Albert Hirschman Centre on Democracy
28 March 2024

Open Call for Application for the SNSF Project “Labor Market Changes and Gender Polarization in Deindustrializing Societies”

The Albert Hirschman Centre on Democracy is recruiting a postdoctoral researcher for the project led by Prof. Sungmin Rho

Research project “Labor Market Changes and Gender Polarization in Deindustrializing Societies” funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF)


Period of Contract:

1 SEPTEMBER 2024 –31 AUGUST 2027

Activity Rate:


Application Deadline:

15 May 2024

This project examines the social and political consequences of structural changes in the labor market in Korea and China. There are growing conversations about the role of social and cultural factors in making sense of the political consequences of deindustrialization and economic slowdown. Both Korea and China are undergoing rapid structural labor market changes and experiencing high youth unemployment and labor market competition, but our understanding of the social and political implications is still limited. Rather than looking at the relationship from a material perspective, this project examines the influence of social and cultural norms.

In particular, this project examines the impact through a gendered lens and aims to extend the findings to other areas. This could refer to gendered impacts and patterns of structural labor market change or gendered responses mediated or moderated by existing social and cultural contexts. The project is interdisciplinary and involves political science, sociology, psychology, and management/organizational studies. Both quantitative and qualitative analyzes will be carried out.

General description of the position

The appointed postdoctoral fellow will work closely with the project’s Principal Investigator, Sungmin Rho, Associate Professor at the Department of International Relations and Political Science, and a Ph.D student. The fellow is expected to work on a research project that aligns closely with the broader theme of this research project.

To be successful in this role, the following skills and interests are expected:

  • Ph.D in Political Science or relevant disciplines (e.g. sociology, social psychology, international affairs, development studies, Asian studies)
  • Excellent written and oral communication in English
  • Fluency in Korean and/or Mandarin
  • In-depth regional knowledge of Korea and/or China
  • Experience in fieldwork
  • Willingness to engage with interdisciplinary and multi-method research 
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and ability to work with others

Given permit rules in Switzerland, applicants who are not Swiss or EU nationals should have got their PhDs no more than two years before they apply to the postdoctoral position.

Any of the following skills is preferred (although not required):

  • Experience with designing, implementing, and analyzing surveys
  • Experience with quantitative text analysis
  • Experience with mixed-methods research

What you can expect:

  • Salary and other welfare benefits in line with the SNSF range for postdoctoral fellows
  • Opportunity to travel for fieldwork (Korea and/or China)
  • Opportunity to participate in project related activities such as international and European conferences and workshops

Dossier and admission process

Please include the following in your application:

  • CV
  • Cover Letter / Letter of Motivation
  • A proposed Project Description of 3-4000 words, with discussion of how the proposal connects to the project theme  
  • The name of three references, who may be contacted in case of shortlisting.

Interested candidates should send their application to