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Simpson Center for the Humanities

Call for Applications: Sawyer Seminar Post-doctoral Scholar

The Simpson Center for the Humanities, in conjunction with the Department of Law, Societies & Justice, is offering a twelve-month, full-time post-doctoral scholar position from September 1, 2020 - August 31, 2021 in association with an Andrew W. Mellon Sawyer Seminar on Humanitarianisms: Migration and Care through the Global South, led by Arzoo Osanloo (Law, Societies & Justice) and Cabeiri Robinson (Jackson School of International Studies).  Applicants for the position should have demonstrated research interests and a current publication project related to at least one of the three thematic components of the seminar:

The Sawyer Seminar Series is made possible by a generous grant from the Mellon Foundation, with support from the Simpson Center for the Humanities and the Graduate School of the University of Washington.

Benefits for the post-doctoral scholar will include:

  • A twelve-month salary of $6,358/month or $76,296 for the duration of the appointment;
  • Insurance coverage for the scholar and dependents with medical, dental and vision eligibility and coverage as detailed here
  • Research funds of $3,000- for conference travel or other research related expenses;
  • Dedicated office space in the Simpson Center for the duration of the appointment.

Responsibilities for the post-doctoral scholar will include:

  • Contribute to the intellectual program of the Seminar Series by attending all lectures, workshops, and associated events;
  • Lecture on own research project;
  • Assist in organizing the lecture series and associated workshops (max. 5 hrs/wk);
  • Collaborate on the Spring 2021 publication by authoring or co-authoring a chapter and providing contributors with feedback;
  • Complete work on the publication Summer 2021.

Application materials should be submitted here:

  • Cover letter highlighting expertise and/or background in a topic related to humanitarianism within the Global South. Candidates should explain how their work will build on or engage with one of the three thematic components of the seminar (Decentering Migration, Decolonizing Humanitarianism; Comparative Humanitarianisms; and Rethinking the Human);
  • Proposal (between 5-7 pages in length) detailing the research project to be undertaken during the period and likely outcomes; and
  • CV (max 5 pages), including contact information for two scholars who are prepared to provide letters of recommendation;
  • Writing Sample (dissertation chapter or a published article);
  • We will seek letters of recommendation from the shortlisted candidates.

The ideal candidate will possess the following qualifications:

  • PhD (in hand by June 2020) in a Social Science or Humanities discipline;
  • Current project related to the topic of the seminar;
  • Specialization/research interests in humanitarianism within the Global South.

Applications received by January 15, 2020 will receive full consideration. Notification will be sent by March 30, 2020. The position is not renewable and is not eligible for tenure.

Application inquiries may be made with Arzoo Osanloo, Associate Professor of Law, Societies & Justice ( and Cabeiri Robinson, Associate Professor of International Studies (

** Post-doctoral scholars are represented by UAW 4121 and are subject to the collective bargaining agreement, unless agreed exclusion criteria apply. For more information, please visit the University of Washington Labor Relations Website.