PhD Position "Development of a Multi-Criteria Assessment Methodology for Integrated Resilient Cooling Strategies" KU Leuven Gent Construction TC, Ghent and Aalst Technology Campuses Belgium



The research group Sustainable Buildings at Technology Campus Ghent was created in 2008. The research can be grouped into 6 areas: 1. Energy performance and indoor climate - Interaction building and HVAC systems: studies the interaction between characteristics, use, energy performance and indoor climate of buildings on the one hand and the choice, design, operation and performances of innovative HVAC systems and lighting on the other hand. 2. Timber construction and use of organic fibres: investigates sustainability and durability of structures made from timber, bamboo and wood-based products as well as insulation materials made from natural fibres. 3. Social and ecological sustainability of buildings and communities: focusses on assessment and certification of social sustainability and zero carbon emissions on buidings, community and regional scale. 4. Life cycle analysis 5. Building Information Modelling - Improved process management: develops, improves and implements BIM-based workflows for all life-cycle stages of buildings 6. Commissioning, building management and monitoring This PhD fits within the first area.



An inexorable increase in energy consumption for the coolingof buildings, and the increase in overheating of buildings is caused byurbanisation and densification, climate change, elevated comfort expectations,and inappropriate architectural design practices. Meeting this challengerequires further development and application of low energy and low carboncooling solutions. State-of-the-art of individual energy-efficient cooling systems,their performances and guidelines are available. However, these coolingstrategies suffer from obstacles that keep them from mass application. Thisprojects focusses on the lack of guaranteed and measurable performancesassessment of integrated systems. The objective of this research is to developa multi-criteria assessment methodology for integrated resilient coolingstrategies in residential and school buildings. This knowledge will betranslated into guidelines for good design, commissioning and operation with recommendationsfor the integration of resilient cooling strategies.


This PhD is part of the international research collaboration Annex 80: Resilient cooling ( The overall aim of Annex 80 is to support a rapid transition to an environment where resilient low energy and low carbon cooling systems are the mainstream and preferred solutions for cooling and overheating issues in buildings. 


The candidate's duties will include the following

  •     You will actively participate in sub-task A: impact assessment (in which you will help develop a method) and sub-task C: field studies (in which you will carry out and process measurements).
  •     Performing analytical, numerical and experimental research
  •     Publication of research results in Dutch and English
  •     Presentation of research results at international conferences
  •     Defending a doctoral thesis under the supervision of the supervisors
  •     Educational support, among other things, in the form of supervising master's theses and working lectures.


  • You obtained (with minimum distinction) a master's degree in industrial sciences or a master's degree in engineering sciences with a speciality in civil engineering, electromechanics or energy. If you expect to obtain your degree in July 2019, you can start after obtaining your degree, but you can already apply now.
  •  You are interested in low-energy cooling techniques
  •  Writing skills and an active knowledge of English is crucial. Oral presentations do not scare you away.
  •  You are looking forward to an international project
  •  You have a strong analytical ability and a sense of synthesis.
  •  You can work independently, but also well in a team and show sufficient initiative.
  •  You are able to successfully complete a doctoral research under supervision.



We offer full-time employment. The necessary financial support for the first phase (2 years) of the PhD is provided. The candidate is expected to work out an FWO-SB (PhD fellowship strategic basic research) application with the support of the promoter, in which the candidate determines his/her own research emphases.



For more information please contact Prof. dr. ir. Hilde Breesch, tel.: +32 9 331 65 92, mail:


You can apply for this job no later than February 28, 2019 via the online application tool

KU Leuven seeks to foster an environment where all talents can flourish, regardless of gender, age, cultural background, nationality or impairments. If you have any questions relating to accessibility or support, please contact us at

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