PhD in Multiscale modelling of the energy and material transitions (1.0 FTE)

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PhD in Multiscale Modelling of the Energy and Material Transitions (1.0 FTE)

PhD in Multiscale modelling of the energy and material transitions (1.0 FTE)

Job description
Today, society is facing a multitude of challenges to come to a sustainable society. Climate change is one of the most pressing challenges (next to biodiversity and water). Materials play a key role in the climate transition as materials production is responsible for a large part of global GHG emissions and yet are an essential part of many new technologies for the same
transition. It is expected that more efficient use of materials through a transition to a circular economy is hence an essential part of the climate transition. Yet the material system and (spatial) relation to the climate transition are not well understood.
In this project you will help develop a joint modelling approach that covers material- and energy flows to better model the impacts of material efficient and circularity strategies on energy use, GHG emissions and (key) environmental impacts. The approach will build on combining insights from life-cycle analysis (LCA) and material flow analysis (MFA) to energy modelling, to better understand the contribution of these strategies and technologies towards a sustainable production and consumption system. This will allow to (ex-ante) understand the contribution of circular economy approaches of different strategies, as well as potential bottle necks and show stoppers. The model will address the supply chains of (to be selected) key materials (e.g. plastics, selected critical materials) or products (e.g. packaging, renewable energy technologies) in a spatially structured model.
This will allow to connect the gained insights to other parallel projects within the programme that focuses on modelling the energy and climate transition. The PhD-project is part of the programme KCET, which aims to generate integrated insights for the energy transition between TNO, Utrecht University, and other partners. You will closely collaborate with other PhD researchers in this programme and staff from the participating institutions.

The ideal candidate has a background and proven interest in energy modelling, material flow analysis, life cycle analysis and/or circular economy approaches and technologies and a relevant Master's degree in e.g. engineering, energy and environmental sciences, etc. The project is multi-disciplinary in nature and affinity with or interest of working in an interdisciplinary environment is important.


You will be offered a temporary position (1.0 FTE), initially for one year with an extension to a total of four years upon a successful assessment in the first year, and with the specific intent that it results in a doctorate within this period. The gross salary ranges between €2,541 in the first year and €3,247 in the fourth year of employment (scale P according to the Collective Labour Agreement Dutch Universities) per month for a full-time employment. Salaries are supplemented with a holiday bonus of 8% and a year-end bonus of 8.3% per year.
In addition, Utrecht University offers excellent secondary conditions , including an attractive retirement scheme, (partly paid) parental leave and flexible employment conditions (multiple choice model). For more information, please visit working at Utrecht University .

About the organization

A better future for everyone. This ambition motivates our scientists in executing their leading research and inspiring teaching. At Utrecht University , the various disciplines collaborate intensively towards major societal themes. Our focus is on Dynamics of Youth, Institutions for Open Societies, Life Sciences and Sustainability.
Utrecht University's Faculty of Geosciences studies the Earth: from the Earth's core to its surface, including man's spatial and material utilisation of the Earth - always with a focus on sustainability and innovation. With 3,400 students (BSc and MSc) and 720 staff, the faculty is a strong and challenging organisation. The Faculty of Geosciences is organised in four Departments: Earth Sciences, Human Geography & Spatial Planning, Physical Geography, and Sustainable Development.
You will be employed at Utrecht University and carry out the research at both TNO and UU.

Additional information
For more information about this position, please contact Prof. dr. Ernst Worrell (Professor in Energy, Materials & Environment), via  or Prof. dr. André Faaij, via .

Everyone deserves to feel at home at our university. We welcome employees with a wide variety of backgrounds and perspectives.
To apply, please send your curriculum vitae, including a letter of motivation via the 'apply' button. 

The application deadline is
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