The Human Resources Strategy for Researchers

Junior Researcher ' Trafficking Transformations: Objects as Agents in Transnational Criminal Networks' project (1,0 ft) - Faculty of Law

This job offer has expired

    Maastricht University (UM)
    Juridical sciences
    Recognised Researcher (R2)
    22/03/2020 23:59 - Europe/Brussels
    Netherlands › Maastricht


We are offering an exciting opportunity for a talented and aspiring early career researcher to enhance their research skills in a multi-national and interdisciplinary research team. In addition, you will gain exposure to a variety of tasks involved in the management of a complex research project and in the translation of research results into societally relevant outputs. You will be part of a close-knit, though international research team willing to innovate and provide support for the development of new competencies and skills.

About the Project

The TRANSFORM project (Trafficking Transformations: Objects as Agents in Transnational Criminal Networks), headed by Dr Donna Yates, is a multidisciplinary project that combines methods and theory from criminology, archaeology, law, sociology, heritage studies, palaeontology, and conservation studies, to explore the role that objects play in illicit trafficking networks. Looking specifically at three types of collectable, desirable, and valuable objects that seem to attract crime (antiquities/cultural objects, fossils, collectable wildlife), project field research will start in the American Southwest, Southern Africa, and the South Pacific, and researchers will "follow the objects" as they move around the globe. Through data collection at multiple sites along trafficking pathways, the transformations of these objects, the networks that they create, and the people they influence will form a narrative, a biography of trafficking. This will reveal the hidden lives of illicit commodities prior to their appearance as objects of conspicuous consumption in public markets, and holds the prospect of destabilising existing assumptions about the formulation, maintenance, and disruption of transnational criminal networks, transforming our understanding of organised crime.

An important aspect of this project is data-sharing with stakeholders and generating meaningful outputs for stakeholders and policy-makers beyond academia. This will include the development of toolkits, training scenarios, and other digital resources for understanding the illicit movements of antiquities, wildlife, and fossils; the junior researcher will take the lead in development of these project outputs and resources.

Tasks and Responsibilities:

  • Coordinate the development of digital research outputs, including: online training scenarios, stakeholder toolkits, and digital object biographies;
  • Assist in the development of, and provide ongoing updates to the project website;
  • Compile quarterly and annual online project reports with input from project team members;
  • Maintain project social and traditional media presence;
  • Provide research support to project team as required (drafting annotated bibliographies, transcription, editing, organising).

All of the abovementioned tasks will be carried out under the supervision of senior researchers. The project language is English.

More Information


The appointment as researcher will be for a period up to three years. The salary will be set in salary scale 10 of the collective labour agreement of the Dutch Universities, minimum gross month salary € 2.709,00 and maximum € 3.255,00; on top of this there will be an 8% holiday and an 8,3% year-end allowance.

The terms of employment of Maastricht University are set out in the Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities (CAO). Furthermore, local UM provisions also apply. For more information look at the website http://www.maastrichtuniversity.nl > Support > UM employees.

Selection process

Written applications with motivation letter, curriculum vitae and grade lists, must be sent no later than 22 March 2020 (23:59), to: Pzfdrvacatures@maastrichtuniversity.nl. When applying for this job, please always mention the vacancy number.

Please note that any approach of recruiters will not be appreciated.

Maastricht University is committed to nurturing an inclusive culture and a welcoming atmosphere. This inclusiveness strategy has resulted in a very diverse representation of nationalities and cultures. We strongly believe that diversity (including, but not limited to nationality, age and gender) of the staff and student population will increase the quality of UM education & research. Fostering diversity and inclusivity creates an academic community where individual talents thrive, and values and differences are cherished. We strongly encourage you to apply if you are qualified for this position.

Additional comments

More information on this vacancy can be obtained by Ms. D. Yates (d.yates@maastrichtuniversity.nl).  

Web site for additional job details

Offer Requirements

Specific Requirements

Profile and competencies: 

  • Master's degree in criminology, sociology, law, or field related to this project; PhD desirable, criminological background desirable;
  • Experience with/solid background in empirical research on crime related to antiquities/cultural objects, wildlife, fossils, or other illicit commodities;
  • Advanced skills and displayable competency in content management systems and various forms of digital communication;
  • Experience with online learning platforms;
  • Excellent command of English, including written English;
  • Excellent research and analytical skills;
  • Strong organisational skills;
  • Good interpersonal skills enabling to maintain effective relationships with team members located internationally;
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team;
  • Experience with or knowledge of web design and/or web development is a plus.

Work location(s)
1 position(s) available at
Maastricht University
6211 LH
Bouillonstraat 3

EURAXESS offer ID: 494326
Posting organisation offer ID: 289860


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