Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
Department of Sociology
The University of Lucerne is the youngest university in Switzerland. Founded in 2000, it has four faculties and around 3,000 students. The Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences with its eight institutes and departments focuses on interdisciplinarity and innovation in research and teaching. The Faculty offers its almost 800 students a range of courses that are unique in Switzerland, placing great emphasis on excellent support and a close link between research and teaching activities.

Doctoral student position (100%), SNSF funded project "Digital Payments"

The Department of Sociology at the University of Lucerne invites applications for a 4-year position as a doctoral student researcher (100%). The position will be supervised by Prof. Sophie Mützel and is part of a larger project on "Digital payments: Making payments personal and social," funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation.

Starting date for the 4-year position is September 1, 2021, though there is some flexibility.

The project
The project combines economic sociology, platform studies, and the field of STS to empirically examine practices and future imaginaries of users, retailers, and the banking industry with regard to payment apps and the production of digital data in two contrasting cases: in Switzerland, where digital payments usage is low, and in Sweden, where digital payments usage is pervasive.

Your responsibilities
The doctoral student will investigate the use of digital payments in everyday life in Sweden by way of interviews and ethnographic fieldwork. The successful candidate is expected to carry out designated elements of the research project, author and present papers at national and international conferences, and write a monographic dissertation from the findings. The research project is one of four subprojects of the larger project on digital payments. The successful candidate is also expected to collaborate with other members of the project team, including on the dissemination of findings and organization of workshops. Place of work is Lucerne, Switzerland, with fieldwork in Sweden.

Your profile
  • The doctoral student will carry out qualitative, narrative interviews with users of digital payment apps in Sweden and observe how they interact in payment situations with others, e.g. retailers, banks, apps. Prior training in qualitative data collection and analysis is a plus. Local knowledge in Sweden is also a plus.
  • The ideal candidate should have a Master's degree in one of the following disciplines: sociology, communication studies, anthropology or related fields.
  • A prerequisite for the position is excellent command of Swedish (the language of fieldwork) and English. Knowledge of German is a plus. The team's languages are English and German.
  • Academic careers require an ability to work independently as well as to work with others, to organize one's time and workload, to travel abroad, and to talk in front of various audiences. The successful candidate should be comfortable with these aspects of the work.
The application
Applications should contain (1) a one-page cover letter, stating motivation and fit for position, (2) a complete CV with degrees obtained and names, affiliation, and email addresses of two academic references, and (3) a writing sample of research work (e.g. MA thesis). Please submit your application electronically via application button below .

Applications received before June 15, 2021 will be given priority. However, the position will be kept open until a suitable candidate has been found.

Candidates will be invited to online interviews during the week of June 28, 2021.