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PhD scholarship in Theology and Religious Studies: Comparative Studies of Religion


Since its foundation in 1614, the University of Groningen has enjoyed an international reputation as a dynamic and innovative center of higher education offering high-quality teaching and research. Balanced study and career paths in a wide variety of disciplines encourage the 30,000 students and researchers to develop their own individual talents. Belonging to the best research universities in Europe and joining forces with prestigious partner universities and networks, the University of Groningen is truly an international place of knowledge. The Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies is an ambitious faculty with a dynamic and accomplished staff drawn from around the world (58% international), and a Graduate School with 60 PhD students.

Description of position

We offer a three-year scholarship to complete a PhD in Theology and Religious Studies. Applications are invited from high quality prospective PhD students with a good fit with the research specialisms and expertise of our academic staff from the department ‘Comparative Study of Religion’. The PhD student will be enrolled in our Graduate School. Information about the faculty, the department and the Graduate School can be found at:


The PhD student is expected:

  • to have a Master’s degree (preferably a two years Research Master or equivalent) in Theology or in Religious Studies or another relevant discipline;
  • to have a thorough training in research skills;
  • to be fluent in English (both oral and written);
  • to be able and willing to work in an interdisciplinary environment;
  • have the abilities to finish the PhD thesis in three years, like planning, taking initiative, academic writing, desire to publish.


The successful candidate will be part of the PhD Scholarship Programme and will receive a gross scholarship of €2027, of which wage tax and social insurance premiums will be deducted. After nine months, and thereafter annually, the progress will be evaluated. At these evaluations, it will be considered whether the results are sufficient for a successful and timely defense of the PhD thesis. As part of the programme, the PhD scholarship student will take part in the Career Perspectives Series, which provides a thorough preparation on the career after the PhD, inside or outside academia.

General information about the University of Groningen’s PhD scholarship programme can be found here:

The preferred starting date is 1 January 2017, or as soon as possible thereafter.


You can apply for these scholarship until 25 October 2016 Dutch local time, by sending an email to Your application should include:

  • a brief letter of motivation;
  • a CV, including contact details of two academic referees;
  • a research proposal of up to 2000 words, covering state of the art, main research question, key objectives, and relevance, the proposed (methodological) approach, a brief description of the relevant literature the proposed timetable for the writing of your thesis and including the names of the supervisors at the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies,;
  • a writing sample of no more than 5000 words, such as an essay or part of a master’s thesis
  • certified, official, transcripts of your academic degrees.
  • Official documents must be in the English or Dutch language. Any translation of originals not in these languages must be authenticated.

Note that the procedure will include interviews. Selected candidates will be invited for an interview in Groningen or via Skype. Interviews are scheduled to take place 8 November 2016.


Candidates who require further information can contact dr. Peter Berger, chair of the department Comparative Study of Religion (, or prof. dr. Marjo Buitelaar, Director of Graduate Studies in Theology and Religious Studies ( Please do not use these email addresses for applications.

Last modified:01 November 2016 1.12 p.m.