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PhD on nature-based coastal adaptation

Do you have a background in Earth and Environment, Biology, Civil Engineering or a related field? Are you fascinated by nature-based flood risk management, …

4 maanden geleden


Droevendaalsesteeg, Wageningen, Gelderland
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
38 - 38 uur


Do you have a background in Earth and Environment, Biology, Civil Engineering or a related field? Are you fascinated by nature-based flood risk management, ecosystem services and land and water management? And do you want to contribute to the restoration of ecosystems? Then, read on because you might be our ideal candidate!

The PhD candidate will focus on the development of a framework that facilitates nature-based coastal adaptation by restoration of (combined) targeted coastal habitats.
This will be done by comparing all co-benefits and trade-offs of nature-based building blocks. Other tasks our candidate will work on are:
  • The identification of smaller and more homogeneous units in terms of key biophysical and socioeconomic variables in large scale restoration pilots.
  • The development of a systematic downscaling approach to define NBS as building blocks of large scale restoration, enabling a refinement of each NBS and the optimisation of synergies among the blocks.
  • The development of an approach to restoration upscaling based on a) the type of existing or targeted ecosystems; b) financial and socio-economic conditions/ constraints; c) ESS quantification per NBS building block; d) objectively assessed coastal adaptation potential; e) quantitative contribution to climate mitigation (blue Carbon) at local and landscape scales.
  • The application of this new approach on several (international) pilot locations
The research is embedded within the chair Water Systems and Global Change (Water Systems and Global Change - WUR), which is led by Prof. dr. Carolien Kroeze. You will be co-supervised by dr. ir. Jantsje van Loon-Steensma. More info on our projects can be found here.


  • a successfully completed MSc degree in Earth and Environment, Biology, Civil Engineering or equivalent, with interest in flood protection, nature-based solutions, geography, landscape processes, planning and ecology;
  • excellent English language proficiency (a minimum of CEFR C2 level). For more information about this proficiency level, please visit our special language page
  • experience with and strong interest in nature-based flood risk management (either through work experience or specialization during your M.Sc)
  • experience with and strong interest in ecosystem services and land and water management (either through work experience or specialization during your M.Sc)
  • strong collaborative skills
  • excellent communication and writing skills (both in English and Dutch, in order to conduct research in close interaction with international partners and partners in the Netherlands and to communicate the results to an international audience)


Wageningen University & Research offers excellent terms of employment. A few highlights from our Collective Labour Agreement include:
  • sabbatical leave, study leave, and partially paid parental leave;
  • working hours that can be discussed and arranged so that they allow for the best possible work-life balance;
  • the option to accrue additional compensation / holiday hours by working more, up to 40 hours per week;
  • there is a strong focus on vitality and you can make use of the sports facilities available on campus for a small fee;
  • a fixed December bonus of 8.3%;
  • excellent pension scheme.
In addition to these first-rate employee benefits, you will receive a fully funded PhD position and you will be offered a course program tailored to your needs and the research team.
The gross salary for the first year is € 2.443,- per month rising to € 3.122,- in the fourth year in according to the Collective Labour Agreements for Dutch Universities (CAO-NU) (scale P). This is based on a full-time working week of 38 hours. We offer a temporary contract for 18 months which will be extended for the duration of the project if you perform well.

There are plenty of options for personal initiative in a learning environment, and we provide excellent training opportunities. We are offering a unique position in an international environment with a pleasant and open working atmosphere. You are going to work at the greenest and most innovative campus in Holland, and at a university that has been chosen as the "Best University" in the Netherlands for the 17th consecutive time.

Coming from abroad
Wageningen University & Research is the university and research centre for life sciences. The themes we deal with are relevant to everyone around the world and Wageningen, therefore, has a large international community and a lot to offer to international employees. Applicants from abroad moving to the Netherlands may qualify for a special tax relief, known as the 30% ruling. Our team of advisors on Dutch immigration procedures will help you with the visa application procedures for yourself and, if applicable, for your family.
Feeling welcome also has everything to do with being well informed. Wageningen University & Research's International Community page contains practical information about what we can do to support international employees and students coming to Wageningen. Furthermore, we can assist you with any additional advice and information about helping your partner to find a job, housing, schooling, and other issues.

Equal opportunities
Wageningen University & Research (WUR) employs a large number of people with very different backgrounds and qualities, who inspire and motivate each other. We want every talent to feel at home in our organisation and be offered the same career opportunities. We therefore especially welcome applications from people who are underrepresented at WUR. For more information please go to our inclusivity page. A good example of how WUR deals with inclusiveness can be read on the page working at WUR with a functional impairment.

Additional information

For more information about this position, please contact dr. ir. Jantsje van Loon-Steensma, assistant professor, tel: +31317 485812, or by email jantsje.vanloon@wur.nl.
For more information about the procedure you can contact Edgar Tijhuis, corporate recruiter, e-mail: edgar.tijhuis@wur.nl

Do you want to apply?
You can apply directly by uploading your CV and motivation letter, using the apply button on the vacancy page on our website which will allow us to process your personal information with your approval.
This vacancy will be listed up to and including February 4th 2022. The preferred starting date for this position is 1 March 2022.