Refugees and citizens in East-Central Europe in the 20th century

Research positions in the ERC-funded project “Unlikely refuge?”

The ERC Consolidator project “Unlikely refuge? Refugees and citizens in East-Central Europe in the 20th century”, led by the principal investigator Dr. Michal Frankl and hosted at the Masaryk Institute and Archives of the Czech Academy of Sciences, welcomes applications for research positions starting with September 1, 2019.

Deadline for submission: April 15, 2019

About the project:

The comparative research project aims to write refugees back into the history of East-Central Europe, a region which is often considered a place to leave rather than to search refuge in. The project team will systematically probe the interactions of civil societies, humanitarian organisations and nation states with refugees in Poland, Czechoslovakia, Austria, Hungary, Yugoslavia and their successor states in the 20th century.

The research conducted within the project will gravitate towards four refugee moments in the history of East-Central Europe which expose the ways in which refugees were discussed, received and categorised:

  • WWI and the creation of the nation-states
  • The end of the 1930s and the Nazi-era refugees
  • Cold war refugees (roughly 1950s)
  • Post-Communist refugees (1990s)

To extend and challenge the prevailing narratives centered around refugees as national and/or political diasporas, the project team will deploy a variety of methods, such as microhistorical approaches and spatial studies, and will examine humanitarianism and the relationship between refugees and (ethnic) citizenship in the region. For further details, see the project web-site.

About the positions:

  • We offer participation in the work of a highly motivated and transnational research team.
  • At this moment, the project opens positions equivalent to six full-time jobs, with a certain flexibility with regard to the number of hours per month (from full time to part time).
  • The maximum duration is five years, the length of the project.
  • The project welcomes applications from researchers at the post-doctoral level and beyond (in exceptional and highly relevant cases, PhD students can be considered as well).
  • The candidate will conduct research in one or more countries within the scope of the project. S/he can either reside Prague or in one of these countries, in accord with the principal investigator. In exceptional cases, another EU country of residence can be negotiated.
  • The salary will be compliant with the salary levels of the host institution and commensurate with experience. In addition to that, it will take into account the living costs in the country of residence to make the position internationally competitive.

The applicants are expected to:

  • demonstrate their ability to conduct first-class research, as a part of transnational research team,
  • prove a good knowledge of English as the project language and of at least one other relevant language,
  • prove their knowledge of the research of at least one country with regard to refugees,
  • suggest spatial and temporal focus of their research within the project, and optionally submit a specific research project (the researcher will devote about 50% of time to his/her sub-project, depending on specific arrangements with the principal investigator)

Application process:

Applications, marked “UnRef” in the subject, should be sent to no later than April 15, 2019 and must include (preferably in one PDF, with the exception of examples of candidate’s work):

  • cover letter
  • structured CV and bibliography
  • optionally a project outline (up to 1000 words)
  • optionally examples of published or unpublished texts

All materials (with the exception of the examples of candidate’s work) must be in English.

Selected applicants will be invited for interviews to take place in Prague or Vienna during May and June 2019.

Questions should be directed to the principal investigator at