Programme Manager Renewable Plastics

Programme Manager Renewable Plastics

Published Deadline Location
21 Oct 4 Dec Wageningen

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Job description

Do you want to contribute to a healthy planet by creating renewable plastics? Are you experienced in leading a scientific programme in cooperation with a team of innovative scientists and business developers? We, Wageningen Food and Biobased Research (WFBR), have a vacancy Programme Manager renewable plastics. Will you be our new colleague?

What are you going to do?
The programme you will be leading is key in replacing the bulk of the current fossil-based materials and chemicals by circular and biobased alternatives, mitigating climate change and reducing persistent pollution (such as the plastic soup and microplastics). In close collaboration we leverage our knowledge and experience in developing and implementing solutions that make a real difference in society.

Examples we work on:
  • renewable building blocks for circular polymers, and biobased compounds. Circular plastics in textiles, composites, agricultural applications, and packaging, designed end of life properties, policy and strategy development for future circular plastics, biodegradability and data driven modelling;
  • process development for these materials using techniques that are common to the plastics industry, like injection molding, extrusion, film blowing, etc.
As programme manager you will:
  • lead the Programme Team in determining the strategy for tackling the key issues in the field of Circular and Biobased plastics meeting the demands from industry and society;
  • develop and execute a (long term) integrated programme plan;
  • acquire and initiate innovative international research projects;
  • manage a balanced project portfolio;
  • establish and manage a Programme Marketing and communication plan;
  • interact with various stakeholders from industry as well as society in an "agenda-setting" mode;
  • act as standard bearer and main spokesperson in this domain, backed by our renowned scientists.
As programme manager you are responsible for:
  • leading the programme team and acting as primary contact and spokesperson for the programme internally and externally; acting as key note speaker and thought leader at policy making or business events within and outside Europe,and helping to integrate the expertise of the scientists of Wageningen University & Research active in the domain of renewable plastics;
  • contributing to realization of the budgeted revenue and margin targets of the business unit;
  • jointly with our experts, translating societal and business needs into new high value project propositions and writing research project proposals to expand our knowledge portfolio;
  • building consortia of various national and international partners to work collectively on large, game changing, research projects to allow partners to accelerate innovation and create sustainable impact;
  • 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 and maintain a leading market position for the programme;
  • the IP position of the programme.
WFBR aims to develop technological solutions together with industry to accelerate the transition from fossil to renewable materials using resources in the most efficient way. In addition, we support governments and policy makers in their roles in developing policies for facilitating implementation of new value chains, technologies and necessary rules and regulations. Together with 3 other Programme Managers you are responsible for the Circular Biobased domain within WFBR. You are part of the Commercial team which consists of Programme Managers and Business Development Managers, and together with our leading scientists you are responsible for acquiring research projects for around 150 researchers.


Wageningen University & Research


You have
  • a Master of Science in a relevant domain such as material science, process engineering, chemistry, polymer processing;
  • people management skills and leadership qualities;
  • at least 5 years of experience in a commercial role;
  • experience in developing and/or executing collaborative research projects;
  • a broad network in relevant domains both in industry and governments;
  • 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;
Besides the above, you are fluent in English and Dutch.

Conditions of employment

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, up to 40 hours per week;
  • 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;
  • 8% holiday allowance in May;
  • a fixed December bonus of 4%;
  • excellent pension scheme.
In addition to these first-rate employee benefits, you will of course receive a good salary. We offer, depending on your experience, a competitive salary depending on your experience and in line with our Collective Labour Agreement. Additionally, a contract for 32 hours a week can be discussed.

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 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.


Wageningen University & Research

Wageningen University & Research
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, 7,200 employees (6,400 fte) and 13,200 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, so no employment agencies please. However, sharing in your network is appreciated.


  • Research, development, innovation
  • Engineering
  • max. 36 hours per week
  • Higher professional education
  • P1086273-1


Wageningen University & Research

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Droevendaalsesteeg, 6708 PB, Wageningen

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