Tübingen: PhD student (f/m/d)

University: PhD student (f/m/d; 65%) Comparative Psychology

PhD student (m/w/d, E 13 TV-L, 65%)

Faculty of Science, Institute for Archaeological Sciences
Bewerbungsfrist: 30.06.2023

Hosted by the Palaeoanthropology section of the Institute for Archaeological Sciences, the growing Freigeist Research Group “Pathways to Language” funded by the Volkswagen Foundation and led by Dr. Marlen Fröhlich is currently looking for a

PhD student – Comparative Psychology (f/m/d, E 13 TV-L, 65%)

to study the coordination of joint action in two distinct human societies. This project is fully funded for four years and will be carried out in cooperation with the Developmental Psychology group at the University of Tübingen (Prof. Dr. Claudia Friedrich), and the Human Evolutionary Ecology group at the University of Zurich (Prof. Dr. Andrea Migliano).

Project summary

Arguably the most powerful social tool in the animal kingdom, language may have evolved as an adaptation to a new demand: the coordination of joint action. Coordinated joint action requires highly flexible adjustments in communicative behaviour regarding social context, interaction partner and ecological settings. Are the evolutionary roots of this plasticity to be found in our closest living relatives, the great apes? This hypothesis remains to be tested, because most comparative work focuses on population- or species-level variation rather than variation on the individual level. To tease apart variation on an individual, group and species level, we will gather comparative observational and experimental datasets on the coordination of joint activities in great apes and humans. The successful applicant will study interactions of human children of different ages (18-24 months & 3 years) with their social partners in a large-scale, industrialized (Tübingen, Germany) and small-scale, traditional society (BaYaka hunter-gatherers, Congo Brazzaville).

Candidate profile

We seek an enthusiastic PhD candidate with experience in collecting and analysing behavioural and/or experimental data in humans or great apes. Ideally, this candidate will have fieldwork experience in tropical forests and under challenging field conditions, as well as good writing skills. We can only consider applicants with a MSc degree in Comparative or Developmental Psychology, Biology, Biological Anthropology, or a related field. Proficiency in English is required, some knowledge of French desired. Our research is highly collaborative, hence we are looking for a team player who is ready to temporarily live with limited personal space and is respectful of cultural differences.

Our offer

We offer an exciting four-year doctoral position in a small international and interdisciplinary team based at a highly renowned university, where you will have the possibility to conduct research with a high amount of autonomy, a collegial work atmosphere and ongoing career mentoring. The lab is embedded within the stimulating research environment of the DFG Centre for Advanced Studies “Words, Bones, Genes, Tools: Tracking Linguistic, Cultural and Biological Trajectories of the Human Past”.

We provide remuneration in accordance with the TV-L E13 / 65 % (collective agreement for public employees of the German federal states) as well as all corresponding benefits, e.g., extensive visa and onboarding assistance, 30 days/year of paid vacation, flexible working hours, discounted public transportation, etc.

How to apply

Applications should be submitted no later than June 30th to our administrative assistant Ursula Muenster (ursula.muenster(at)uni-tuebingen.de) and include a CV, a Cover letter (explaining why you are interested in the position, and how you would approach the topic from an experimental and theoretical perspective), as well as the contact details of two references.

The desirable starting date is October 2023, however applications will be considered until the position is filled. For any project-related information please directly contact Dr. Marlen Fröhlich (marlen.froehlich(at)uni-tuebingen.de).

The University of Tübingen wishes to enhance the share of employed women in research and teaching. Individuals with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply and having the same occupational aptitude will be preferred.

The university is committed to equal opportunities and diversity. It therefore takes individual situations into account and asks for relevant information. The employment will be handled by the central administration of the University of Tübingen.

Die Ausschreibung ist auch im Internet unter https://uni-tuebingen.de/universitaet/stellenangebote/newsfullview-stellenangebote/article/phd-student-m-w-d-e-13-tv-l-65/ abrufbar.

Weitere Hinweise

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