Call - NIAS Urban Citizen Fellowship 2020 - 2022

The Urban Citizen Fellowship is established by the Municipality of Amsterdam and NIAS-KNAW to stimulate the use of advanced research in political deliberation and public policy making for the city of Amsterdam. This unique co-sponsored fellowship offers researchers the opportunity to carry out research projects around the concepts of Inclusivity, Democracy and Representation.

Proposals should offer perspectives on current issues with regards to living in a city and feeling like a citizen, thereby taking into account one or more of the abovementioned concepts. Based on the research findings, an important aspect of the Urban Citizen Fellowship is to provide insights and, if possible, advice for policy-making for the Municipality of Amsterdam.

Open: 15 January 2020 for 3 fellowships (April-June 2020, Sept-Jan 2021, Feb-June 2021)
Deadline: 15 February 2020 (12pm Dutch time) for the April-June 2020 Fellowship.
16 March 2020 (12 pm Dutch time) for the Sept-Jan 2020-21 and Feb-June 2021 Fellowship

Practical information

The Urban Citizen Fellowship is granted for a period of 5 months with the exception of the first Fellowship. Fellows are provided with an office, research facilities and daily commuting travel expenses or subsidised accommodation in Amsterdam. Fellows can also apply for a stipend or for funds to cover the costs of replacing their contractual teaching obligation (replacement subsidy).

Formal Requirements

  • Researchers in the field of urban sociology, political science, economics or law with a keen interest in interdisciplinary perspectives and knowledge of urban citizenship
  • At least three years of post-Ph.D. degree academic experience
  • The project proposal should be no more than a maximum of fifteen hundred words including footnotes, excluding bibliography and abstract
  • On the date the application is submitted, the applicant must have a valid employment contract (permanent, temporary or zero-hours contract) with a university or research institute, or must be registered for tax purposes as a self-employed, independent researcher (in Dutch ZZP). The same requirement holds for the duration of the planned fellowship period. Applicants with a zero-hours contract are not eligible for a stipend or teaching replacement
  • 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, or self-employed. NIAS is thus not obligated to make social insurance contributions or to contribute to pension or unemployment insurances
  • The applicant may not resubmit a project proposal that was previously rejected by NIAS
  • Applicants can only apply for one type of fellowship per academic year (i.e. either a NIAS Individual Fellowship, a co-sponsored individual fellowship, a NIAS theme-group fellowship, or a co-sponsored theme-group fellowship)
  • An applicant who previously held a NIAS fellowship may only apply for an NIAS Individual Fellowship if there are at least 10 years between the application date of the previous fellowship and the current application date
  • The application must be completed correctly and contain all the requested information and required documentation.
  • Applicants for the 2020-2021 fellowships should provide the names of four international experts in their field who would be suitable to approach as referees (co-authors or scholars who are actively involved in the currently proposed research project are not permitted)

How to apply

To apply candidates must submit a fully completed application form which can be downloaded from and sent to before the mentioned deadline.

Applications are evaluated on the basis of a) scientific quality and originality of the project proposal; b) relevance to public policy making for the city of Amsterdam; 3) the candidate’s academic achievements.


NIAS-KNAW offers residencies for scholars and artists, who seek to advance their thinking, increase their knowledge and share their insights with a broad, international, interdisciplinary audience. Besides being provided space and time to work, NIAS fellows become embedded in a strong community of radical thinkers, engaged in processes of collective learning. 


Afbeelding credits

Header afbeelding: Amsterdam

Icon afbeelding: NIAS urban citizen fellowship