PhD position within the Department of Psychology, University Jaume I, Castelló, Spain

Os reenviamos un mensaje sobre una convocatoria de contrato predoctoral en la Universitat Jaume I.

La Junta Directiva de la SEPEX

PhD position within the Department of Psychology, University Jaume I, Castelló, Spain. Applications are invited for a PhD position (3-4 yrs, full-time). The position will start on 01 October 2022.

Research environment

The PhD will take place at the Neuropsychology and Functional Neuroimaging research group, University Jaume I, Castelló, Spain ( They will join a vibrant community of cognitive neuroscientists, neuropsychologists, and neuroimaging researchers that form a supportive environment and training opportunities in neuroimaging clinical and healthy populations.


The main supervisor of this project will be Dr. Maya Visser. She has worked on several projects at international research centres in the Netherlands, UK and Spain ( The PhD student will receive training plans and specialized courses to support their research career. He/she is anticipated to publish several articles and attend national and international conferences to present the research outcomes. Finally, the PhD student will do a research stay of at least 6 months at an international research centre.


The objective of this fMRI project is to investigate the interaction between the semantic and emotion brain networks during social comparisons and when experiencing feelings of self-blame and guilt. These social behaviours are key elements in mood and anxiety disorders. The current PhD project will investigate whether aberrant interaction patterns between the semantic (anterior temporal lobes) and emotion (fronto-amygdala) networks underly high-trait subclinical anxiety, thereby advancing both basic and clinical science.

Eligibility & payment

Applicants need to be an EU passport holder. They should have a Master in Neuroscience or related, with competitive grades. They should have a proficient level in English and be willing to learn Spanish.

It will be a full-time three-year contract with social security, in line with Spanish stipend rates. It’s renewable for a fourth year given satisfactory progress. There are no tuition fees.

To apply

For further informal enquiries about the project and to apply for this position please contact Dr. Maya Visser ( Applications should include:

  • Letter of motivation (paragraph): Describe your previous research experience and explain why you are interested in this position
  • CV

The closing date for applications is Sunday, 5th June. Shortlisted candidates will be invited for online interviews at the end of June.

Reference list

The literature below is of interest to the current project:

  • Binney, R., & Ramsey, R. (2020). Social Semantics: The role of conceptual knowledge and cognitive control in a neurobiological model of the social brain. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 112(May), 28–38.
  • Duan, S., Lawrence, A., Valmaggia, L., Moll, J., & Zahn, R. (2021). Maladaptive blame-related action tendencies are associated with vulnerability to major depressive disorder. Journal of Psychiatric Research, 145, 70–76.
  • Lambon Ralph, M. A., Jefferies, E., Patterson, K., & Rogers, T. T. (2016). The neural and computational bases of semantic cognition. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 18(1), 42–55.
  • Lythe, K. E., Moll, J., Gethin, J. A., Workman, C. I., Green, S., Lambon Ralph, M. A., Deakin, J. F. W. W., & Zahn, R. (2015). Self-blame–Selective Hyperconnectivity Between Anterior Temporal and Subgenual Cortices and Prediction of Recurrent Depressive Episodes. JAMA Psychiatry, 72(11), 1119–1126.