1 Doctoral position (Univ. of Vienna)

The Research Center for the History of Transformations (RECET), University of Vienna, invites applications for a fully funded three-year doctoral position within the research project "A Breach in the System: The 'Polonia Firms', 1976-1994" (funded by the Austrian Science Fund FWF and the Polish National Science Centre NCN).

Project dates: 01.07.2021 - 30.06.2024.

Application deadline: 01.04.2021.

The project is a cooperation between RECET and the Institute of History at the University of Warsaw and jointly led by Dr. Lars Fredrik Stöcker and Prof. Dr. Jerzy Kochanowski. Besides the two Principal Investigators and the Polish Co-Investigator, the research team includes a postdoctoral researcher based in Warsaw, while the doctoral candidate will work with Dr. Lars Fredrik Stöcker in Vienna.

Investigating the "polonia firms" (firmy polonijne), a unique case of transnational, non-state economic activity in the Soviet bloc, the project provides a historical take on the underexplored topic of private entrepreneurship in socialism. The focus on the Polish government's decision to deploy the diaspora's financial and business-related resources and to allow international joint ventures to operate as autonomous units in the national economy aims at tracing the roots of mass recruitment into entrepreneurship, socioeconomic upward mobility, and the emergence of a market society back to late socialism. Our joint endeavour takes inspiration from both social history and economic history approaches that prefer the longue durée over narratives of political ruptures and will be based on both traditional archival and oral history sources.

The successful candidate will be expected to conduct independent research within the framework of the joint project, focusing on the Polish community in Vienna, a city that played a key role in the history of Polish post-war migration as a major hub between the People's Republic and the West. The main objective of the case study is to provide deeper insight into the entrepreneurial activities of the Viennese Polonia, the long-term evolution of economic homeland-diaspora relations, and the political connotations of doing business and investing capital in communist Poland in a period of acute political crisis. Apart from research, the successful applicant will be expected to actively participate in the development of the joint project's conceptual and methodological basis, to assist in the organization of conferences and the editing of journal special issues, to present and publish research results, and to contribute to the development of the project website.


- The applicant must hold an MA degree or equivalent in history, cultural studies or a related discipline
- The position entails close cooperation with the other project members, requiring the ability to work in a team, but also a high degree of self-organization and effective time management
- Excellent or very good command of English, Polish, and German is required (written and spoken)
- A proven interest in post-1945 European history and earlier experience with archival research and oral history interviews will be considered an asset

We offer:

- An employment contract for a duration of 36 months at the University of Vienna (30 hours/week, 75%), with a salary in accordance with the collective bargaining agreement for Austrian universities
- Funding for project-related mobility (research missions and conference participation)
- An opportunity to work within an international team of scholars
- A lively intellectual and work environment at the University of Vienna and the project's partner institution, the University of Warsaw

Visit https://www.univie.ac.at and https://recet.at to learn more about the University of Vienna and RECET.

Applicants are requested to submit the following application documents as a single PDF file to lars.fredrik.stoecker@univie.ac.at by April 1, 2021:

- Curriculum Vitae including research experience, study or research stays abroad, language proficiency and, if applicable, a list of publications
- Certificates and transcripts of BA and MA degrees (or equivalent)- A writing sample (a research article or a chapter from the MA thesis)
- A brief research statement (1 page) specifying the applicant's interest in the topic, the motivation to work in the project, and how the applicant's academic background matches the research project
- Names and contact details of two senior scholars who may be asked to provide references for the applicant

Shortlisted candidates will be invited for interviews, which will be held digitally shortly after the application deadline.

The University of Vienna is an equal opportunity employer and aims to increase the proportion of women in areas in which they are underrepresented. We therefore explicitly encourage women to apply. The University of Vienna is committed to employing more disabled individuals, and applications from disabled people are especially welcome.

Further information is available from the Principal Investigator Dr. Lars Fredrik Stöcker: lars.fredrik.stoecker@univie.ac.at.