PhD community

ASCA is home to more than 100 PhD candidates ( see list). Our PhD community is diverse in almost every respect. Some PhD candidates are directly funded by ASCA and the Faculty of Humanities, others by scholarships or loans from their home countries, and some combine their research with part-time jobs (within or beyond the university). Around half of our PhDs come from abroad. Together, these PhD candidates form an active and tight-knit intellectual community which is strongly committed to interdisciplinary research. ASCA’s PhD community is the backbone of our research school.

ASCA is organized in a non-hierarchical way. Every member—staff or PhD candidate—is invited to actively participate in and contribute to the program by initiating reading groups, lecture series, organizing conferences or workshops, and by making suggestions regarding the ASCA program and organization. You may always contact either the director, the vice-director or the managing director directly. In addition to these informal channels, bi-annual PhD meetings are organized for the entire PhD community.

ASCA’s director is Patricia Pisters. ASCA’s vice-director, Esther Peeren, is in charge of all matters concerning PhD candidates. Eloe Kingma is the managing director and can help you with practical matters and negotiating the bureaucracy of the UvA. All three of us can be contacted with questions or problems: p.p.r.w.pisters@uva.nl; e.peeren@uva.nl; asca-fgw@uva.nl.

PhD Representatives

ASCA is organized in a non-hierarchical way. Every member—staff or student—is invited to actively participate in and contribute to the program by initiating reading groups, lecture series, organizing conferences or workshops, and by making suggestions regarding the ASCA program and organization. You may always contact either the director or the managing director directly. In addition to these informal channels, bi-annual PhD meetings are organized for the entire PhD community. The report of the last meeting is below. Moreover, there is one PhD representative in the ASCA Board. Presently the PhD representative on the board is Laura Vermeeren (l.vermeeren@uva.nl).

Report PhD Meeting 14 December 2016

Present: Genevieve Costello, Alix Rubsaam, Florian Göttke, Arnoud Arps, Simone Kalkman, Karin Christof, Alejandra Espinosa, Wouter Capitain, Mimi Mitchell, Aris Emmanouloudis, Laura Vermeeren, Monique Peperkamp, Tom Kayzel, Becky Kazansky, Flora Lysen, Nadia de Vries, Arash Ghajarjazi, Divya Nadkarni, Geli Mademli, Nur Ozgenalp, Rowan Parry, Noortje de Leij, Andres Ibarra, Linda Xheza, Patricia Pisters, Esther Peeren, Eloe Kingma.

PhD Council

The PhD  Council represents the PhD candidates within the Faculty of Humanities. It meets about three times a year and communicates directly with the Research Council and the Dean of the Faculty. Laura Vermeeren represents the ASCA internally funded PhD candidates, and Aris Emmanouloudis represents the ASCA self-funded or externally funded PhD candidates.  Any issues that are larger than ASCA can be brought to their attention to be discussed within the PhD Council. Please contact them at: l.vermeeren@uva.nl, a.emmanouloudis@uva.nl.

PhD Survey 2016

Issues that PhD candidates suffer from according to the survey include: stress, overtime work, part time contracts, supervision, (lack of) diversity, not finishing on time, (lack of) career guidance. Although some suffer from stress, the main problem ASCA PhD candidates seem to have is the lack of clear information regarding their position. To solve this, Eloe will write a ‘welcome letter’ for PhD candidates with information regarding funding, office space, regulations, and other opportunities/obligations (see attached draft – we welcome additions and other feedback).

Evaluation of ASCA PhD candidates

All ASCA PhD candidates are evaluated annually. Internally funded PhD candidates have a meeting with their supervisor(s) and ASCA’s vice-director; self-funded and externally funded PhD candidates are evaluated by email, with a report also solicited from their supervisor(s). If any problems are signalled by either the PhD candidate or the supervisor, a meeting with ASCA’s vice-director is arranged. All PhD candidates are urged to contact ASCA whenever they have questions or concerns that their supervisor(s) cannot address.

Training Program

- ASCA Workshop 2017 on Uselessness will be held 28-30 March and is organized by Laura Vermeeren and Rowan Parry. For the 2018 workshop we are looking for a capable team of 2-4 PhD candidates.

- This academic year, the ASCA Theory Seminar was replaced by the three ASCA Skills Workshops and the Biennale Seminar. One of the reasons for this was to find out whether the Theory Seminar is still needed now that there are so many other ASCA seminars on offer (Cross Media, Film & Philosophy, Cities Seminar, Philosophy and Public Affairs, etc). It appears that many PhD candidates do feel the need for a more general ASCA seminar where they can meet PhD candidates from other departments and share their work and experiences. In the discussion it becomes clear that ASCA PhD candidates would like to have the opportunity to form a tighter community with each other.  A seminar, possibly more informal, where PhD candidates present their work could facilitate this. The ASCA directors will consider the options and come up with a proposal.

If anyone is interested in helping to set this up, please contact us.

- Reading Groups: if anyone is interested in starting a reading group, please send a description to Eloe so it can be announced in the ASCA newsletter and on the website. 

- Graduate School Program: make sure to fill out the assessment forms, as your feedback is taken very seriously.

Finishing Fellowships

This ASCA initiative has now been adopted by the Faculty. Recently, three ASCA members received funding to finish their dissertation (Florian, Adam and Evrim). The next deadline will be 1 October 2017 for fellowships starting 1 January 2018. Do not forget to apply if you have an almost finished draft of your dissertation. (Note: to be successful the dissertation should really be in the finishing stages; the selection committee will ask to see all written chapter

There is no time left for questions, drinks are waiting….

 

Published by  ASCA

20 December 2016