PhD position: Knowledge brokerage to promote sustainable food consumption and production

In January 2011 the project ‘FOODLINKS’ (Knowledge brokerage to promote sustainable food consumption and production: linking scientists, policymakers and civil society organizations) will start. This project is funded by the European Commission and will be carried out by a consortium of 14 partners (universities, regional and local governments and civil society organizations) from 9 European countries. The overall project aims at developing and experimenting with new ways of linking research to policy-making in the field of sustainable food consumption and production. FOODLINKS will be coordinated by Prof. Han Wiskerke and Dr. Bettina Bock of the Rural Sociology Group of Wageningen University.

Job description

Within the FOODLINKS project we are looking for a a PhD candidate who is interested in issues of science-society dialogue, science-policy collaboration and social learning in the field of sustainable production and consumption. The PhD candidate will combine the writing of a PhD thesis with hands-on participation in a EC-funded project and contribution to project deliverables. 

Within the overall FOODLINKS project,  the PhD project monitors and evaluates the processes of social learning taking place in three Communities of Practice that are established as part of the project. In these Communities of Practice researchers, policymakers and civil society organization exchange knowledge and experiences and commonly define new research questions in the field of short food supply chains, sustainable public food procurement and urban food strategies. The PhD project will evaluate the knowledge brokerage activities and processes of social learning that are taking place in the Communities of Practice as well as in the project as a whole. 


  • A Master degree in sociology, communication science or innovation studies.
  • Knowledge of relevant theoretical concepts in science and technology studies, science-society dialogue and science-policy collaboration, such as boundary work, knowledge brokerage, multi-stakeholder participation and social learning.
  • Knowledge of and experience with monitoring and evaluating processes of (social) learning.
  • Some knowledge of or interest in agro-food research and issues of sustainable food production and consumption. 
  • Good analytical and writing skills.
  • Fluent in English
  • Willing to travel as the project will include frequent meetings within Europe.

 Appointment conditions

A PhD position for a period of 18 months, extended with another 30 months upon favourable evaluation. Gross salary will increase from € 2042 per month in the first year up to € 2612 per month in the last year based on a full-time appointment (38 hours per week). In addition, we offer a holiday bonus of 8% and an end-of-the-year bonus of 8.3% of your annual salary. 

 Additional information

Additional information about the vacancy can be obtained from:

  • Prof. dr. ir J.S.C. Wiskerke, Chair of Rural Sociology, Telephone number: +31 317 482679/4507 and
  • Dr. Ir B.B. Bock, Associate Professor Rural Sociology, Telephone number: +31 317 483275/4507 

Additional information about the FOODLINKS project can obtained through this link. The PhD position is mainly related to Work Packages (WPs) 2, 6 and 7 of FOODLINKS.

Additional information about the organisation can be obtained through one of the following:

Interested? Apply now via before November 8th 2010 (Vacancy number: SSG-RSO-0005).

1 thought on “PhD position: Knowledge brokerage to promote sustainable food consumption and production

  1. Professor Dr. Wiskerke,
    I possess a Phd in Philosophy (from the University of London, UK) and I am presently teaching Sociology of Food at the University of Toronto. I would be very interested in applying for this post myself, but as I am already in possession of a doctorate, I wonder whether you would welcome my application. Could you let me know?
    Dr. Wayne Roberts, formerly of the Toronto Food Policy Council, and now a consultant on Food Policy encouraged me to apply for this position. I have published on antibiotics and meat in the Canadian Medical Association Journal and I have delivered guest lectures on GMOs and food topics at universities here in Canada.
    Best wishes,

Comments are closed.