Researcher in Chemical Engineering
University of Antwerp

Department: Chemistry/Biochemistry
Regime Full-time

Let’s shape the future - University of Antwerp

The University of Antwerp is a dynamic, forward-thinking, European university. We offer an innovative academic education to more than 20000 students, conduct pioneering scientific research and play an important service-providing role in society. We are one of the largest, most international and most innovative employers in the region. With more than 6000 employees from 100 different countries, we are helping to build tomorrow's world every day. Through top scientific research, we push back boundaries and set a course for the future – a future that you can help to shape. 

The Faculty of Applied Engineering has the following full-time vacancy: tenured senior academic staff in the field of chemical engineering applied to simulation and optimisation of recycling and formulation of organic materials.


You will contribute to the University of Antwerp’s three core tasks: education (40%), research (40%) and services (20%). Your role also includes organisational and managerial aspects.


  • You will provide high-quality education in the Chemical Engineering department of the Faculty of Applied Engineering (in the Bachelor and Master programmes Engineering Technology).
  • Your teaching role will evolve along with the study programmes and language certificates obtained. The courses you will teach may include an elective course on digital chemical industry (1MA, 3 ECTS), contributing by mutual agreement to the courses 6-Design of Experiments and International Study Trip (2 BA, 6 ECTS) and the coordination of 6-Bachelor's thesis (3BA, 9 ECTS) and 4-Scientific Project (2BA, 6 ECTS).
  • You will play a role in developing activating, student-centred and competence-driven programme components and study programmes.
  • You will professionalise your teaching by coordinating with the cell Innovation and Quality in Education (CIKO) and by attending relevant training courses.
  • You will supervise students and their Bachelor and Master dissertations.


  • You will independently develop scientific research in the areas of simulation, optimisation and modelling of synthesis, conversion and formulation of organic materials. This research will be framed in
    1. the development of sustainable, circular processes specific to the field of organic materials such as synthetic plastics, biopolymers and composites.
    2. integration of substantial amounts of existing empirical data with synthetic data to answer questions on complex material properties or structure-activity relationships.
    3. new developments on circularity of materials, linking molecular design and large-scale chemical processes at an early stage. This is done using molecular and kinetic simulation methods in combination with process simulation and optimisation algorithms. The research will be ideally integrated with the latest sustainability assessment methods. In this way, the industrial implementation of renewable or renewable materials can be accelerated.
  • You initiate new lines of research and coordinate the progress of scientific research projects. You also participate in ongoing research programmes.
  • Your research fits into the profile and vision of the research group iPRACS focusing on sustainability optimisation
  • You will acquire and manage national and international research funding.
  • You will publish in international journals and specialist literature.
  • You will develop an international scientific network. You actively participate in international conferences.
  • You will supervise PhD students and postdoctoral researchers.
  • You will be alert to new developments and industrial challenges in the field, with a view to valorising your research from both a societal and industrial perspective.


  • You will play a role in the provision of both academic services and service to society, within the institution and externally. You will participate in student recruitment, boards and committees, popular science communication, and so on.

Organisation and leadership

  • You will accept coordinating responsibilities in the areas of education, research and/or service provision and you will contribute to policy.
  • Your leadership style will be motivating and coaching. You will be attentive to your employees’ growth and development processes.


  • You hold a PhD in Applied Engineering, (Bio)Engineering, Science or equivalent.
  • You can demonstrate several years of postdoctoral experience (or equivalent).
  • Your research qualities are in line with the faculty and university research policies.
  • You have established an excellent research portfolio. Your publication output is of an international level and you have proven experience in setting up and carrying out research projects in your field. It is a plus if you can demonstrate that you can raise the necessary funds for your research.
  • Your teaching competences are in line with the University of Antwerp’s educational vision. You are motivated to develop your teaching skills further through the professionalisation opportunities available.
  • If you do not speak Dutch, the administrative language of the university, you should be willing to obtain a CEFR B2 level of proficiency in Dutch. As soon as you take on teaching duties as a programme component coordinator, you should be able to demonstrate a CEFR C1 level of proficiency in the language of instruction. The University of Antwerp supports international staff members through an integration trajectory and offers tailor-made language coaching in compliance with Flanders’ statutory language regulations.
  • You demonstrate leadership potential and organisational skills.
  • You demonstrate the ability to build a relevant social and industrial network.
  • You act with attention to quality, integrity, creativity and cooperation.
  • You have experience with advanced simulation and optimisation techniques, applicable to the field of chemical material and process development. Examples of such expertise include molecular dynamics, kinetic and/or thermodynamic models, as well as process simulation, e.g. Aspen Plus, and optimisation algorithms. Machine learning experience is required.
  • Ideally, you will have experience, for example through collaborations, in the synthesis and conversion of organic materials such as plastics or biopolymers, preferably in the context of the circular economy.

What we offer

  • We offer a full-time appointment as a member of the Senior Academic Staff (Dutch: Zelfstandig Academisch Personeel, ZAP). The level of your appointment (assistant professor, associate professor, professor or full professor) is determined on the basis of your professional experience and academic qualifications. Junior ZAP members are usually offered temporary appointment as a tenure track assistant professor for five years, which is then followed by permanent appointment as an associate professor. Appointment as an associate professor or higher leads to permanent appointment (tenure) after a maximum of three years. A favourable performance appraisal is always required for permanent appointment.
  • After a positive evaluation of your PhD project, we offer you an attractive starter package consisting of a four-year PhD project and € 25 000 in consumables to boost your research right from the start of your employment at the University of Antwerp.
  • Your gross monthly salary is calculated according to the pay scales for Senior Academic Staff.        
  • You will receive ecocheques, Internet-connectivity allowance and a bicycle allowance or a full reimbursement of public transport costs for commuting.   
  • The planned start date is 1 September 2024 or as soon as possible after that date.
  • You will do most of your work at Campus Groenenborger in a dynamic and stimulating working environment.
  • Find out more about working at the University of Antwerp here and discover all the other benefits.

Want to apply?

  • You can apply for this vacancy through the University of Antwerp’s online job application platform up to and including 24 January 2024 (by midnight Brussels time). Click on 'apply', complete the online application form and don’t forget to include the following documents: (1) your motivation letter, (2) the completed job application appendix for ZAP, (3) your academic CV.
  • The selection committee will review all of the applications as soon as possible after the application deadline. As soon as a decision has been made, we will inform you about the next steps in the selection procedure. If you are invited to the selection interview, you will be asked to propose a topic for a four-year PhD project. The job assessments and subsequently selection interviews with trial lessons will take place in March 2024.
  • If you have any questions about the online application form, please check the frequently asked questions or send an email to If you have any questions about the job itself, please contact Christophe Vande Velde (, tel. +32 3265 1846).

The University of Antwerp received the European Commission’s HR Excellence in Research Award for its HR policy. We are a sustainable, family-friendly organisation which invests in its employees’ growth. We encourage diversity and attach great importance to an inclusive working environment and equal opportunities, regardless of gender identity, disability, race, ethnicity, religion or belief, sexual orientation or age. We encourage people from diverse backgrounds and with diverse characteristics to apply.

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