Job Properties
  • Job Type
    Full-time Position
  • Category
    Research & Science
  • Languages
  • Experience Required
  • Degree Required
    • Province
    • Date Posted
      November 28,2021
    • Entrusting Package
    • JSS
    • VISA
    • IMG_6430
    • Career Consultation

    Postdoc Computational Modelling

    About the role

    The task of the computational modelling postdoc will be to quantitatively model the pathways between chronic stress and type 2 diabetes (T2D). In the spirit of complex system modelling, the question is how the onset of T2D is an emergent phenomenon of bio-physical processes coupled with social processes. A qualitative, conceptual model has been developed to guide the computational modelling. Particularly novel to the model we aim for is that we will link human biology at the cellular level (metabolism, immune response) to social processes (exposure to chronic stress) in order to better understand and exploit their interplay and establish how social processes “get under the skin”. Multiple models on subsystems are available in the literature, such as a model on HPA axis. The task of the postdoc is to integrate and extend these existing models into a comprehensive one, thereby increasing our understanding as to how stress increases the risk of T2D and how the increasing burden of T2D and inequalities therein can be reduced by tackling chronic stress.


    The candidate for this position has a PhD in Applied Mathematics, Complex Systems Science, Computational Science, Systems Biology, Statistical Physics or related disciplines, with a considerable mathematical analysis component and practical knowledge of Python and C programming languages, with training in computational modelling and simulation techniques, such as Monte Carlo sampling. The candidate has an affinity towards and good knowledge of biological and immunological processes at cellular level, as well as the influence of social factors such as stress on these processes, and preferably has experience in computational modelling of such processes. The postdoc enjoys interacting with scientists from different disciplines and tackling an interdisciplinary problem.

    Our offer

    • A jump start to your career in research work.
    • All te space for you to contribute shaping the care of tomorrow.
    • Working on large-scale and research project, with motivated colleagues from all over the world.
    • A full-time postdoc position is available for 2 years (with an evaluation after 1 year.).
    • Additional benefits include an 8.3% end-of-year bonus and 8.0% holiday pay.
    • In addition to excellent accessibility by public transport, AMC also has a sufficient number of parking spaces for employees.
    • Pension is accrued at Be Frank.

    About the project

    This full-time 2 year postdoc position based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands is embedded within the project ‘Understanding fundamental causes and effects of socio-economic inequalities in health using a systems science approach’, funded by ZonMw (Socio-economic inequalities in health - Institute for Advanced Study IAS - University of Amsterdam ( This is a collaboration between the Amsterdam UMC, the Computational Science Laboratory at the Institute for Advanced Study, and the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences, all at University of Amsterdam. The aim of this project (2018-2023) is to provide a fundamentally new understanding of the complexity and dynamics of the link between SES and associated resources to health, using a systems science approach. Using a combination of empirical (e.g. causal loop diagram - Crielaard et al. BMC Medicine 2021) and in-silico (computer simulation) studies (e.g. system dynamic model - Crielaard et al. Obesity Reviews 2020; as well as the model to be developed by the postdoc), we will identify leverage points in the system that have the potential to reduce health inequalities. We use type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2D) as a case study.

    About the workplace

    This computational modelling position is embedded in the Health Systems Complexity team at the Institute of Advanced Study of the University of Amsterdam (Health Systems Complexity - Institute for Advanced Study IAS - University of Amsterdam ( The team is an interdisciplinary group of researchers, based in the Amsterdam University Medical Centres (UMC) and the Computational Science Lab (CSL), devoted to the use of mathematical and computational methods to understand biomedical and social processes and their interplay. Additionally, expertise is present within Amsterdam UMC on the relevant potential pathways between stress and T2D, such as the HPA axis. Within CSL, expertise is present on complex system analysis and emergent phenomena, in order to analyse the role of bio-physical processes.

    Let's meet

    For further information about the position, please contact Prof. dr. Karien Stronks via

    For more information about the application procedure please contact Tanja Hart, Recruitment Adviser, via T: 06-21603178 or E:

    A reference check, screening and hiring test may be part of the procedure. Read hier whether this also applies to you.

    Acquisition in response to this vacancy is not appreciated.

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