Universiteit Leiden

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Assistant Professor International Children's Rights, with a focus on Global Health and Africa

Vacancy number
22-633 12907
Academic staff
Internal , External
Publication date
4 October 2022
Closing date
11 October 2022 Vacancy closed

The Department of Child Law of Leiden Law School and the African Studies Centre have a vacancy for a

Assistant Professor International Children’s Rights, with a focus on Global Health and Africa (0,5 fte)

Vacancy number: 22-633 12907

The discipline of children's rights holds a unique position in Leiden since Leiden University is one of the few universities that offers international children’s rights as an academic field of study. Leiden Law School’s Department of Child Law is a dedicated centre of expertise focused on children’s rights and child law. For this reason, students from over the whole world come to Leiden to participate on the English-taught Master of Laws Advanced Studies in International Children's Rights and researchers and professionals engage with the other academic activities including the annual summer school and the Leiden Children's Rights Observatory. The ultimate aim of Leiden’s Department of Child Law, which among others accommodates the UNICEF Chair in Children's Rights and the Chair of Children’s Rights in a Sustainable World, is to acquire knowledge about international children's rights and disseminate this throughout the world. The Department of Child Law participates in three different research programmes of Leiden Law School, including the multidisciplinary programme Effective Protection of Fundamental Rights in a Pluralist World, and in a number of Leiden University’s interdisciplinary research programmes.

The Department of Child Law aims to intensify its working relationship with the African Studies Centre (ASCL) of Leiden University. The ASCL undertakes research in Africa with the aim of promoting a better understanding of historical, current and future social developments in Sub-Saharan Africa. The current research program of the ASCL, Strident Africa: Societal and Environmental Change in the Context of 50 Centuries of History covers four main themes: ‘politics & security’ ‘society, religion and culture’, ‘economics’ and ‘history’.

The Department of Child Law aims to intensify its working relationship with the African Studies Centre (ASCL) of Leiden University. The assistant professor will work in a team with two other assistant professors, similarly jointly appointed at the ASCL, the Faculty of Social Sciences and the Faculty of Humanities respectively. This interdisciplinary team will collaborate within the framework of the University research profile (Domain Social Sciences & Humanities Cross-cutting) ‘Prosperity, participation and citizenship in a digital world’ (Welvaart, participatie en burgerschap in een digitale wereld) with a focus on frugal innovation in health services in Africa. This particular assistant professorship has its focus on issues around global health & children’s rights in Africa. We expect the assistant professor to collaborate with colleagues, other academic centers and societal partners already developing these diverse fields.


  • You will teach courses at Bachelor and Masters level, in the field of children’s rights, health and Africa;
  • You will supervise LL.M. and M.Sc. theses;
  • You will contribute to our academic output within the scope of the research programmes of the Department of Child and Law and ASCL, and more particular the interfaculty program Frugal Innovation in Health Services in Africa;
  • You will contribute to the development of the interdisciplinary Africa hub on prosperity, participation and citizenship in a digital world;
  • You may supervise junior research (for example Ph.D. candidates) within the scope of our research programme;
  • You will work towards acquiring significant external research funds within the scope of the research programmes of the Department of Child and ASCL, in one of the fields mentioned above;

Selection criteria

  • You hold a Ph.D. in International Children’s Rights;
  • You have completed an academic Master's degree in Law or Legal Studies;
  • You are familiar with the fields of (global) health in Africa, have research interests that complement the current expertise at our department and ASCL and have a keen interest in working with mixed method inter- or multidisciplinary approaches;
  • You are an innovative and inspiring teacher who knows how to engage a diverse community of (under)graduate students with an inclusive approach to teaching, and can contribute to ongoing efforts to decolonize the curriculum;
  • You have a promising publication record, notably international peer-reviewed publications and/or (forthcoming) monographs;
  • You are inventive, communicative and know how to collaborate with students and colleagues from a diversity of backgrounds (team player), and have networking skills that enable you to tap in and reach out to a network of diverse social partners;
  • You are willing and able to meet the requirements for a Basic Teaching Qualification (BKO) within two years if you do not already possess a Dutch University Teaching Qualification;
  • You have an excellent command of the English language. If you do not speak Dutch, the department will cover the costs and will provide time to follow language courses so you will be able to master a relevant level of linguistic competence (NT2) within a period of two years.

Considering the current composition of our staff, and our commitment to diversity, we expressly encourage people from groups presently underrepresented at our department to apply, especially candidates with an international profile.

Our Faculty
Leiden Law School is located in Leiden and The Hague. With more than 6500 students and around 1000 staff, it is one of the largest university faculties in the Netherlands. The faculty focuses on innovative multidisciplinary research and educational programmes that are constantly renewed in response to issues in society. Our faculty is large enough to make a difference nationally and internationally, yet small enough to offer personalised education. This is how we contribute to a safe and sustainable world, each and every day. For more information: Leiden Law School - Leiden University.

Terms & Conditions
We offer an – initial – eighteen months (18 months) position as Assistant Professor, starting at 1 November 2022. A permanent appointment may be possible after the temporary term depending on performance and available budget. Conditions of good performance, consistent with the selection criteria, are set at the beginning of the contract. The gross salary depends on qualifications and experience, and ranges between € 3.974 and € 5.439 per month for a full-time appointment (salary scale 11 Dutch Universities Conditions of Employment). 

Leiden University offers an attractive benefits package with additional holiday (8%) and end-of-year bonuses (8.3 %), training and career development and sabbatical leave. Our individual choices model gives you some freedom to assemble your own set of terms and conditions. For international spouses we have set up a dual career programme. Candidates from outside the Netherlands may be eligible for a substantial tax break. 

Leiden University requires teaching staff to obtain the University Teaching Qualification. If the successful applicant does not already possess this qualification or its equivalent, he/she must be willing to obtain this Qualification within two years

Within our policy framework on quality, almost all academic staff at the Faculty of Law have obtained a PhD degree and have met the requirements for the advanced research qualification. In addition, they make a significant contribution to the faculty research program. More information on the advanced research qualification and research programs of the Graduate School of Legal Studies can be found on: law.leiden.edu/research-leiden-law-school/graduate-school-of-legal-studies.html.

Further information about this vacancy can be requested by sending an email to Professor Dr Ton Liefaard, Professor of Children’s Rights and Head of the Department of Child (t.liefaard@law.leidenuniv.nl). More information about the Department of Child can be found here: https://www.universiteitleiden.nl/en/law/institute-of-private-law/child-law 

Diversity and inclusion are core values of Leiden University. Leiden University is committed to becoming an inclusive community which enables all students and staff to feel valued and respected and to develop their full potential. Diversity in experiences and perspectives enriches our teaching and strengthens our research. High quality teaching and research is inclusive.

Please submit online your application no later than 11 October 2022 via the blue button in our application system.

You can address your application to Prof. Dr T. Liefaard, Head of the Department of Child Law.

Applications should include:

  • a cover letter, consisting of a one-page statement of interest indicating the names of two referees. Referees will be contacted directly by the search committee;
  • a CV with a list of your publications;
  • a one-page research statement covering your current and future research plans;
  • two articles or papers, plus other possible formats you have been working on;
  • a one-page diversity statement in which you explain, based on your own experiences, how you aim for an inclusive teaching environment which benefits all students. You are encouraged to include sample of previous teaching experiences.

Enquiries from agencies are not appreciate

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