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PhD vacancy: Sustainability assessment tools for business model design

PhD projectSustainable business models are imperative for changing the unsustainable production and consumption systems that currently prevail. However, while …

7 maanden geleden


de Rondom, Eindhoven, Noord-Brabant
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
38 uur


PhD project
Sustainable business models are imperative for changing the unsustainable production and consumption systems that currently prevail. However, while positive claims about sustainability gains related to these business models can be widely found in literature, the actual assessment of these is limited. This hampers strategic decision making, business model development and performance evaluation. Integration of sustainability assessment tools is complex, as the more quantitative and fact-based tools might interfere with the highly value-based, interactive sense making process of stakeholders involved in the business model design process.
With this research project we contribute to the integration of sustainability assessment tools in the business model design process for improved strategic decision making. We will follow a Design Science research methodology. It will at least include literature study, in-depth interviews with business modelers and one or more case studies in companies.

Job description
You, as a successful applicant, will perform the research project outlined above in an international team. The research will be concluded with a PhD thesis. A small teaching load is part of the job.

Eindhoven University of Technology is one of the world's leading research universities (ranked by the Times Higher Education Supplement) and is particularly well-known for its joint research with industry (ranked number one worldwide by the Centre for Science and Technology Studies). The Department of Industrial Engineering & Innovation Sciences (IE&IS) of Eindhoven University of Technology is one of the longest-established engineering schools in Europe, with a strong presence in the international research and education community. The fields of Operational Processes, Innovation Management & Technology Entrepreneurship, and Sustainable Innovation are at the core of the undergraduate BSc program. The graduate programs (MSc and PhD) in Operations Management, Innovation Management, and Innovation Science attract top-level students from all over the world.

Research group
The PhD candidate will be located in the Innovation, Technology Entrepreneurship & Marketing (ITEM) group. The group is part of the School of Industrial Engineering of the department IE&IS. The ITEM group consists of about 25 FTE faculty members and 20 FTE PhD's who participate in and contribute to the research, education and service program of the ITEM group. This program is one of the leading programs in the world and emphasizes means for measuring and improving the process of conceiving, developing, and launching new products and businesses, and also managing these products and businesses post-launch.
The project is a cooperation with the Technology, Innovation and Society (TIS) group that focusses on understanding the development and use of technology in a business and societal context, especially for the energy transition and sustainable innovation context.


- You have a Master's degree in Innovation management, Innovation & entrepreneurship, industrial engineering, Sustainability assessment, Transition studies or a related field.
- You are enthusiastic, self-reliant and scientifically minded.
- You have a strong affinity with interdisciplinary research, as well as collaboration with companies to bridge between theory and practice
- You have strong analytical skills, and demonstrated competences for qualitative and quantitative research methods, preferably in a mixed-method design
- You have the potential and ambition to become a high-level scholar.
- You are able to work on a challenging topic that has both basic and applied research aspects.
- Your communication skills are excellent as is your proficiency in English (written, spoken) and your ability to collaborate in an international setting. Proficiency in Dutch is highly appreciated, as it is useful in cooperation with companies.


We offer a PhD appointment for a period of 4 years with a latest start date May 1st, 2019 and a gross salary in the range of €31.624,- €40.430, per annum (on a full-time basis), which includes 8% holiday allowance and 8.3% end of year allowance. Working at Eindhoven University of Technology means working in a professional environment that stimulates people to engage in innovation. We offer a broad package of fringe benefits, including an excellent IT infrastructure, child care, moving expenses, savings schemes, and excellent sports facilities.
The intended starting date for this position is May 1st 2019.

Additionele informatie

Your application must contain the following documents (all in English):
- Cover letter (1 page max), which includes a motivation of your interest in the vacancy and an explanation of why you would fit well for the project,
- Detailed curriculum vitae,
- List of courses you have taken in Masters and Bachelor programs (including grades)
- Results of a recent English language test, or other evidence of your English language capabilities
- Name and contact information of two references.
- MSc thesis (if you have already received your degree - else a draft version )
- Journal or conference papers (if any)

More information:
please contact dr.ir. Boukje Huijben (J.C.C.M.Huijben@tue.nl) or dr.ir. Arjan Kirkels (A.F.Kirkels@tue.nl).

Information about terms of employment can be obtained from Mrs. Susan Opgenoorth, personnel officer (pz.ieis@tue.nl). Further information about the Eindhoven University of Technology can be found at www.tue.nl.

The deadline for applications is 20 January 2019. We don't accept applications sent by e-mail. You can only upload the maximum of 5 documents of 2 Mb each. If you have more than 5 documents, you will need to combine them.
If you are interested, we invite you to apply as soon as possible by pressing the "apply now" button. Selection will begin immediately and continue until the positions have been filled.