NIAS Individual Fellowships in Amsterdam
NIAS offers individual fellowships to scholars who wish to carry out advanced research in the humanities and the social sciences. For five or ten months, scholars are offered the time and space to work on a topic of their own choice. Both Dutch scholars and scholars from abroad can apply for a individual fellowship.
Individual fellowships are for scholars who have at least 3 years of post-Ph.D. degree academic experience and have already made a considerable contribution to their field. The same eligibility criteria apply to scholars with a Dutch and a non-Dutch affiliation, as well as the same selection procedure. The conditions of the fellowship, however, are different. More detailed information about what the individual fellowship for Dutch and non-Dutch entails, can be found below.
In order to be considered eligible for a fellowship by NIAS, the following criteria and rules are applicable:
- At least 3 years of post-Ph.D. degree academic experience
- Applicants must have an affiliation with a university or research institute during the period of the fellowship. The NIAS Fellowship does not constitute an employment relationship: the fellow is and remains an employee of his or her own university or research institute. NIAS is thus not obligated to make social insurance contributions or to contribute to pension or unemployment insurances
- Applicants can only apply for either an individual fellowship or a theme-group fellowship in a single year, not for both
- If applicants were granted with an earlier fellowship at NIAS, they can apply for a new fellowship 10 years after finishing the first fellowship
- A completed online application form with all requested documents uploaded
Applications are primarily evaluated on the basis of scientific quality, innovative character and originality. Scholarly achievements, grants, awards and publication record are also taken into consideration in the selection process.
In order to establish a diverse and coherent research group, additional elements that are taken into consideration by the NIAS directorate include the spread across disciplinary backgrounds, gender, age and geographical origin. In addition, the availability of facilities such as housing are also taken into consideration.
All correctly submitted applications are screened for eligibility on the basis of the abovementioned formal criteria. Applications that fit the formal criteria are sent to independent external reviewers. Applicants who do not meet the criteria are notified by email that NIAS does not intend sending their application to external reviewers for evaluation. Applicants can object to this decision by email. On the basis of the arguments given by the applicant, NIAS will decide whether or not to reconsider.
Based on the reviewers’ assessments, in combination with the abovementioned additional selection criteria, it is the director who ultimately decides which applicants will be invited for a NIAS Fellowship.
Please note that NIAS only offers a limited number of NIAS Fellowships each year and that the competition is fierce, which means that less than 10% of all applications is accepted.
What NIAS offers
Advantages of the Netherlands
- Internationally oriented country where almost everyone understands and speaks English
- Excellent scientific infrastructure – all universities listed in the 200 best universities of the world
- Many long-established universities with a solid tradition in the humanities
- Many unique collections and archives across the Netherlands
- Public transport system is extensive and easy to use
- Fast internet everywhere and excellent mobile phone coverage
Advantages of Amsterdam
- A dynamic scientific environment and home to two universities: the University of Amsterdam and VU University Amsterdam
- Houses unique archives and libraries, such as the “Special Collections” of the University of Amsterdam, the war archives of NIOD, Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies, and library of the International Institute for Social History (IISH)
- Two of the humanities institutes of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) as well as the Academy itself, are located just across the street
- All other Dutch universities, research institutes, laboratories, special collections and archives can be reached easily by public transport within hour a few hours
- A rich cultural life with famous museums, music venues and Art Galleries
- Diverse in terms of background, religion and orientation
Work at NIAS
A fellowship at NIAS offers you an environment conducive to bring academic work to fruition.
- NIAS is located in a 17th-century historical building in the heart of the old city centre of Amsterdam
- An office of your own
- Computer, international telephone connection, fast internet cable connection, Wi-Fi, Skype sets
- Library service that delivers books (almost) to your door steps
- Access to personal office 8.00 – 20.00 weekdays; 10.00 – 17.00 at the weekend
- Free coffee, tea and chilled water
- Hot lunch served 12.30 weekdays with good company and lively discussions
- International year group: 50% from abroad and 50% from the Netherlands
- English as working language at the institute
- Weekly academic seminars and regular social activities
"Freedom, creativity, and the sense that time is no longer the enemy but my friend"
The NIAS community is made up of fellows from the Netherlands, and abroad. Fellows from abroad are automatically eligible for accommodation. Fellows from the Netherlands who live more than an hour and a half by public transport from Amsterdam Central can apply for accommodation. Fellows from the Netherlands who live less than a 1.5-hours’ journey by public transport to Amsterdam Central, commute to NIAS.
Twelve furnished single occupancy studio apartments in the heart of Amsterdam
- Studios of about 80 m2 with a private bathroom and fully equipped kitchenette
- Each studio with unique décor in tastefully restored 17th-century building
- Large fully-equipped communal kitchen, lounge, dining room (and grand piano)
- Two minutes’ walk to NIAS
Six furnished two-bedroom modern apartments (for fellows with families)
- In a popular residential area of Amsterdam 20 minutes by tram to NIAS
- Modern light apartments, sitting room, two bedrooms, bathroom and fully equipped kitchen
- Nearby train, tram and bus links to centre and Schiphol; supermarkets, restaurants, outdoor market, schools, nursery, general practitioner and more
- Researchers who work at Dutch universities or institutes can apply for a replacement subsidy to cover the proportional costs of replacing the teaching duties stated in their university employment contract
- Researchers who work and live abroad and stand to lose income because of the fellowship can apply for a junior or senior stipend.
If your project is selected you will receive a preliminary offer email stating your specific arrangements. If you accept NIAS’ offer, all the terms will be confirmed in a Fellows Agreement contract, which will be sent to you to sign.
Fellows from abroad can apply for studio accommodation in the NIAS Fellows House. These studios are located next to the Royal Academy’s Trippenhuis Building at the Kloveniersburgwal. The subsidized rate for studio accommodation is €500 per month, which is deducted from the stipend. Fellows from the Netherlands who live more than 1.5-hour’s journey from a station in Amsterdam by public transport can apply for accommodation and an accommodation grant.
Family apartments in the Amsterdam area are available for fellows from abroad who need to bring their partner and/or children. These furnished two-bedroom apartments are located at Stadionplein in Amsterdam-Zuid. For fellows from abroad the subsidized rate for apartments is €750 per month, which is deducted from their stipend.
Please note: domestic animals are not allowed in the offices, studios or family apartments.
Travel expenses for arrival & departure
Fellows from abroad who have been granted accommodation are entitled to one economy class return ticket to and from Amsterdam including standard luggage allowance. The cost of excess baggage and travel insurance will not be reimbursed. If the return journey is made by car, €0.19 per kilometre can be declared. Parking costs incurred during the fellowship are not reimbursed. Family members’ travel costs are not reimbursed.
Fellows living in the Netherlands who have been granted accommodation (see above) are also entitled to one 2nd class return ticket by public transport from their home-town to NIAS Amsterdam, including standard luggage allowance. The cost of excess baggage or travel insurance will not reimbursed. If the return journey is made by car, €0.19 per kilometre can be declared. Parking costs incurred during the fellowship are not reimbursed. Family members’ travel costs are not reimbursed.
Fellows from the Netherlands who live less than 1.5-hours’ journey by public transport to Amsterdam Central are expected to commute to NIAS and receive travel expenses to cover either the cost of second-class return journey or a kilometre allowance of €0.19 per kilometre. Parking costs incurred during the fellowship are not reimbursed.
Please note that the arrangements described below might vary for co-sponsored fellowships. Please go to each specific co-sponsored fellowship page for details.
Fellows with a Dutch affiliation – Replacement grants
Teaching replacement grants can be up to €3,800 per month for senior fellows (10 years or more post-PhD research experience) and up to €2,600 maximum per month for junior fellows (post-PhD research experience less than 10 years). The grant is intended as a replacement subsidy to cover the hours of teaching as declared in the fellows’ employment contract. For example, a junior applicant with a 0.6-FTE teaching duty can apply for a replacement subsidy of €1,560 per month (0.6 multiplied by €2,600). Payment of the replacement subsidy will be made directly to the university or research institution. Research hours are not compensated.
Fellows with a non-Dutch affiliation – Stipend
NIAS offers stipends to researchers who work and live abroad if they stand to lose income because their home institution will not pay their full salary for the duration of their fellowship at NIAS. In such cases, a monthly stipend may be offered to make up the loss up to a maximum of €3,800 for senior fellows (10 years or more post-PhD research experience) and €2,600 for junior fellows (post-PhD research experience less than 10 years). Fellows who think they may need to apply for a stipend to supplement their income should state this in the online application. In some cases, an agreement can be made with the university or research institute where the fellow works, to provide a replacement grant instead of a stipend (to cover teaching obligations).
Applicants are sent a Preliminary Offer by email proposing the level of their stipend or replacement subsidy. If the applicant accepts the offer, all the terms will be incorporated into the official Fellows Agreement, a contract which is sent to applicants to sign before the fellowship.
Legal status and insurance
A NIAS fellowship does not constitute an employment relationship. During the fellowship, the fellow is and remains an employee of his or her own university or research institute. Subsequently, NIAS is not obligated to make social-insurance contributions or to contribute to a pension or unemployment insurance.
All researchers from abroad are responsible for arranging their own healthcare and liability insurance with adequate cover for the whole period of stay in the Netherlands. Non-residents who are not employed in the Netherlands will not be able to make any claims regarding the Dutch social security system.
The fellow is expected to be present full-time (38 hours per week) at NIAS and actively participate in seminars and other academic activities organised by NIAS as well as social activities. The rules of the institute state that a fellow is free to attend conferences and other events, and take leave, but their absence from the institute must not exceed a total of two weeks (including holidays) during a full-year period (one week for one semester). Not adhering to these rules can have financial consequences for either the fellow or the institute. For longer periods of absence per semester, prior written permission from the NIAS director is required.