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Early Stage Researcher (PhD Student) position on ‘Socio-economic evaluation of the impacts of chemicals on natural capital and ecosystem services’

Do you have a passion for environmental economics and wish to understand the impacts on natural capital? Please apply at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.

3 maanden geleden


De Boelelaan, Amsterdam, Noord-Holland
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
40 - 40 uur
€ 2709 - € 4274 per maand


The PhD position is in the Institute for Environmental Studies (IVM), and within the framework of the Marie Skłodowska -Curie Innovative Training Network (MSCA-ITN) project ‘Best chemical risk assessment professionals for maximum Ecosystem Services benefit (PRORISK)’.

The PhD candidate will be employed by and enrolled in the doctoral programme at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, The Netherlands. International collaboration is foreseen, in particular with partners in the Czech Republic and the University of Waterloo, Canada.

PRORISK (www.prorisk-itn.eu) is a European Training Network funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No. 859891. The consortium comprises of 18 universities, research institutions, enterprises and partner organisations in 9 European countries and Canada, creating a novel platform for training a network of Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) in the field of advanced Environmental Risk Assessment (ERA). Research and training are provided through PhD programmes. The PRORISK training programme and secondments in international, interdisciplinary and cross-sectoral teams in academia, industry and regulatory bodies will enable ESRs to address exposure, ecotoxicology, ecosystem services, as well as assessment and modelling of risks and their socio-economic impacts. The ESRs within PRORISK will gain professional skills allowing them to develop and implement innovative ERA concepts and tools to link the effects of chemicals at different levels of biological organization to ecosystem services and determine the socio-economic values of related environmental impacts. Each ESR will complete a comprehensive personalized career development programme, with targeted training measures and participate in a range of network events. The ESR will benefit from interdisciplinary cooperation and interaction within the network, providing them with the best preparation for a successful career in either academia or industry.

Your duties
The PhD student, ESR14, will focus on

  • developing novel methods for socio-economic evaluation of chemical effects on the provision of ecosystem services and natural capital
  • quantifying potential economic, social and environmental costs and benefits associated with risk exposure
  • accounting for distributional impacts across different stakeholders in time and space
  • testing the impact of risk communication formats on public perception and valuation of chemicals and ecosystem services
SCA eligibility criteria
  1. At the date of recruitment the applicants for the MSCA fellowship must have no PhD and less than 4 years of full-time equivalent research experience from the award of the degree that entitles them to undertake a doctorate (either in the country in which the degree was obtained or in the country in which the applicant is to be recruited)
  2. The applicants must not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the Netherlands for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately before the recruitment date. Short stays, such as holidays, are not taken into account
These eligibility requirements are non-negotiable and ineligible applicants will not be considered. Eligible applicants can be of any nationality.


  • MSc degree in environmental or resource economics or a related field such as agricultural or health economics
  • interest in interdisciplinary research and risk analysis in particular is an important quality
  • have the ability to work independently and in collaboration with others
  • have strong oral and written communication skills in English


A challenging position in a socially involved organization. The salary will be in accordance with university regulations for academic personnel and amounts €2709 (PhD) per month during the first year and increases to €2,972 (PhD) per month during the third year, based on a full-time employment. The job profile: is based on the university job ranking system and is vacant for 1.0 FTE.

The appointment will initially be for 1 year. After a satisfactory evaluation of the initial appointment, the contract will be extended for another 2 years.

Additionally, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam offers excellent fringe benefits and various schemes and regulations to promote a good work/life balance, such as:
  • a maximum of 41 days of annual leave based on full-time employment
  • 8% holiday allowance and 8.3% end-of-year bonus
  • contribution to commuting expenses
  • optional model for designing a personalized benefits package
The period of appointment for the ESR is 36 months, starting 1 October 2020 or as soon as possible thereafter.

Additional information

Are you interested in this position? Please apply via the application button. Applicants should provide the following information in their application in English:
  1. cover letter, stating the PhD project you are applying for and detailing your motivation and background for applying for the project. Please indicate if you have applied for other PRORISK PhD fellowships (possible to apply up to three positions; indicate the preferences).
  2. a detailed CV including technical and analytical skills and publications if applicable.
  3. all academic level certificates (BSc and MSc) including university grades itemized by each course. Foreign documents should be sent as certified English translations.
  4. a synopsis (abstract) of the BSc and MSc thesis if applicable, or any previous research project.
  5. at least two professional referees (name, address, telephone and email).
Please upload your applications before 9 April 2020. A review of applications will run continuously as they are received. The short-listed applicants complying with the requirements will be invited for a personal or Skype interview in May or June 2020. When possible please take the dates into account when applying for the position.

Applications received by e-mail will not be processed.

Vacancy questions
For further information about the scientific content of the PhD position, please contact the principle supervisors: Prof. Roy Brouwer (rbrouwer@uwaterloo.ca) or Prof. Pieter van Beukering (pieter.van.beukering@vu.nl).

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