Postdoc Position at The Leibniz Institute of Ecological Urban and Regional Development (IOER) in Dresden,Germany

The Leibniz Institute of Ecological Urban and Regional Development e.V. (IOER) in Dresden ad- vertises the following position as a fixed-term work contract for three years (according to the Ger- man law on fixed-term contracts in science – WissZeitVG): Post-Doc Position (f/m/d)
Transformative capacity and spatial sustainability transformation

TV-L E 13
Full time 40 hours per week
Start: at the earliest possible date

The Leibniz Institute of Ecological Urban and Regional Development (IOER) in Dresden is a non- university research center, and a member of the Leibniz Association. We investigate the transformative capacity of society and systems as well as characteristics, dynamics and governance of spatial sustainability transformations and their acceleration in the context of the global social-ecological crisis. The advertised position is allocated to the research area “Sustainability Transitions in Cities and Regions”.


A deep and just transformation to sustainable ways of living and working that respect the biophys- ical boundaries of our planet is the key challenge for humanity in the 21st century. While different scientific schools have investigated the characteristics, dynamics and governance of socio-tech- nical, social-ecological and socio-institutional transformations, their spatial implications remain un- derexplored both theoretically and empirically. Addressing this research gap requires an inter- and transdisciplinary perspective and co-productive research designs in order to better understand how transformative change in cities and regions worldwide can be initiated and navigated towards sustainability.

Task description

  1.     Collaboration in strengthening and profiling the IOER research area on “Sustainability Transitions in Cities and Regions” with a focus on conceptual and empirical contributions regarding the governance of transformation dynamics and their spatial implications
  2.     Articulating interdisciplinary linkages across the IOER research areas by connecting spatial transformation research to other relevant strands (e.g. spatial data science, planning and participation, nature-based solutions, post-growth, economy for the common good, regional innovation)
  3.     Preparation of research project proposals at national, European and international level (e.g. DFG, Horizon Europe, Belmont Forum)
  4.     Elaboration of journal and conference papers in collaboration with the IOER research team and international partners
  5.     Development and test of methodological innovations in knowledge co-production and co-design through transdisciplinary and transformative research settings (e.g. transition experiments, real world laboratories, living labs, citizen science)
  6.     Collaboration with IOER non-academic partners (i.e. public administration and policy, civil society, business, cultural institutions), especially building on and intensifying the trustful co- operation with local partners like the City of Dresden
  7.     Support in communicating and disseminating research outputs and outcomes to diverse au- diences inside and outside the academic sector
  8.     Collaboration in conceptualizing and implementing high level events of the IOER (e.g. the IOER annual conference 2021 ‘Space & Transformation’)
  9.     Collaborating with the Technische Universität Dresden in the frame of projects, publications, events and the regional excellence initiative “Dresden Concept”
  10.     Education of next generation researchers through innovative analogue and digital teaching formats in the context of the Dresden Leibniz Graduate School operated by the IOER and the Technische Universität Dresden, or other graduate programs.

Expected skills and competencies

  1.     Very good university degree (Master, Diploma) in any pertinent field
  2.     Very good dissertation (Ph.D.) in social sciences and/or urban/regional/spatial studies, sustainability sciences or transition studies, including any pertinent intersections with other fields
  3.     Strong interest in sustainability research from various angles (political, spatial, environmental, economic, planning, social and cultural science among others)
  4.     Research experiences in one or more fields of sustainability research (e.g. sustainable food-, mobility-, energy-, building-, ecological-systems)
  5.     Knowledge in transition studies, in particular on socio-technical and/or social-ecological systems and/or socio-institutional approaches would be an asset
  6.     International publication record in the field, as documented by own publications
  7.     Solid skills regarding diverse methods of empirical social research; experience in doing trans- disciplinary or transformative research would be an asset
  8.     Ability to attract competitive research grants, to manage research projects and to coordinate and guide research teams at IOER and within international research consortia
  9.     Sound team working and collaborative leadership skills
  10.     Ability to work independently and to self-organize
  11.     Proven organization, communication and moderation skills inside and outside the academic sector (e.g. public sector, private sector, third sector, civil society)
  12.     English language proficiency (CEFR level C1 or higher) – German language proficiency would be an asset

Employment at IOER

The selected candidate will be interacting in a highly interdisciplinary environment. S/he will be fully integrated into the research area “Sustainability Transitions in Cities and Regions” and work in close coordination with the head and senior researchers of the research area, as well as the director of IOER. Further scientific qualification during the employment period is strongly encour- aged. We actively support Post-Doc researchers through tailored skill and career development measures, including continuous mentoring, as well as training opportunities e.g. regarding scien- tific methods and publishing.

What we offer:

Collaboration in a highly qualified interdisciplinary team at a leading research institute of the Leibniz Association
Flat hierarchies and a creative and motivating working environment
Vivid social culture, openness and trusted cooperation
Family support and flexible working schedules
Equal opportunities (Total-E-Quality certified)
Career planning and training opportunities
Jobticket for public transport

The place of work is Dresden.

Additional security through a company pension scheme (VBL).

The IOER promotes professional equality between women and men as well as diversity, and is particularly committed to reconciling family and professional life. Women are expressly encouraged to apply. Applications from recognized severely disabled persons are welcome.

Please submit your complete application documents (motivation letter, CV, diplomas, job refer- ences, references and important qualifications for further training) by using the keyword “Capacity” by April 19th, 2021 to [email protected] or by regular mail:

Leibniz-Institut für ökologische Raumentwicklung e.V.
Personalbüro (keyword: Capacity)
Weberplatz 1, 01217 Dresden, Germany

Please note that we will not be able to return your application dossier.


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