Doctoral researcher in the field of Development Economics / Political Economy

Job Description

  • The doctoral project aims to study policies to mitigate violent conflict using state-of-the-art geospatial and econometric techniques.
  • The candidate will write a doctoral thesis under the supervision of Joseph Gomes and co-supervision of Alex Armand (Nova Lisbon). The candidate will work at IRES, Louvain-La-Neuve, and will have the possibilities of extensive interaction with other professors, especially with William Pariente and Amma Panin, as well as other PhD students, and postdoctoral researchers.
  • The economics department in Louvain-la-Neuve provides a vibrant academic environment, with currently 18 faculty members and more than 40 PhD students.
  • The project is financed by an FSR grant from Université catholique de Louvain.
  • In addition to performing the tasks of the research project, the PhD candidate will improve her/his research skills by completing a doctoral training program in Economics and will actively participate in the research activities of the institute. To find a description of the rules of the Doctoral Program in Economics at UCLouvain, please see here and here.
  • The position does not come with any teaching duties.


  • The candidate holds (or will hold by September 2020) a Masters’ degree in Economics (minimum 5 years of study including Bachelors), which should be completed with honours. Preference will be given to students who have completed a second Master year with a research orientation and students who have taken courses in microeconometrics and/or written a thesis in Development Economics / Political Economy.
  • The candidate must have a deep interest in questions related to development, conflict resolution and peace building and a strong background in econometrics (especially methods such as DID, RDD and other policy evaluation techniques), and should be proficient in English.
  • Good programming skills would be an advantage (Python, R or other similar programming languages)
  • A knowledge of GIS techniques would be invaluable. If candidates don’t already have a background in GIS, they will be provided with intensive training to be brought up to speed.
  •  The candidate works independently, accurately and systematically.

General Conditions

  • The position is open starting October 2020 for two years, renewable for two more years subject to a successful mid-term evaluation.
  • Salary, net of taxes, is of the order of 1.900€ per month. The recruited person benefits from the complete Belgian social insurance scheme (health care, etc.) without additional expenses.
  • IRES will provide the PhD student with office space and computer facilities.
  • The candidate will have the possibility to spend time at Nova Lisbon (under Alex Armand’s supervision) as well as other top departments.


Interested applicants should email (with “PhD application: October 2020” in the subject line) a letter of motivation (max 2 pages), CV and academic transcripts (including exam results from Bachelors and Masters level) to no later than June 30th, 2020 (applications might be considered on a rolling basis). Applicants should also indicate the names and contact details of two academic references who would be willing to act as referees for the applicant. Submissions that do not abide by these instructions will not be considered.

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