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MEDIUM - New pathways for sustainable development in China's medium-sized cities

Financial support to do fieldwork in China

Date limite : 29 septembre 2017
Contact : Resche-Rigon Florent Courriel
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Aire : Chine
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Géographie-cités, UMR 8504, in the context of the MEDIUM project, is offering a financial support to doctoral and postdoctoral researchers, or people conducting research in their professional context to do fieldwork in China – see profile below.

Entitled ‘New pathways for sustainable urban development in China’s medium-sized cities’, the MEDIUM project is funded by the European Commission under the EU-CHINA Research and Innovation Partnership. Starting in September 2015 for a period of three years, the project addresses urban sustainability from a socio-economic dimension and operate in fast-developing urban areas overlooked by scholars, in comparison with China largest cities. The case studies are Datong, Hangzhou and Zhuhai (the selected candidate(s) will choose their geographic location among those three cities).

MEDIUM gathers researchers with very different backgrounds and interests, among which urban governance and strategic planning, innovative clusters, environmental sustainability, land and housing policy, urban mobility, ICT and smart policy, migrant workers’ inclusion, etc.

Applying various approaches and methodologies, the project contributes to better understand urban development dynamics in Chinese medium-sized cities so as to inform decision-makers and economic actors. It will hopefully allow innovative ideas to emerge and give rise to alternative patterns of urban development; smart, sustainable and socially inclusive.

The project key actions include:
  • Facilitating European researchers’ mobility and train them as experts of urban China;
  • Training Chinese scholars to participatory approaches in urban planning;
  • Organising collaborative workshops involving stakeholders;
  • Establishing a dialogue between academic, political and economic communities.

MEDIUM is hosted by the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) and led by the research unit Géographie-cités (scientific coordinator Natacha Aveline and project manager Florent Resche-Rigon).

The consortium brings together the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) – Hangzhou Normal University (HZNU) – University Ca’ Foscari Venezia (UNIVE) – Aix en Provence Political Institute (IEP-Aix) – Spatial Foresight GMBH (S4S) – Lausanne University (UNIL) – Neuchâtel University (UNINE) – Sun Yat-sen University (SYSU) – Shanxi Datong University


If you are a Ph.D candidate with a scholarship, a postdoctoral fellowship or if you are conducting research on urban issues in your professional context (local governments, UN agencies, public or private research institutes etc.) you are welcome to apply.

Candidates working on city adaptation to ageing population, housing, habitat, or urban governance may be given priorities.

The ideal candidate(s) will have:

  • The nationality of one of the EU-28 Member States;
  • Background in geography, urban planning, urban engineering, political science, media/communication or other related social sciences ;
  • Quantitative or qualitative profile alike ;
  • Knowledge of China’s urban context ;
  • Advanced level in spoken and written English ;
  • Chinese proficiency will be a plus.

 In addition s/he will:

  • Commit to stay for a minimum of three months in China ;
  • Commit to start the fieldwork at the latest by May 31st, 2018 (funds are available immediately and until August 31st, 2018).


The selected candidate(s) will be awarded 2 100 euro/month spent in China. This amount is a flat rate covering all expenses, including the air fare from Europe and domestic travels in China, accommodation, visa expenses and any ancillary costs.

This does not constitute or can substitute a monthly salary. The selected candidate(s) must be able to prove that they will be paid by their host institutions.

S/he will be requested to work on one of the three MEDIUM case studies - Datong, Hangzhou or Zhuhai – and s/he will be supported by one of the hosting universities for any practical or scientific related issues.

S/he and will be referred to a Chinese professor, and will have the opportunity to interact and collaborate with the MEDIUM team in China and in Europe.

S/he will be required to acknowledge the project and the support of the European Union in all publications or public presentations made with the results of his/her fieldwork.

In addition, the selected candidate(s) will be expected to undertake the following tasks:

  • provide regular reports/materials on work progress for the purpose of project dissemination; 
  • support with the organization of the seminars and workshops if required;
  • support with the organization of the stakeholder meetings led by Spatial Foresight if required;


The application should include a cover letter, a curriculum vitae (including a list of publications), and one letter of reference. The two first documents must be provided in English. All documents should be sent before September 29th, 2017 to Natacha Aveline,, with copy to Florent Resche-Rigon,

Please indicate in the letter the length of the intended stay in China and the date of departure.

Several candidates may be selected for this scholarship.

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