Combined PhD position and university lecturer in life-cycle, circularity and sustainability assessment for the material and energy transition (0.8-1.0 FTE)

The energy and material transitions are crucial to enable pathways towards a sustainable and circular world. Do you want to do research and teach about this?
  • WO
  • Tijdelijk
Universiteit Utrecht


At the Copernicus Institute of Sustainable Development of Utrecht University, we are looking for an enthusiastic and ambitious colleague to further strengthen our group as a PhD candidate and junior lecturer. The position has a focus on life cycle, circularity and sustainability assessment for the material and energy transition.

It entails a unique position for 6 years in which research and teaching tasks are combined (50/50). This offers the opportunity to write a PhD dissertation and to develop educational skills leading up to a Basic Teaching Qualification (‘BKO’).

The energy and material transitions are crucial to enable pathways towards a sustainable and circular world. Within the Energy and Resources group of the Copernicus Institute we perform research and teach courses in several Bachelor's and Master's programmes on how to tackle challenges related to these transitions. For example, as part of the CIRCUROAD project, we perform research on how to replace bitumen with 100% sustainable binders, including bio-based and waste feedstocks, and how to improve their circularity and overall sustainability performance. We collaborate closely with Dutch and international industrial and societal stakeholders, research institutes and policy makers. As a Junior Assistant Professor you will contribute to developing new sustainable bio-based and waste-based binders for asphalt, and to other materials and energy technologies.


As PhD candidate, you are expected to contribute to the CIRCUROAD project and other projects related to the bio-based and circular economy. In addition, you are expected to contribute to education on life cycle, circularity and general sustainability assessment of energy and materials at the Copernicus Institute.

You will support teaching in the Energy Science Master’s Programme, Sustainable Development Master’s Programme, the Global Sustainability Science Bachelor’s Programme and you will supervise Bachelor's theses. Teaching topics include life cycle assessment and related practicals in software such as SimaPro, concepts with regard to the Circular Economy. You will also teach in other courses in the curricula mentioned above.

We gladly receive applications from you if you:
  • have a MSc degree in the field of energy science, industrial ecology, environmental sciences, or natural sciences;
  • have an interest in and passion for academic teaching (and preferably experience);
  • have a good understanding of life cycle assessment (LCA) and circularity, and metrics such as the Dutch milieukostenindicator (MKI);
  • ideally have knowledge about thermodynamics, physics and programming, e.g. in Python;
  • can demonstrate English language proficiency. Dutch proficiency would be advantageous;
  • are good at working in a team.


A better future for everyone. This ambition motivates our scientists in executing their leading research and inspiring teaching. At Utrecht University, the various disciplines collaborate intensively towards major strategic themes. Our focus is on Dynamics of Youth, Institutions for Open Societies, Life Sciences and Pathways to Sustainability. Sharing science, shaping tomorrow.

Utrecht University's Faculty of Geosciences studies the Earth: from the Earth's core to its surface, including man's spatial and material utilisation of the Earth - always with a focus on sustainability and innovation.
With 3,400 students (BSc and MSc) and 720 staff, the Faculty is a strong and challenging organisation. The Faculty of Geosciences is organised in four Departments: Earth Sciences, Human Geography & Spatial Planning, Physical Geography, and Sustainable Development.

For an impression of our university you can watch the Utrecht University Campus Tour on our YouTube channel.


We offer:

  • a position (0.8 - 1.0 FTE) for the duration of six years;
  • a full-time gross salary of €3,226 in scale 10.0 of the Collective Labour Agreement Dutch Universities (CAO);
  • 8% holiday bonus and 8.3% end-of-year bonus;
  • a pension scheme, partially paid parental leave, and flexible employment conditions based on the CAO.
In addition to the employment conditions from the CAO for Dutch Universities, Utrecht University has a number of its own arrangements. These include agreements on professional development, leave arrangements, sports and cultural schemes and you get discounts on software and other IT products. We also give you the opportunity to expand your terms of employment through the Employment Conditions Selection Model. This is how we encourage you to grow. For more information, please visit working at Utrecht University.

Meer informatie

For more information about this position, please contact Professor Martin Junginger (Professor Biobased Economy), via h.m.junginger@uu.nl.

Are you an international applicant? Our International Service Desk can answer your questions about living in the Netherlands as international staff.

The intended starting date is no later than 1 January 2024.