Assistant professor in Synthetic Biology (Tenure Track): Reprogramming microbial behaviour

Assistant professor in Synthetic Biology (Tenure Track): Reprogramming microbial behaviour

Published Deadline Location
10 May 5 Jun Wageningen

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Job description

Are you eager to build your own experimental group? Are you ready to deploy the tools and methods of synthetic biology for cellular reprograming? Are you ready for a career in Academia and to be part of our Tenure Track programme?

We are looking for researcher to set up an experimental group to complement research and teaching at the Laboratory of Systems and Synthetic Biology (SSB) at Wageningen University & Research (WUR).

What are you going to do:
  • you will lead your own experimental group and pursue your own research lines;
  • you will collaborate with a team of systems biologists to develop integrated experimental-computational research;
  • you will contribute to the management of the SSB Laboratory;
  • you will contribute to the education activities of the chair group, including the opportunity to develop courses, supervise thesis students and to lecture in English-taught MSc and BSc level courses. These courses include Introduction to Systems and Synthetic Biology, Toolbox in Systems and Synthetic Biology or iBiosystems, and participation with the Wageningen International Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) team.

We see opportunities for research in the areas of synthetic microbial metabolism and synthetic control of gene expression. We aim at accelerating strain development in Design-Build-Test-Learn (DBTL) cycles. We are looking for a researcher to develop synthetic biology methods for Building and Testing microbial strains and willing to closely collaborate with systems biologists developing methods for Design and Learn.

This Tenure Track position comes with a funded PhD position to start your group. The analytical and molecular biology laboratory is fully equipped and is staffed with a technician that will support both routine and scientific activities. Additional equipment and analytical methods are available through large-scale scientific infrastructures such as UNLOCK.


Wageningen University & Research


  • you are a researcher with a PhD degree and an internationally proven scientific record in synthetic biology, able to deploy experimental approaches to answer scientific questions;
  • you have experience with genome engineering techniques, strain development and phenotypic characterizations. We will value experience in lab automation and methods for high throughput screening and characterization;
  • you have a keen interest in collaborating with computational groups for the integration of computational and experimental methods;
  • you have clear ideas and plans on how to acquire funding for your research;
  • you have a University Teaching Qualification or are willing to work towards obtaining such a qualification. Experience in teaching activities and education innovation will be valued.

Of course, you are fluent in English at C1 level.

Conditions of employment

Wageningen University & Research offers excellent terms of employment. A few highlights from our Collective Labour Agreement include:
  • sabbatical leave, study leave, and partially paid parental leave;
  • 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 / holiday hours by working more, up to 40 hours per week;
  • 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.

In addition to these first-rate employee benefits, you will be offered a fixed-term, 7 year contract which, upon positive evaluation based on criteria elaborated in the University's Tenure Track policy, can lead to a permanent employment contract as professor. Depending on your experience, we offer a competitive gross salary of between € 3974,- and €5439,- to a maximum of €6181,- (associate professor position scale 13) for a full-time working week of 38 hours in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreements for Dutch Universities (CAO-NU) (scale 11).

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 18th 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.
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. For instance under the "30% rule", certain categories of international staff can receive tax exemption on approximately 30% of their gross salary.


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.

You will work here:
The laboratory of Systems and Synthetic Biology (SSB).
The mission of the SSB group is to contribute to the elucidation of the mechanisms underlying basic cellular processes, evolution and interactions among cells, organisms, and their environment and to translate this knowledge into applications of biotechnological, medical and environmental interest. The approach is characterized by combining expertise on specific biological systems with extensive expertise in methods for data generation, integration, and modelling. A key strength is the combination of fundamental computational expertise in systems biology with a laboratory that allows extending findings and testing hypothesis in a synthetic biology setting. The group further applies this approach to a broad range of systems through collaboration with experts. These systems encompass viruses, bacteria, fungus, microalgae, bacterial communities, host-microbe and host-microbiome interactions, and animals and humans. Additional information on the laboratory can be found at: and at Laboratory of Systems and Synthetic Biology

In this challenging career trajectory:
  • you acquire, lead and implement innovative and creative(inter-) national research projects in {name of chair group};
  • you collaborate with colleagues and supervise PhD students, BSc and MSc theses and you develop and teach courses;
  • you contribute to the further development of the chair group.

Tenure Track is a career path for scientists who pursue to excel in education and research. We seek to attract scientific talent and to stimulate and support their development.

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.


  • Lecturer; Assistant professor; Associate professor; Professor
  • Natural sciences
  • max. 38 hours per week
  • University graduate
  • P1224516-1


Wageningen University & Research

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Droevendaalsesteeg, 6708 PB, Wageningen

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