Research Projects
Vital Cities and Citizens

Research Projects VCC

Postdoc Projects

  • Making Rotterdam's children more resilient - Dr. Talitha Stam (Postdoctoral researcher Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences)

    Talitha Stam’s interdisciplinary research project scrutinizes, in close collaboration with social partner Samen Leren/Bureau Frontlijn (municipality Rotterdam), how inequalities in school performance develop through school-based and home-based parental involvement. For this, she combines quantitative and qualitative, including ethnographic, research methods.

  • Cities of Migration - Dr. Asya Pisarevskaya (Postdoctoral researcher Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences)

    The project of Asya Pisarevskaya, Peter Scholten and Zeynep Kasli studies how migration-related diversity is manifested and governed on the local level. They examine the underlying mechanisms of this relationship. The researchers aim to write a book with the case studies of cities for each of the determined types of urban diversity.

  • Straight outta Khartoum: Citizenship, migration and Sudan’s global music scene - Dr. Cathy Wilcock (Postdoctoral researcher International Institute of Social Studies)

    Taking Sudan as a case study, this project analyses the global reach of Khartoum’s music scene which includes numerous exiled artists in diaspora communities around the world. To what extent, in what ways, and with what effects are these globally mobile musicians contributing to the new forms of citizenship and political practices being produced during the revolution in Sudan?

  • Politics of (in)hospitality: queer tourists and queer refugees - Dr. Maja Hertoghs (Academic Researcher Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences)

    The PhD project of Maja Hertoghs focused on suspicion and affect in the closed world of the asylum procedure. This project extended into her postdoc research, in which focus lies on the contrasting ways in which queer tourists and (illegalized) queer refugees are ‘welcomed’ in cities branded as gay-paradise.

PhD Projects

  • Performing sensitive pasts: Exploring historical reenactments in Europe and Indonesia - Lise Zurné MA (PhD Candidate, Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication)

    Lise Zurné’s research focusses on the popular phenomena of historical re-enactments. It aims to explore how re-enactors engage and negotiate sensitive histories. In her research Lise particularly focusses on 20st century violence in Europe and Indonesia. The aim of the study is to understand the relationship between re-enactments and urban history.

  • Urban Tourism: Towards Sustainable Development Models - Shirley Nieuwland MSc (PhD candidate Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication)

    The research project of Shirley Nieuwland focuses on exploring sustainable urban tourism models in post-industrial cities that have seen a recent growth in tourism, like Rotterdam and Valencia. The project includes topics such as urban development, (urban) tourism, the sharing economy, the creative city and gentrification.

  • Urban Media Engagement - Anne van Eldik MSc MA (PhD candidate Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication)

    The research project of Anne van Eldik focuses on the social media use of young people in super-diverse cities and investigates how this is related to the construction and negotiation of their urban identity. The project includes research topics such as urban identity, social media engagement, social media influencers, and the super-diverse city.

  • Engaged Entrepreneurs - Dewi Kanters MSc (PhD Candidate Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences)

    The research project of Dewi Kanters focuses on entrepreneurs’ proactive behavior. Research questions are aimed at studying the impact of proactive behavior on outcomes such as the entrepreneurs’ work engagement, health and firm performance. These topics are of importance for ‘Vital Cities and Citizens’ since entrepreneurship is the corner stone of vital cities.

  • Refugee Entrepreneurship and Networking in Precarity - Saba Al Kuntar MA (PhD candidate International Institute of Social Studies)

    The research project of Saba Al Kuntar focuses on refugee entrepreneurship through the case study of Syrian entrepreneurs in Lebanon. The research explores the experience of refugee entrepreneurs in setting up businesses amid uncertain conditions. The project includes topics such as refugee urban economy, social networks, self-reliance approach.

  • Locating marginalized voices in human trafficking discourse: Learning from the experiences of urban subalterns in India - Jaffer Latief Najar MBA MSW (PhD candidate at International Institute of Social Studies)

    The research project of Jaffer Latief Najar focuses on the experiences of migrant sex and construction workers (urban subalterns) with India’s current anti-trafficking system. The project includes research topics such as agency and citizenship; and examines their role/existence in such experiences.

  • In search of trust: understanding and improving- Willemijn Bezemer MA (PhD Candidate Erasmus School of Social and Behavourial Sciences)

    The goal of the research project of Willemijn Bezemer is to analyse the effectiveness of different policing strategies that are aimed to increase mutual trust between the police officer and the public. 

  • Secondary education teachers’ and students’ engagement with cultural diversity - Zouhair Hammana MSc (PhD Candidate Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication)

    The research of Zouhair Hammana focuses on the engagement of secondary education teachers with students who have a cultural diverse background and vice versa. The study examines how teachers and students engage with the cultural ‘Other’, how they perceive themselves in relation to the cultural ‘Other’ and what kind of practices of openness they apply towards the ‘Other’.

  • Social stress, self-regulation and antisocial behaviour development - Miranda Lutz-Landesbergen MSc (PhD Candidate Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences)

    The project of Miranda C. Lutz examines the role of social stressors affecting the regulation of behaviour in children and adolescents. The goal is to answer whether deficits in the underlying mechanisms of self-regulation such as cognitive control lead to defiant social behaviour and determine how social stressors influence this relationship.

  • Competing conceptions of city culture and cultural diversity - Karen Klijnhout MSc (PhD candidate Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication)

    Karen Klijnhouts PhD project studies the urban cultural public sphere, examining the connection between city culture and cultural diversity. The main questions of this study are: how are conceptions about city culture and cultural diversity combined in discourses and how do these discourses sustain or challenge the boundaries of the established, publicly supported urban arts and culture scene? 

  • Cognitive and Linguistic Aspects of Social-media Usage - Arnout Boot MSc (PhD candidate Erasmus School of Social and Behavioral Sciences)

    The research project of Arnout Boot focuses on the cognitive and linguistic impact of social media. Research topics include (but not limited to) social-media usage, online language production, text mining, text analysis, information processing, fake news, opinion formation, memory, attention, and perception.

  • Imagining the Divided City - Emily Mannheimer MSc (PhD Candidate Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication)

    The research project of Emily Mannheimer examines how local tourism producers (primarily tour guides) are using tourism to redefine the image of Northern Ireland for a global audience. The project includes research topics such as tourism, identity, heritage, and post-conflict narratives.

  • The aesthetic dispositions of popular music consumers - Femke Vandenberg MA (PhD candidate Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication)

    Femke Vandenberg’s research project investigates the consumption of popular music in the Netherlands, with a focus on the audiences of nationally produced music. The project includes research topics such as cultural taste patterns, social class, social inequality, and the demonstration of nationalism through cultural consumption.

  • Antisemitism and Football Supporters in the 21st Century - Jasmin Seijbel (PhD candidate, Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication)

    As a PhD- candidate at the Erasmus University Rotterdam Jasmin Seijbel works within the project Sport and Nation. Her research involves educational programmes to prevent antisemitism in football stadiums. Jasmin collaborates with major stakeholders in the field, including the Fancoach project of Feyenoord and the Anne Frank House.

  • Talented Urban Youth - Tessa Visser MSc (PhD candidate Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences)

    The research project of Tessa Visser focuses on cultural and diversity and the transition from primary school to secondary school. Both qualitative and quantitative data are combined in a longitudinal effect study of an extracurricular intervention in primary school. Research topics include self-efficacy, parental involvement, and sense of belongingness.

  • Age-friendly communities for older migrants in the Netherlands - Warsha Jagroep MSc (PhD candidate, Erasmus School of Health Policy and Management)

    The research project of Warsha Jagroep focuses on older individuals with a migration background and the influence of neighbourhood attributes on their physical and social well-being. The results can provide the ingredients for designing and testing a multicomponent intervention, based on behavioural insights, that aims to increase older migrants’ well-being. 

  • Cities of Migration - Dr. Zeynep Kasli (Academic Researcher Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences)

    The project of Asya Pisarevskaya, Peter Scholten and Zeynep Kasli studies how migration-related diversity is manifested and governed on the local level. They examine the underlying mechanisms of this relationship. The researchers aim to write a book with the case studies of cities for each of the determined types of urban diversity.

  • Resilience to early family stress - Donna de Maat MSc (PhD candidate Erasmus School of Social and Behavioral Sciences)

    In this project, Donna de Maat examines resilience factors in children exposed to early family stress, such as socio-economic disadvantages or negative life events. The researchers aim to unravel why some children develop problems, while others keep functioning well and show ‘resilience’, after exposure to stressful family life.

Senior researchers (assistant/associate professors)

  • Organizing and managing the transformational dynamics in media and creative industries - Dr. Sven-Ove Horst (Assistant Professor Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication)

    Dr. Sven-Ove Horst is interested in understanding the way in which digital media, strategic management and entrepreneurship intersect in today’s conditions of rapid organizational and societal change. This knowledge can help individual entrepreneurs become more reflective of their own branding; it can help media organizations to create sensible strategies; and it can help to ensure more creative and sustainable societal developments.

Affiliated researchers

  • Historical Reenactments as Simulation of the Past: A New Paradigm for Research - Dr. Robbert-Jan Adriaansen (Assistant professor Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication)

    Rather than considering historical reenactments forms of historical representation, this studies them as forms of historical simulation. Applying play theory to the study of urban historical reenactments will show dynamics of identification and meaning making otherwise uncovered by traditional approaches to historical representation.

  • Locational choices, labour market and entrepreneurship in the fashion industry - Dr. Mariangela Lavanga (Assistant Professor Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication)

    Mariangela Lavanga’s research focuses on locational choices, labour market and entrepreneurship of a diverse range of creative professionals (e.g. designers, craftsmen); intermediaries and temporary clusters (e.g. trade events); local and global networks; sustainability and circular economy in the fashion industry.

  • Live music and urban development - Dr. Arno van der Hoeven (Assistant professor Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication)

    Arno van der Hoeven’s research focuses on the economic, spatial and sociocultural impact of live music on cities. Music venues and festivals are vital for urban life. As part of the POPLIVE project, Van der Hoeven studies how local live music ecologies can be supported.