PhD position in energy market design for a net-zero world

PhD position in energy market design for a net-zero world

Published Deadline Location
1 Mar 29 Mar Delft

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•    Do you want work on improving model-based decision support for the energy transition and energy market design?•    Do you have solid quantitative and analytical skills that you want to develop further?

Job description

In this PhD project, we draw inspiration from today’s overheated markets to study novel integrated energy market designs. We focus on the redesign of electricity, natural gas and hydrogen markets, ensuring they are fit for a net-zero world dominated by near zero-marginal cost variable renewable energy sources.  This requires developing efficient, integrated market designs, providing the required price signals for an efficient operation of and investment in our energy systems, across energy vectors.  At the same time, they should allow consumers and producers to hedge and share their financial risk, providing resiliency with respect to shocks. 

Possible research questions central to this PhD project include, but are not limited to, 
-    How do we ensure socially optimal levels of investment in integrated energy systems, considering risk-averse market participants and uncertainty? How should different technologies be remunerated? 
-    What kind of financial products allow hedging financial risks for consumers and producers at an acceptable cost?
-    With electricity taking up an ever growing share of the end-energy use and new types of large electricity users such as electrolyzers, how does this change the role of the different actors in the system? 

To address these questions, you are expected to continue the development of equilibrium and optimization models describing how energy markets coordinate actors’ decision making, leveraging a mix of techniques from operations research, engineering and economics.  

We are looking for a new PhD candidate to start as soon as possible. Your main supervisor will be Kenneth Bruninx, Assistant Professor Industry & Energy Transition. You will join a lively community of internationally renowned interdisciplinary energy researchers in the Department of Engineering Systems and Services. Our faculty hosts a diverse group of people from different countries and disciplines, and we welcome candidates that contribute to and enjoy this diversity. We expect that as part of your PhD you will take the lead on interacting and collaborating with other researchers at TU Delft, with research groups at other universities, and with industry and other stakeholders.


Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)


You must be able to demonstrate:

•    Masters degree in science, engineering or economics (must have been awarded by the agreed-upon starting date of the PhD)
•    Strong quantitative and analytical skills
•    Very good written and spoken communication skills in English (Dutch is not required)

Bonus points if you have:

•    Programming experience in Julia, Python or a similar language
•    Prior research experience, especially in energy system/market modelling or other energy-related research

Doing a PhD at TU Delft requires English proficiency at a certain level to ensure that the candidate is able to communicate and interact well, participate in English-taught Doctoral Education courses, and write scientific articles and a final thesis. For more details please check the Graduate Schools Admission Requirements.

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 4 years.

Doctoral candidates will be offered a 4-year period of employment in principle, but in the form of 2 employment contracts. An initial 1,5 year contract with an official go/no go progress assessment within 15 months. Followed by an additional contract for the remaining 2,5 years assuming everything goes well and performance requirements are met.

Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities, increasing from € 2541 per month in the first year to € 3247 in the fourth year. As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. The TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment with an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor. The Doctoral Education Programme is aimed at developing your transferable, discipline-related and research skills.

The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, discounts on health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. For international applicants we offer the Coming to Delft Service and Partner Career Advice to assist you with your relocation.


Delft University of Technology

Delft University of Technology is built on strong foundations. As creators of the world-famous Dutch waterworks and pioneers in biotech, TU Delft is a top international university combining science, engineering and design. It delivers world class results in education, research and innovation to address challenges in the areas of energy, climate, mobility, health and digital society. For generations, our engineers have proven to be entrepreneurial problem-solvers, both in business and in a social context.

At TU Delft we embrace diversity as one of our core values and we actively engage to be a university where you feel at home and can flourish. We value different perspectives and qualities. We believe this makes our work more innovative, the TU Delft community more vibrant and the world more just. Together, we imagine, invent and create solutions using technology to have a positive impact on a global scale. That is why we invite you to apply. Your application will receive fair consideration.

Challenge. Change. Impact!


Faculty Technology, Policy and Management

The Faculty of TPM provides an important contribution to solving complex technical-social issues, such as energy transition, mobility, digitalisation, water management and (cyber) security. TPM does this with its excellent education and research at the intersection of technology, society and policy. We combine insights from both engineering and social sciences as well as the humanities. TPM develops robust models and designs, is internationally oriented and has an extensive network of knowledge institutions, companies, social organisations and governments.

Click here to go to the website of the Faculty of Technology, Policy and Management.


  • PhD
  • Engineering
  • 36—40 hours per week
  • €2541—€3247 per month
  • University graduate
  • TUD03578


Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)

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