Announcement 3 years research position in Anthropology of the Body -Lisbon 2019-2021

Dear colleagues,

This is an announcement for a 3-year career research position in Anthropology of Body, Medical Anthropology, Human Enhancement Technologies, beauty and health. The post will be based in Lisbon, Portugal ( as part of the FCT project «The Pursuit of Excellence. Biotechnologies, enhancement and body capital in Portugal», coordenated by Dr. Chiara Pussetti. 
I would be grateful if you could forward to potential applicants interested in joining the team.
Kind regards,


Vacancy: 3-year career research position

Location: Institute of Social Sciences, University of Lisbon, Av. Prof. Aníbal Bettencourt 9, 1600-189 Lisbon, Portugal.
Project: FCT “The Pursuit of Excellence. Biotechnologies, enhancement and body capital in Portugal” (2018- 2022)

Deadline for application: 14th Jan. 2019
The project: The technological capacity to transform biology, relying on advances in genetic engineering, pharmacology, bioengineering, cybernetics, and nanotechnology, has spurred a variety of devices to manipulate bodily forms and human functions that are commonly defined non-therapeutical “enhancement technologies”. Under this definition are included cosmetic biotechnologies as diverse as aesthetic plastic surgery, skin bleaching treatments, smart and life-style drugs, hormonal therapies and biohacking implants – that aim to ameliorate human characteristics, including physical appearance and cognitive performance. Prompted by economic analyses on the increase in cosmetic consumption of biotechnologies in Portugal during the global financial crisis, and spurred by empirical and bioethical studies on the risks, the limits and foresights of body manipulation, this research project aims to critically analyse enhancement technologies within their shifting economic and socio-historical contexts. The project EXCEL tackles enhancement technologies as bio-investment practices to promote personal competitiveness according to a logic of excellence, reading bodily and cognitive alterations as processes of self-making. Focusing on the Greater Lisbon area and noting the national and transnational circuits that affect this context, we aim to add to existing statistical and bioethical analyses qualitative, ethnographic data to unfold the complexity of these practices, by examining the relationship between subjectivity, body management and citizenship. The aim is to bridge the micro-dynamics of specific forms of bio-investment – exploring practices of and aspirations for biomedical self-making – with the genesis of new markets and transnational circuits of cosmetic medical tourism.

Keywords: Biotechnologies, Human enhancement, Body capital, Medical Tourism

Job description: The successful candidate will be in charge of developing fieldwork in the project in close collaboration with Chiara Pussetti. The successful candidate will develop an original project within the overall framework of the research program, including long-term ethnographic fieldwork on (aesthetic, cognitive, hormonal, sexual etc) enhancement technologies in Portugal. The candidate will be expected to actively participate in the program’s activities, including participation in team meetings and seminars.

Requirements: The successful candidate will hold a PhD degree in Anthropology, or a closely related discipline. S/he will demonstrate a strong interest in fields such as anthropology of the body, medical anthropology, social studies of beauty, ageing, and enhancement. S/he must be able to engage critically and creatively with relevant theoretical and conceptual frameworks within social science. S/he should have strong communication and organisational skills, be highly motivated, able to work independently and as part of a team, and have excellent written and verbal communication skills. Fluency in and English is essential. The successful candidate will have completed their PhD degree by the start of the appointment.
Application: Please find in attachment, in a single .pdf document, all the details of the vacancy.

Potential applicants are welcome to contact Chiara Pussetti for an informal discussion prior to submitting their application:



Aviso n.º 19008/2018 – recrutamento, em regime de contrato de trabalho em funções públicas a termo resolutivo certo, de um(a) investigador(a) na área da Antropologia Social e Cultural


Caras e Caros Colegas

Venho por este meio solicitar a divulgação do edital em DR para um concurso de seleção internacional para o recrutamento, em regime de contrato de trabalho em funções públicas a termo resolutivo certo (36 meses, nível salarial 33), de um(a) investigador(a) na área da Antropologia Social e Cultural, enquadrado nas temáticas da Antropologia médica, antropologia do corpo, do bem-estar e do aperfeiçoamento humano no âmbito do projeto de investigação EXCEL: Em Busca da Excelência. Biotecnologias, enhancement e capital corpóreo em Portugal, que eu coordeno no ICS-ULisboa.

Chiara Pussetti



Chiara Pussetti 


Researcher ICS/UL
Institute of Social Sciences

University of Lisbon
PhD University of Turim (Italy)

Perfil Scholar

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