LINGUIST List 26.3322

Thu Jul 16 2015

Support: English; French; German; Italian; Anthropological Linguistics; Discourse Analysis; Sociolinguistics / Switzerland

Editor for this issue: Erin Arnold <>

Date: 16-Jul-2015
From: Crispin Thurlow <>
Subject: English; French; German; Italian; Athropological Linguistics; Discourse Analysis; Sociolinguistics, PhD, University of Bern, Switzerland
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Department: Language and Communication
Web Address:

Level: PhD

Institution/Organization: University of Bern

Duties: Research,Project Work

Specialty Areas: Anthropological Linguistics; Discourse Analysis; Sociolinguistics

Required Language(s): English (eng)
                            French (fra)
                            German (deu)
                            Italian (ita)


Three-Year "Digital Discourse" Doctoral Fellowship
Funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation

Preferred Start Date: 01 October 2015

Salary/Stipend: CHF47,000 (€45,000/ US$50,000)

Professor Crispin Thurlow is interested receiving applicants interested in pursuing a PhD (2015 to 2018) while working on a research project titled Cultural Discourses and Social Meanings of Mobile Communication. Funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF), this project will form part of an interdisciplinary research programme about WhatsApp conducted by a network of linguists/sociolinguists at University of Bern, Zurich University, University of Neuchâtel and Leipzig University (Germany). While fulfilling the aims of the project (see below), there would be ample opportunity for you to pursue your own areas of interest within the field of digital discourse studies. Given the nature of the project, preference will be given to candidates who have a good grasp of German, French and/or Italian as well as English.

For more information about the project please email Professor Thurlow directly.

Conditions: To be eligible, you would need an MA or equivalent in a field like sociolinguistics, discourse studies, communication studies, linguistic anthropology, or cultural studies. You would need also to demonstrate (a) a track record of successful academic study and (b) a commitment to the investigation of digital discourse and new media language. The University of Bern is an equal opportunity employer: female candidates are particularly encouraged to apply.

Stipend/Salary: This doctoral fellowship is considered a 60% appointment. The current annual salary/stipend for an SNSF-funded doctoral candidate is CHF47,000 gross (US$50,000/ £32,000/ €45,000), increasing by CHF1,500 in each of the following two years. Salary payments do not include: social security payments and income taxes (about 20%), tuition fees of CHF200 per semester (same for Swiss/EU and international students), and personal health insurance (roughly CHF200 to 300 a month depending on age, etc.).

Application: To apply for one of this fellowship, please submit the following materials as a single PDF as soon as possible:

- A cover letter (addressed to Professor Thurlow)
- A Curriculum Vitae (aka resume) with citizenship details
- The names and email addresses of two academic referees (no letters needed now)
- A representative writing sample (e.g. a chapter from your MA thesis or a stand‐alone paper/essay)

In your cover letter, please explain what your writing sample is and why you have chosen to submit it. Please also explain who your referees are and why you have chosen to ask them for a possible recommendation. Professor Thurlow will start reviewing applications immediately and until 31st August 2015.

The Project: The Cultural Discourses and Social Meanings of Mobile Communication project will take a cultural approach to the language of mobile communication by asking: "How is mobile communication talked about in public contexts?" and "How do mobile communicators describe their own linguistic and communicative practices?" In other words, the focus here is on language about mobile communication as a way to illuminate broader media ideologies and language ideologies. Organized around a unique international media archive and an ethnographic survey of local users, the project will also ask: How are people's preferences and practices shifting? What are their interpersonal, affective and practical motivations for using one mobile technology over another? To what extent are these on-the-ground preferences and practices reflected in wider public discussions about mobile/online communication?

Applications Deadline: 16-Dec-2015

Mailing Address for Applications:
        Attn: Prof Crispin Thurlow
        Department of English, University of Bern
        Bern 3012

Contact Information:
        Crispin Thurlow

Page Updated: 16-Jul-2015