PhD on Introduction of Artificial Intelligence in the Auditing Profession (V24.0139)

Job description

The graduate school Economics and Business has available a PhD position on the topic “Introduction of Artificial Intelligence in the Auditing Profession”

Artificial intelligence (AI) is becoming ubiquitous in our society and has begun to affect different professions. Audit firms have recently started to explore the use of AI to assist in their audit tasks—making this project very timely and relevant. Although the auditing community has welcomed AI as a promising way of increasing the quality and efficiency of the audit, it has also raised concerns. Compared to other industries, introducing AI in the audit profession provides a distinct challenge because it may disrupt auditors’ professional identity and their ability to exercise skepticism.

The aim of the PhD project is to identify how the introduction of AI affects auditors’ professional identity and skepticism, and how these effects can be managed. Exemplary research questions that will be addressed are: (1) How do auditors experience the normalization of AI in the audit practice? (2) How do the auditors’ trait skepticism, AI-related communication in the audit firm, and the auditors’ relational closeness to the AI project relate to the auditors’ professional identity? (3) How does the audit cycle and the tasks which are supported by AI affect the auditors’ alertness and professional skepticism?

The aim of the project will be achieved with a mixed-method approach incorporating (1) a longitudinal interview study, (2) a cross-sectional survey study combined with proprietary archival data, and (3) an experimental study using devices to measure the skin conductance response.

The PhD student will work within the Department of Accounting and Auditing. This PhD position is sponsored by the Foundation for Auditing Research (FAR) in The Netherlands and co-sponsored by the Faculty of Economics & Business of the University of Groningen. FAR will make it possible for the PhD candidate to work closely with Dutch auditing firms and also provides access to unique data to achieve the aims of the project. The PhD student will work in intensive exchange with Dr Lucia Bellora-Bienengräber, Dr Sebastian Firk, Dr Martijn van der Steen, and Dr Ann Tank (all from the University of Groningen). Moreover, there will be a regular exchange with Prof. Jennifer Joe (from Virginia Tech, USA).

Since its foundation in 1614, the University of Groningen has enjoyed an international reputation as a dynamic and innovative centre of higher education offering high-quality teaching and research. Balanced study and career paths in a wide variety of disciplines encourage the approximately 34.000 students and researchers to develop their own individual talents. Belonging to the best research universities in Europe and joining forces with prestigious partner universities and networks, the University of Groningen is truly an international place of knowledge.

The Faculty of Economics and Business has an inspiring study and working environment for students and employees. International accreditation enables the Faculty to assess performance against the highest international standards. It also creates an exciting environment of continuous improvement. FEB’s programmes, academic staff and research do well on various excellence ranking lists.


We are seeking a candidate with the following qualifications:

  • a solid training in research methods during a (Research) Master program or equivalent
  • a strong interest and versatility in empirical research, both qualitative and quantitative in nature
  • a Master’s degree with a focus on auditing, management control, financial accounting, financial management, (business) economics, organizational behavior, behavioral psychology, and/or information systems (or similar) with a record of high academic achievement
  • affinity (e.g., practical experience, curiosity) for auditing, management control, accounting, and/or information systems
  • excellent command of English in speaking and writing
  • excellent academic writing skills
  • excellent social and communication skills
  • eagerness to work in an international and interdisciplinary research team and to participate in national and international conferences and in doing research visits abroad
  • clear motivation, goal-orientation, and discipline for self-study.


Conditions of employment

We offer you in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities:

  • the gross monthly starting salary is € 2,770, which increases yearly to a maximum of € 3,539
  • based on the gross salary you will receive an additional 8% holiday allowance each year in May, and an additional 8.3 % end of year bonus in December
  • the full-time appointment is temporary for a period of in principle four years, under the condition of a positive assessment at the end of the first year.

Preferred starting date: 1 June 2024


The application package consists of the following separate documents:

1. A motivation letter
2. Your CV
3. A scan of your diploma including transcripts
4. Proof of English proficiency
5. Other relevant documents.

Documents 1-4 are compulsory. Please note that incomplete application packages will not be taken into account.

If you are interested, you can apply until 1 April 11:59pm / before 2 April 2024 Dutch local time ((Central European Time) by means of the application form (click on “Apply” below on the advertisement on the university website).

An assessment may be part of the application procedure, consisting of psychological tests and an interview.

The University of Groningen strives to be a university in which students and staff are respected and feel at home, regardless of differences in background, experiences, perspectives, and identities. We believe that working on our core values of inclusion and equality are a joint responsibility and we are constructively working on creating a socially safe environment. Diversity among students and staff members enriches academic debate and contributes to the quality of our teaching and research. We therefore invite applicants from underrepresented groups in particular to apply. For more information, see also our diversity policy webpage:…)rsity-and-inclusion/

Our selection procedure follows the guidelines of the Recruitment code (NVP): and European Commission’s European Code of Conduct for recruitment of researchers:

We provide career services for partners of new faculty members moving to Groningen.

Unsolicited marketing is not appreciated.


For information you can contact:

Please do not use the e-mail address(es) above for applications.


Application Deadline:
Monday, Apr 01, 2024
University of Groningen
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