Job advertisement

Vacancy ID: 292/2022
Closing date: 2022-09-30


Friedrich Schiller University is a traditional university with a strong research profile rooted in the heart of Germany. As a university covering all disciplines, it offers a wide range of subjects. Its research is focused on the areas Light—Life—Liberty. It is closely networked with non-research institutions, research companies and renowned cultural institutions. With around 18,000 students and more than 8,600 employees, the university plays a major role in shaping Jena’s character as a cosmopolitan and future-oriented city.

The Faculty of Arts seeks to fill as soon as possible the position of a

Junior Research Group Leader (m/f/d) Social Imaginations

We offer a full-time (100%/40 hours per week) position according to TV-L 14 for a limited period until 31.12.2025. An extension of up to three years is being sought.

Under the working title ‘Social Imaginations in Times of Contested Realities’, the University of Jena is combining previous research foci and expanding them into an area that will focus on one central problem amongst contemporary societies, thereby connecting current social science approaches with cultural-historical studies. The assumption that social imaginations have a constitutive role in shared or contested realities – or at least in what is taken to be reality – has been an established consensus in humanities research for several decades. In contrast, there is a lack of tools that allow us to grasp the formation of social imaginations and their contradictory pluralization. Thus, the research project, which is based at the Faculty of Arts, offers several possibilities for establishing such connections:

  • First, the debate, which is widely branching at the theoretical level, is to be synthesized using integrative terms so that it can be coalesced, its methodological and terminological positions can be surveyed, and it can be made empirically useful.
  • Second, the significance of imaginations for social groups is to be researched historically and in relation to the present in a broad interdisciplinary manner, whereby historical-cultural scientific research approaches in particular are coordinated with sociological-empirical research approaches.
  • Third, established theoretical approaches should be given a contemporary focus: for example, by taking into account past ‘turns’ – such as the ‘linguistic’, ‘iconic’, ‘spatial’, ‘material’ and the ‘practical’ turns – on the one hand, and by including recent developments that make the consensual distinction between fact and fiction more difficult (social media, conspiracy myths and political, religious ideologies), on the other.

In order to further develop our research in this field, we would like to immediately establish an Early Career Research Group, that will investigate the outlined issues.

Your responsibilities:

    • You are to engage in independent research in order to link different areas of activity. One might think of an intensive combination of research in the humanities, cultural studies and social sciences or of a close interlocking of theoretical and empirical or historical approaches.
    • You will supervise and be responsible for two doctoral students.
    • You are responsible for managing and supervising two doctoral students.
    • You will conceptualize and organize conferences and prepare publications.

Your profile:

    • You should have received top marks for your doctorate in the social sciences, cultural studies or humanities. The completion of the doctorate should not date back more than six years (the period is extended in the case of parental leave or other care obligations that might have interrupted your academic activity).
    • You should exhibit a willingness to engage in challenging and innovative interdisciplinary modes of working based on your relevant subject expertise.
    • Willingness and interest in interdisciplinary collaborations and own scientific qualification.

We offer:

    • Remuneration based on the provisions of the Collective Agreement for the Public Sector of the Federal States (TV-L) at salary scale 14 — depending on the candidate’s personal qualifications—, including a special annual payment in accordance with the collective agreement, and attractive fringe benefits, e.g. Job Ticket (public transport benefit), and an occupational pension (VBL)
    • A diversified and self-directed working atmosphere with considerable creative freedom in a dynamic, interdisciplinary and international research environment.
    • Participation in diverse empirical and theoretical research projects with a strong interdisciplinary nature
    • Flexible working hours (flexitime and, if applicable, teleworking)
    • A family-friendly working environment with a variety of offers for families: University Family Office ‘JUniFamilie’ and flexible childcare (‘JUniKinder)

The University of Jena strives for a higher proportion of women in the field of science; therefore, we strongly encourage qualified female scientists to apply.

Candidates with severe disabilities will be given preference in the case of equal qualifications and suitability.

If you can imagine a subject-specific and interdisciplinary connection to the outlined topics with your research focus, please send us a PDF containing a short outline of your project (approx. 3–5 pages) as well as the relevant documents pertaining to your person (a tabular curriculum vitae, copies of your certificates, a list of publications and a concise sample of your writings in the form of an essay/book chapter) quoting the registration number 292/2022, by 30.09.2022:

Friedrich Schiller Universität Jena
Faculty of Arts
Prof. Dr. Stefan Matuschek
07743 Jena, Germany

If you have any further questions, please contact Prof. Dr. Stefan Matuschek at

Since all application documents will be duly destroyed after the recruitment process, we ask you to submit only copies of your documents.

Back to overview