a pension scheme and flexible employment conditions.

Additional information
For informal inquiries you can contact Prof. Peter Driessen, email:

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Dr. Simon Batterbury


Associate Professor| School of Geography | 221 Bouverie St  (rm L2.33) | University of Melbourne, 3010 VIC, Australia.   +61 (0)3 8344 9319  simonpjb @ |


Visiting Reseach Fellow, | Brussels Centre for Urban Studies | Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium.