Postdoctoral Researcher: Sustainability Assessment of Pharmaceuticals

Postdoctoral Researcher: Sustainability Assessment of Pharmaceuticals

Published Deadline Location
29 Apr 31 May Nijmegen

Job description

Are you passionate about pharmaceutical sustainability? And do you want to deep-dive into methodological innovations to assess sustainability, tackle data gaps, spatial distribution challenges, and technological trends? Then join the Environmental Science cluster at the Faculty of Science as a postdoctoral researcher!

Pharmaceuticals are essential for human well-being. However, the production and use of pharmaceuticals can harm the environment, for example through the use of solvents and the emission of greenhouse gases in the production phase and the emission of pharmaceutical residues in the use phase. As a postdoctoral researcher, you will focus your research on the development, support and implementation of a methodology for determining the sustainability profile of pharmaceuticals.

The EU TransPharm project aims to support the transition towards the production and use of more sustainable pharmaceuticals. TransPharm will develop a new methodology for assessing the sustainability of pharmaceuticals over their entire life cycle, building on existing approaches of life cycle assessment (LCA). The methodology will integrate sustainability aspects related to the design, production and distribution of pharmaceuticals with those related to use and disposal, including mitigation measures. The methodology will build on the latest scientific insights and will be specifically tailored to the needs of potential users such as regulators, industry and the health sector.

As a postdoctoral researcher in this project, you will work on methodological innovations addressing specific challenges in the sustainability assessment of pharmaceuticals, such as (i) dealing with data gaps in life cycle inventory (LCI) data by means of upscaling laboratory and pilot plant LCI data based on knowledge of chemical production technology, (ii) dealing with the spatial distribution of the value chain when assessing the sustainability of pharmaceuticals, and (iii) dealing with technological innovations and other temporal trends when assessing the sustainability of pharmaceuticals.
You will integrate these methodological innovations into a comprehensive methodology for sustainability assessment of pharmaceuticals and work on the elaboration of specific case studies on the sustainability assessment of pharmaceuticals in order to demonstrate that the comprehensive methodology can be operationalised in practice, for example in procurement, market approval and production planning.

You will carry out the above-mentioned tasks in close collaboration with two PhD candidates and several other TransPharm project partners. You will be expected to closely collaborate with the PhD candidates and to support the senior researcher in coordinating the TransPharm research activities. As a member of the Environmental Science cluster, you will also be expected to participate in regular educational activities.


Radboud University


  • You should hold a PhD in the Environmental Sciences or a related field such as Chemistry or Production Technology, preferably with extensive experience in life cycle assessment.
  • You have analytical modelling skills, intrinsic motivation and good communication skills.
  • You have a good command of oral and written English.
  • Experience with environmental modelling, data analysis and chemical production technology is a plus.

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 2 years.

  • We will give you a temporary employment contract of 2 years.
  • Your salary within salary scale 10 depends on your previous education and number of years of (relevant) work experience. The amounts in the scale are based on a 38-hour working week.
  • You will receive an 8% holiday allowance and an 8,3% end-of-year bonus.
  • You will be able to use our Dual Career and Family Support Service. The Dual Career Programme assists your partner via support, tools, and resources to improve their chances of independently finding employment in the Netherlands. Our Family Support Service helps you and your partner feel welcome and at home by providing customised assistance in navigating local facilities, schools, and amenities. Also take a look at our support for international staff page to discover all our services for international employees.
  • You will receive extra days off. With full-time employment, you can choose between 30 or 41 days of annual leave instead of the statutory 20.

Work and science require good employment practices. This is reflected in Radboud University's primary and secondary employment conditions. You can make arrangements for the best possible work-life balance with flexible working hours, various leave arrangements and working from home. You are also able to compose part of your employment conditions yourself, for example, exchange income for extra leave days and receive a reimbursement for your sports subscription. And of course, we offer a good pension plan. You are given plenty of room and responsibility to develop your talents and realise your ambitions. Therefore, we provide various training and development schemes.


The main focus of the Environmental Science cluster at the Faculty of Science is on quantifying, understanding and predicting human impacts on the environment. Our research covers multiple pressures, species and spatial scales, and searching for overarching principles that can ultimately be applied to better underpin environmental management and biodiversity conservation.

Additional information

You can apply no later than 31 May only via the button below. Address your letter of application to Ad Ragas. In the application form, you will find which documents you need to include with your application.

The first interviews will take place on 12 June. You will preferably start your employment on 15 July 2024.

We can imagine you're curious about our application procedure. It describes what you can expect during the application procedure and how we handle your personal data and internal and external candidates. If you wish to apply for a non-scientific position with a non-EU nationality, please take notice of the following information.


  • Postdoc
  • Natural sciences
  • max. 38 hours per week
  • University graduate
  • 62.087.24



Houtlaan 4, 6525XZ, Nijmegen

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Application procedure

Application procedure

Make sure to apply no later than 31 May 2024 1:59 (Europe/Amsterdam).