Predoctoral Fellowship “Visualizing Science in Media Revolutions”

Bibliotheca Hertziana - Max Planck Institute for Art History

Job Type: Fellowship

Application Deadline: October 17, 2021

Predoctoral Fellowship “Visualizing Science in Media Revolutions”

For the Max Planck Research Group “Visualizing Science in Media Revolutions”, led by Dr. Sietske Fransen, the Bibliotheca Hertziana – Max Planck Institute for Art History in Rome (Italy) seeks to appoint:

A Predoctoral Fellow (m/f/d) (1-year appointment)

The Max Planck society is Germany’s premier research organization. The 86 Max Planck Institutes conduct research at highest levels, in the service of the general public, in the natural sciences, life sciences, social sciences, and the humanities. The Max Planck Research Group “Visualizing Science in Media Revolutions”, based at the Bibliotheca Hertziana in Rome, has been formed to examine how scientific practitioners visualize their ideas, illustrate their working methods, and communicate their observations, with a specific focus on the early modern period. We are especially interested in the impact that new media have had on processes of visualization and whether or not changes in these processes reflect new ways of thinking. A new visual culture emerged in the early modern period by those in pursuit of knowledge due to a variety of reasons. These included: new media (as a result of the printing press, and for example the scientific journal); new instruments for observing the world (such as telescopes and microscopes); and new ways of thinking about nature and the world. By comparing media, tools, and modes of communication in different fields of early modern science, such as medicine, architecture, astronomy, and mathematics, the members of this research group will investigate the impact of new media on the visual communication of science. As a group of historians with expertise in the study of media, visualization, and (the history of) science, the Research Group also investigates the impact of current new digital media and tools on (our own) working practices in the humanities and sciences. The group uses a wide variety of research methods and, in doing so, draws upon visual culture, art history, media studies, history of the book, cultural anthropology, and history of science and medicine. After an initial focus on the history of diagrams in premodern visual culture, the focus for the next 1,5 years will be media revolutions. More information on the research group can be found here.
Applications from candidates in every field within the history of art, history of science, medicine and technology, media studies, and medieval/early modern history are welcome. The working language of the Research Group is English. The positions may start in January 2021 or as soon as possible after.

Your profile:

A clear idea of how a year in Rome as part of this Research Group at the Bibliotheca Hertziana would benefit the PhD research
Excellent verbal and written knowledge of English
Prior knowledge of Italian and/or German is an advantage
Ability to reside in Rome during appointment
A willingness to play an active role in the research group’s events, which include seminars, reading sessions, and conferences

The application should include:

Cover letter in which the candidate explains how 12 months at the Bibliotheca Hertziana in Rome is essential for his/her PhD project, and how s/he expects to benefit from and contribute to the Research Group
Curriculum vitae
Description of research project (max. 1000 words)
Contact details of two potential referees (no letters)

Our offer:
The appointment is for 1 year. The position is full-time (39/40 hours per week) and is paid equivalent of 65% of the German Civil Service Collective Agreement (TVöD Bund), level E 13. Furthermore, we offer opportunities regarding work life balance as well as health promotion services.

The Max Planck society strives for gender and diversity equality. We welcome applications from all backgrounds. Furthermore, The Max Planck Society is committed to increasing the number of individuals with disabilities in its workforce and therefore encourages applications from such qualified individuals.

Candidates should submit their application in English on the following website between 17 September 2021 and 17 October 2021:

Posted: September 21, 2021