Postdoctoral Position in Societal Implications of the Internet

University of Zurich Department of Communication and Media Research


Department of Communication and Media Research (IKMZ)

Senior Research and Teaching Associate / Postdoctoral Position in Societal Implications of the Internet
80-100 %

The Media Change and Innovation Division (, Department of Communication and Media Research (IKMZ), University of Zurich is seeking applications for a senior research and teaching associate / postdoctoral position. The successful applicant will work on dedicated topics that align with the division's research program ( and contribute to a new research project on the chilling effects of dataveillance that is funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) and led by Prof. Dr. Michael Latzer.

The division's research program focuses, among other things, on the societal implications of digitalization and the internet, algorithmic selection and AI in everyday life, dataveillance and privacy, governance of media change, digital inequalities, and digital well-being (see for the division's recent publications). The SNSF project aims at conceptually capturing and empirically assessing chilling effects, i.e., inhibitory effects on people's digital communication behaviors that result from their sense of being surveilled online from an empirical communication science perspective (

Your responsibilities

As a senior research and teaching associate / postdoctoral researcher in the team, you will
  • Devise and conduct original theoretical and empirical research in the area of digital media use, well-being, social impacts of algorithmic selection and AI, governance of media change, privacy, and dataveillance
  • Contribute to the project The Chilling Effects of Dataveillance: Conceptual Advances and Empirical Evidence for Switzerland
  • (Co)author academic publications
  • Participate in academic exchange (e.g., conferences, departmental talks) and support outreach activities that target the public
  • Contribute to teaching and student supervision aligned with the division's teaching priorities, mentor PhD students in the division
  • Attain further academic qualifications (e.g., colloquia, research seminars, or summer/winter schools)

Your profile

  • PhD degree in communication or a related discipline
  • Experience with and/or interest in conducting interdisciplinary research on what digitalization and the internet mean for well-being, reality construction, social order, democracy, privacy, and autonomy
  • Excellent ability to apply at least one of the following quantitative methods: analysis of longitudinal data, experimental designs, survey questionnaire design, descriptive and advanced statistics (e.g., structural equation modeling), agent-based simulation or other computational methods
  • Excellent time management, ability to take initiative, and independent work attitude under the guidance of the division chair
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Proficiency in English and German or willingness to acquire a passive understanding of German in the medium term

What we offer

  • Internationally competitive salary
  • An internationally highly successful department: IKMZ is among the top 5 communication science departments in Europe and the top 20 worldwide
  • A supportive, globally connected, research-oriented team with an interdisciplinary approach using innovative methods
  • An excellent opportunity to develop academic qualifications and gain credentials and experience in the interdisciplinary fields of digital media use, well-being, algorithms, governance, privacy, and dataveillance
  • Strong support for career development, including funding opportunities for conference travel and summer/winter schools
  • An attractive work environment: the University of Zurich is one of Switzerland's leading universities in a vibrant, cosmopolitan city that regularly ranks as one of the cities with the highest quality of life in the world

Place of work

University of Zurich
Department of Communication and Media Research (IKMZ)
Media Change and Innovation Division
Andreasstrasse 15
CH-8050 Zürich

Start of employment

The planned starting date for this position is 1 October 2022 or upon agreement.
The preferred submission date for applications is 19 July or earlier; review of applications starts immediately. However, the position will remain open until a suitable candidate is found. Please submit your application containing your CV including a list of publications and conference presentations, copy of degrees, up to three selected publications (e.g., journal articles, dissertation chapter), and a short letter of motivation (max. 2 pages A4) in a single PDF file.
The contract is for 3 years and can be renewed.

Further information

In your application, please refer to


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