PhD: Conceptual design of sustainable biotechnological processes

PhD: Conceptual design of sustainable biotechnological processes

Published Deadline Location
22 Mar 25 Apr Delft

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Are you an interdisciplinary researcher and would you like to pursue a PhD in a highly collaborative environment to support the development of novel sustainable biotechnological processes?

Job description

The Department of Biotechnology at the TU Delft is currently running the Zero Emissions Biotechnology (ZEB) Programme aiming at developing more sustainable biotechnologies and bioprocesses. Within ZEB, 12 PhDs from different scientific domains (from micro-scale to meso-, & macro-scale) collaborate in an interdisciplinary and dynamic environment to realize sustainable production and zero emissions biotechnologies.

Within the BT Department/TU Delft, we are looking for a highly motivated candidate willing to pursue a PhD degree in the field of ‘Conceptual Design and Integral Sustainability Assessment of Novel Biotechnological Processes’. The candidate will conduct: i) early-stage sustainability analysis of promising biotechnologies; ii) Conceptual design, modelling and simulation of selected biotechnological processes and value chains; and iii) Techno-economic evaluations (TEE), Life-cycle Assessments (LCA), and Social impacts analyses (SIA). These activities require close collaboration and interaction, to gather information and provide timely feedback, with all PhD candidates and PhD supervisors within the ZEB programme. The PhD candidate will ultimately develop a strong background and a multidisciplinary expertise on fundamentals of biotechnologies, bioprocess design and integral sustainability assessment.


Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)


We are looking for an ambitious and motivated candidate who enjoys working in a multidisciplinary team of young researchers and who also wants to contribute to the development of more sustainable biotechnological processes. The candidate will gain a deep understanding of the fundamentals of biotechnologies and will use that knowledge, from a systems analysis perspective, to assess the large-scale performance and sustainability impacts (economics, environmental and social) of novel biotech-based supply chains.

The ideal candidate should have a strong background, with a MSc degree, in: (bio)process design, or biotechnology, or (bio)chemical engineering, or Life Science and Technology, or a related field. The ideal candidate should also be familiar with concepts and methods for techno-economic evaluation (TEE), while having some knowledge/experience on life cycle assessment (LCA) or social impacts analysis is a plus.

The candidate should be able to work in a transdisciplinary team, while taking initiative to both gather information from other ZEB PhD projects and provide timely feedback. Therefore, excellent proficiency in both written and spoken English skills are required.

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: 48 maanden.

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 Applied Sciences

With more than 1,100 employees, including 150 pioneering principal investigators, as well as a population of about 3,600 passionate students, the Faculty of Applied Sciences is an inspiring scientific ecosystem. Focusing on key enabling technologies, such as quantum- and nanotechnology, photonics, biotechnology, synthetic biology and materials for energy storage and conversion, our faculty aims to provide solutions to important problems of the 21st century. To that end, we educate innovative students in broad Bachelor's and specialist Master's programmes with a strong research component. Our scientists conduct ground-breaking fundamental and applied research in the fields of Life and Health Science & Technology, Nanoscience, Chemical Engineering, Radiation Science & Technology, and Engineering Physics. We are also training the next generation of high school teachers.

Click here to go to the website of the Faculty of Applied Sciences.


  • PhD
  • Natural sciences
  • 32—38 hours per week
  • €2541—€3247 per month
  • University graduate
  • TUD03667


Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)

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Mekelweg 2, 2628 CD, Delft

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