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PhD researcher position on child sexual abuse and human trafficking

  • May 30, 2022

FRC is seeking to fill one full-time PhD researcher position as part of FRC’s team working in the HEROES project – Novel strategies to fight child sexual exploitation and human trafficking in crimes and protect their victims

You will be based at the Fundamental Rights Center at the Vrije Universiteit Brussels’ Faculty of Law and Criminology, but will (remotely) collaborate with colleagues all over the world (e.g., Spain, Brazil, Greece, Bangladesh, Austria)


FRC is looking for a motivated researcher, ideally with a university degree in law and/or experience in doing fieldwork or research on the topic of trafficking in human beings and child sexual abuse. Our working language is English, but a working knowledge of another language (especially Spanish, Portuguese, and/or Greek) is an asset. Besides, applicants who meet the following conditions will be ranked higher during the assessment procedure:

  • Masters’ degree in a relevant subject;
  • Good knowledge of trafficking in human beings and child sexual abuse;
  • Aptitude to do qualitative research;
  • Knowledge and experience with legal and multi-disciplinary research.


FRC expects the applicant to:

  • Have the ability work independently and in a multidisciplinary and international team;
  • Be able to cooperate with the other FRC members in other research group-related activities;
  • Develop excellent writing/presentation skills;
  • Work in a meticulous way and be able to manage deadlines.

We encourage candidates from minority groups to apply and have a recruitment process aimed at ensuring inclusion and diversity.


The contract is of limited duration (1 year), but renewal is possible. Candidates are expected to develop a PhD in law.


To apply, please submit the following documents as one Pdf file via email to and with the subject line ‘Application HEROES’:

  • A cover letter outlining how your professional experience and/or research experience is relevant for this project, your motivation, and eventually your interest in pursuing a PhD on topic related to human trafficking and child sexual abuse;
  • A detailed CV (including publication list, presentation and fieldwork experience, if available);
  • A transcript of your degree (and grades, if available);
  • A writing sample (max. 6.000 words in English, ideally an academic or research paper).


Deadline for application: 30th June 2022


Foreseen starting date: 15th September 2022


For inquiries, please get in contact with Carlotta and/or Julia.