Discovering the Deep Mediterranean Environment: A History of Science and Strategy, 1860-2020

The DEEPMED Project at the University of Sevilla (Spain), funded by an European Research Commission, is seeking one PhD candidate and one Postdoc under the supervision of Lino Camprubí.

Few geographical spaces have been more relevant to human life and more intensively theorized than the Mediterranean Sea. Today, this sea poses some of the most pressing challenges and opportunities for European economic, security, and environmental policies. Answers to how to manage the region depend on ideas and perceptions of integration and division of the basin and its peoples. But the Mediterranean as a spatial concept has radically changed in the last 160 years as humans have gained access to its depths, unveiling an underwater world to discover, exploit, and navigate. The Mediterranean has become a volume.

DEEPMED offers a historical account of the discovery of the deep Mediterranean environment. Its main hypothesis is that science and strategy jointly made the Mediterranean depths into an object of analysis and a political space, which in turn shaped science and strategy in the region. DEEPMED pursues three specific objectives: 1) identifying the actors and contexts that enabled perceptions and practices of depth in the Med; 2) describing how natural and human time-scales interact in this body of water, and 3) tracking key conceptual landmarks defining the uniqueness and representativeness of the Mediterranean volume vis à vis the global ocean.

DEEPMED represents a basin-scale approach to oceanic history that incorporates analyses of deep and bottom layers of the Sea to gauge the causes and effects of the historical emergence of depth. This requires an innovative interdisciplinary, transnational and digital methodology. The project identifies overarching trajectories of human engagement with Mediterranean depths from the mid-19th century to the present, including contrasting timelines and perspectives. The availability of digital tools for creating a database that facilitates geospatial and visual analyses make the project timely. The current security and environmental Mediterranean crises make it essential.

Available positions:

1 Post-doc: full time, 3 years

PhD (awarded by the time of appointment) in history or geography.

Preferably with linguistic competences relevant to Russia, the Aegean, or the

1 Doctoral candidate: full time, 4 years

Background in history, history of science and technology, STS, geography, or
international relations.

Preference give to candidate with a Master’s degree.

Preferably with linguistic competences in Arabic, Turkish and/or Hebrew.

S/he will work on a dissertation on 20th century Arabic scientific and strategic
visual representations of the deep Mediterranean

Both positions are scheduled to start on September 1st, 2022. The final salary is to be
determined later in the selection process.


To apply, please send the following documents (or questions) to:

  1. CV (listing education, positions, teaching experience, administrative experience and
    other qualifying activities, including a complete list of publications).
  2. Cover letter (with applicant’s qualifications and motivation for the position).
  3. Letter of recommendation.
  4. For the PhD candidate: transcript with Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. Applicants
    with education from non-European universities must attach an explanation of their
    university’s grading system.

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