Programme Manager Nature Based Materials

Updated: about 12 hours ago
Deadline: 16 Jun 2024

Your job

Would you be interested in leading the programme for Nature Based materials at the largest European Research organisation in that field?
Are you an excellent networker and eager to bridge the world-leading knowledge of Wageningen Food and Biobased Research to the needs of our customers and society?

Then you might be the candidate we are looking for!

To reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate climate change, society should gradually phase out the current fossil based chemicals and materials. While the energy sector can largely switch from fossil to renewable energy, it is impossible to decarbonise the materials sector. By harnessing the power of renewable biobased resources, we can ensure a sustainable, secure supply of feedstock for the chemicals and materials industry.

At Wageningen Food and Biobased Research we develop solutions, insights and applications for the circular and biobased society. Together with industrial partners we work on applied research which can create real impact tomorrow, aligning with the long term goals. Using our broad expertise and unique facilities we continuously develop new initiatives from four strategic programmes, covering the entire circular value chains from biomass to applications. The Nature Based Materials programme specifically aims to use  agricultural resources and other organic residues and convert these into non-food materials (construction materials, textiles, paper, cardboard etc.) using processes such as biorefinery, chemistry or biotechnology. Examples are hemp fibres in textiles and building materials, lignin binders in roofing and bioasphalt, palm oil residues for packaging and fertilizer. In all these developments we use an integral approach including aspects such as chain design, local conditions, economic feasibility, energy use of processing and environmental impact.

As a programme manager Nature Based Materials you will:

  • develop a national and international network of stakeholders and position WFBR as thought leader in this domain;
  • acquire and initiate innovative international research projects;
  • act as figure head and main spokesperson in this domain, backed by our renowned scientists.

This programme currently includes a project portfolio of approx. 50 projects and total annual revenue of approx. 6 M EUR. You report to one of the two Institute Managers.

As programme manager Nature Based Materials you are responsible for:

  • developing and executing a (long term) integrated programme plan and related innovation strategy;
  • leading the multidisciplinary programme team;
  • creating an agenda setting position in both science and society to realize impact, visibility and results by developing new propositions and project proposals and attract related funding;
  • acting as primary contact and spokesperson for the programme internally and externally and speak on conferences and events;
  • helping to integrate the expertise of the scientists of Wageningen University & Research active in this  domain of nature based materials;
  • managing the related WFBR IP portfolio and use it to create value and attract customers;
  • realizing the budgeted revenue and margin targets of the programme. Contributing to the (commercial) goals of Wageningen Food & Biobased Research. Together with our business developers and scientists continuously acquiring new projects to further grow the programme;
  • developing and maintaining a relevant business network to build and expand the brand name of Wageningen University & Research in general and Wageningen Food & Biobased Research in particular to create a market leading position for the programme.

Your qualities
  • a Master of Science in a relevant domain such as material science, mechanical or process engineering or chemistry;
  • excellent networking and people management skills;
  • at least 5 years of experience in a commercial role;
  • proven experience in developing and/or executing collaborative research projects;
  • a broad network in relevant domains both in industry and government linked organisations;
  • the ability to build vision and strategy and translate that into relevant propositions and projects;
  • the ability to interact with both colleague researchers, industry standard bearers and policy makers as thought leader;
  • fluency in English (mandatory) and Dutch (preferred but at least B2 level).
You will work here

 is one of the institutes of the WUR and employs 300 professionals. It creates societal impact through science-based projects and services using world-class facilities and multi-disciplinary expertises. We collaborate with industry and solve their complex problems by applying state-of-the-art scientific insights linked with thorough understanding of the challenges offered in daily practice. We are a preferred research partner in the food and biobased domain. We contribute from this position to the worldwide transition to a sustainable fossil free economy. WFBR is a research institute where employees love to work together within an innovative, inclusive and open culture.

We offer you

Wageningen University & Research offers excellent terms of employment . A few highlights from our Collective Labour Agreement include:

  • 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 hours by working more;
  • sabbatical leave, study leave, and partially paid parental leave;
  • 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.

Wageningen University & Research encourages internal advancement opportunities and mobility with an internal recruitment policy. There are plenty of options for personal initiative in a learning environment, and we provide excellent training opportunities. We are offering a multi-faceted 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 with your work you have a clear and positive impact on society. At WUR we work on the most pressing challenges of our time, like climate change and feeding the world in a sustainable way. 

Wageningen University & Research encourages internal advancement opportunities and mobility with an internal recruitment policy. 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 19th consecutive time.

Do you want more information?

For more information about this position you can contact Gerhard de Ruiter, business unit manager, telephone number: +31 317 489150.

For more information about the application process, please contact Paul Snijder, Recruiter, by e-mail: [email protected] .

Do you want to apply?
You can apply directly 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 is open up and until June 17th 2024.
Do not wait with applying; as soon as we receive good and qualified applications we will schedule job interviews.

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. A good example of how WUR deals with inclusiveness can be read on the page working at WUR with a functional impairment .

We are

The mission of Wageningen University & Research is “To explore the potential of nature to improve the quality of life”. Under the banner Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen University and the specialised research institutes of the Wageningen Research Foundation have joined forces in contributing to finding solutions to important questions in the domain of healthy food and living environment. With its roughly 30 branches, 7,600 employees (6,700 fte) and 13,100 students and over 150,000 participants to WUR’s Life Long Learning, Wageningen University & Research is one of the leading organisations in its domain. The unique Wageningen approach lies in its integrated approach to issues and the collaboration between different disciplines.

Read the 5 reasons why your future colleagues enjoy working at WUR and watch this video to get an idea of our green campus!

We will recruit for the vacancy ourselves and do not appreciate unasked for services from recruitment agencies. However, sharing in your network is appreciated.

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