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Postdoctoral fellow, Liveable Planet

The Faculty of Science, the Institute of Environmental Sciences are looking for a Postdoctoral fellow, Liveable Planet

2 maanden geleden


Einsteinweg, Leiden, Zuid-Holland
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht


Nitrogen is one of the most important pressures affecting nature quality and biodiversity. Nitrogen policy and effective measures to reduce the nitrogen pressure have so far not been successful enough. Various interests and obstacles play a role. Agriculture has the largest contribution to the nitrogen problem and burden on nature. In addition, biodiversity in the agricultural landscape has declined by 40% in recent years, affecting both nature and agriculture itself. It leads to more use of resources, which in turn increases the pressure on nature. Agriculture itself is stuck in a system, where the focus is on cost reduction and intensification to maintain their income. In order to lead the agricultural transition to a sustainable system, it is essential to develop knowledge and instruments. Within the Liveable Planet program of Leiden University innovative tools and instruments will be developed that can contribute to sustainable agriculture in balance with its surrounding.

The development of Key Performance Indicators as an instrument in agricultural transition trajectories is being worked on from different levels. It offers good prospects to develop agriculture integrally towards sustainable use of resources with a good businessmodel. However, it is important to set the right goals for the public values translated into policy goals. On the basis of performance in the realization of those goals, farmers/agricultural entrepreneurs can be rewarded. This is in line with a strong need from farmers: more clarity, an integrated approach and long-term goals instead of regulations. CML is involved in the development of KPI’s for agricultural systems and is looking for a postdoc that can support this development.

Key responsibilities

  • Contribute to the scientific development of KPI's and the collection of data taking into account the integral approach and the coupling between different spatial scales;
  • Coordinate the various developments of various KPI’s and bringing the developments together;
  • Keeping track of new developments around KPI's in the field, including international developments;
  • Derive goals, target values, and possible threshold values for the different public values such as biodiversity, climate, ecology and environmental quality and regionalize them;
  • Contribute to governance of KPI systems and it use for policy and market initiatives.


  • A doctoral degree (PhD) in environmental sciences, natural sciences, agriculture or a related field;
  • Extensive knowledge on natural processes (e.g., in biology, geography, chemistry or physics), combined with profound skills in modelling, scenario development, data science, modern programming languages and tools;
  • Demonstrated experience with spatially explicit and process-oriented modelling of environmental or agricultural systems;
  • Experience in gathering and analysing large data sets from public literature or databases;
  • Good social and communication skills. Interested in cooperation with many different parties;
  • Experience with presentation and practical knowledge transfer
  • Excellent report writing and presentation skills.
  • You must be proficient in spoken and written Dutch.


We offer a one-year term position with the possibility of renewal based on need, funding and performance to a maximum of three years. The salary range is from € 2.790,- to € 4.402,- gross per month (pay scale 10 in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities).

Leiden University offers an attractive benefits package with additional holiday (8%) and end-of-year bonuses (8.3 %), training and career development and sabbatical leave. Our individual choices model gives you some freedom to assemble your own set of terms and conditions. For international spouses we have set up a dual career programme. Candidates from outside the Netherlands may be eligible for a substantial tax break. For more information, see the website.

Leiden University is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from members of underrepresented groups.

Additional information

Enquiries can be made to Jan Willem Erisman, email j.w.erisman@cml.leidenuniv.nl.