Academic Positions

Postdoctoral fellowship in modern culture 1016777

The School of Culture and Society at Aarhus University invites applications for an 18-month postdoctoral fellowship in modern culture.

The position is full-time and available from 1 March 2019. 
Place of employment: Langelandsgade 139, 8000 Aarhus C, Denmark.
The position is associated with the research project “Data Wastelands”, supported by an AUFF Starting Grant.
Research context
Data Wastelands is a research project that pioneers the notion of data waste to focus on the waste-related dimensions of software and hardware in both metaphorical and material terms. This includes topics and issues such as data reuse, data cleaning, bit rot, data maintenance and legacy data, content moderation, toxic data, Garbage In Garbage Out, e-waste, data deletion, data sanitisation, data centre energy consumption, data infrastructures etc. The project will establish an interdisciplinary research group at the Department of Art History, Aesthetics & Culture and Museology with the objective of conceptualising and addressing data waste and the challenges lawmakers, corporations and citizens face in their understanding and handling of data waste. Through an innovative approach, combining the humanities, arts, law and social and computer sciences in processes of thinking and making, the group will forge a fundamentally new and theoretically informed approach to the material, cultural and ethical dimensions of data waste.
The project liaises with computer technologists, sociologists, contemporary art practitioners and policy makers to forge theoretically informed approaches to the technical, environmental and ethico-political implications of data waste.
The project seeks a postdoc who wishes to work on these issues in an interdisciplinary fashion. In particular, we encourage applications that build bridges between cultural theory and computer science. 
The successful applicant will be a member of a core team of three researchers. The project will moreover be in liaison with a number of larger research projects at both Aarhus University and the University of Copenhagen, including the Uncertain Archives research collective (KU), DataLab (AU) and Netlab (AU). 
The project is coordinated by Assistant Professor Nanna Bonde Thylstrup at the Department of Art History, Aesthetics & Culture and Museology, and will run from 2019 until 2021. 
The fellowship is affiliated with the Department of Art History, Aesthetics & Culture and Museology at Aarhus University.
Research profile
The research tasks of the postdoc will centre on studying and conceptualising different data waste ecologies. The postdoc will use these studies as a base for experimentally exploring, designing and implementing prototypic data waste infrastructures and their cultural, ethical and environmental dimensions. The postdoc will work closely together with the PI and the data developer of the project on both theoretical and practical issues related to these prototypes.
It is expected that all the project members help with the tasks that are already defined in the proposal as well as contributing additional research ideas. The successful applicant will be expected to partake in the day-to-day research of the core group, to publish in international high-profile journals and help co-organise a series of workshops that use the platform developments for broader discussions on the cultural, ethical and environmental dimensions of data waste raised in the proposal. 
The successful applicant should be capable of presenting and critiquing theoretical and empirical foundations of data waste and data wasteland imaginaries, and should have experience of working in highly interdisciplinary teams. Interest in research communication that moves beyond traditional academic channels is valued. Proficiency in academic English is a prerequisite.
For further information about the position, please contact the project manager, Nanna Bonde Thylstrup, email:  
Applicants for this position should hold a PhD degree or equivalent qualifications.
The successful applicant must document the ability to produce research publications of a high international standard (can be in process).
Excellent communication skills in English are considered essential, and applicants must speak and write academic English fluently. 
Applicants should – apart from the demands listed further below – submit:
  • a concise description of their research profile (max. two pages) 
  • a research proposal in the area of data wastelands (max. three pages).
The description and the proposal must be uploaded together with the application.
The application must be submitted in English.
For more information about the application, please contact HR supporter Helle Sindal, mail:
The Faculty of Arts at Aarhus University is one of the largest environments for research and education in Northern Europe. We investigate human cultural and social forms of expression and practice. 
For more information on the research activities of the School of Communication and Culture at Aarhus University, see

Qualification requirements

Applicants should hold a PhD or equivalent academic qualifications.


All interested candidates are encouraged to apply, regardless of their personal background.

Please apply here


All applications must be made online and received by:

Please apply online here

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