Research School for Economic and Social History


Phd position ‘The Global Business of Slave Trade’ (IISH) – deadline 29 September 2023

The International Institute of Social History (IISH-KNAW) has opened a PhD position for the project The Global Business of Slave Trade (1,0 fte.), for a period of 48 months.

The Project Global Business of Slave Trade: Patterns, Actors and Gains in the Early Modern Dutch and Iberian Slave Trade will study the main patterns of the Dutch, Portuguese and Spanish slave trades in the Indian Ocean, Indonesian Archipelago, and the South China Sea. It will do so by examining in detail how and by whom were these commercial flows and operations organized, who gained and lost by being involved in these activities, and what participation in these commercial streams meant for the economies of these European Empires in Asia.

The IISH is looking for a PhD candidate that enjoys historical research and historical writing, and that is comfortable working both independently and in a team. The candidate needs to be familiar with early modern social and economic history, in particular Global and Colonial History and more specifically the topic of slave trade and slavery. The candidate is expected to have experience with archival research, as well as command of at least three of the following languages: English (academic level), Dutch, Portuguese and/or Spanish.

The PhD Candidate will be integrated in the Research Department of the IISH. Through the Project, the PhD Candidate will also be directly connected to Low Countries Research School for Social and Economic History (The N.W. Posthumus Institute) and be involved with other research projects, such as Exploring Slave Trade in Asia, Globalise, Resisting Enslavement and the Global Hub of Labour Conflicts.

Applications should be submitted ultimately 29 September 2023.