Post-doc position

Post-doc position

Published Deadline Location
18 Mar 15 Apr Amsterdam

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Post-doc position: Biophysical modelling and optimization of deep brain stimulation treatment for Parkinson’s disease

Job description

Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is an undeniable clinical success in the treatment of movement disorders such as Parkinson’s disease. Yet, DBS exhibits a large outcome variability in individual patients and patients might suffer from stimulation-induced side effects. The sophistication of DBS systems is far ahead of the present understanding and clinical exploitation of the available stimulation features offered by the technology. Finding the right frequency, amplitude, and pulse width settings for an individual patient can be a cumbersome process. Within our European research consortium (Amsterdam, Luxembourg, Uppsala, Berlin), we aim to optimize DBS treatment through biophysical and statistical modelling, with a strong focus on electrophysiology (local field potential recordings) in Amsterdam.

We are looking for a postdoc who could contribute to one or more of the following research aims: 1) localizing spatial origins of LFP oscillations through inverse source modelling; 2) biophysical modelling of the effect of stimulation on electrophysiological activity; 3) applying optimization algorithms for optimal navigation through the stimulation parameter landscape. You are expected to take initiative in conducting the work and to present the project’s outcomes in scientific papers and at international conferences. There is an opportunity to supervise student projects, participate in data collection, and to take part in working visits to partners in the consortium. The work in this project will be conducted in close collaboration with the DBS Neurology group at the Amsterdam University Medical Centers location AMC. You are expected to regularly visit the AMC hospital for attending research meetings and to conduct parts of your work, as appropriate. The project will be supervised by Dr. Bernadette van Wijk (VU University Amsterdam) and Dr. Martijn Beudel (Amsterdam University Medical Centers).


Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU)


  • A PhD in human movement sciences or a related field such as biomedical, electrical, or control engineering, (computational) neuroscience, or artificial intelligence
  • Demonstrated affinity for the topic of deep brain stimulation and Parkinson’s disease
  • First authored articles in peer-reviewed international journals
  • Necessary theoretical and applied background to perform the work largely independently
  • Willingness and competences to work in a team

As a university, we strive for equal opportunities for all, recognising that diversity takes many forms. We believe that diversity in all its complexity is invaluable for the quality of our teaching, research and service. We are always looking for talent with diverse backgrounds and experiences. This also means that we are committed to creating an inclusive community so that we can use diversity as an asset.

We realise that each individual brings a unique set of skills, expertise and mindset. Therefore we are happy to invite anyone who recognises themselves in the profile to apply, even if you do not meet all the requirements.

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 1 year.

A challenging position in a socially involved organisation. On full-time basis the remuneration amounts to a minimum gross monthly salary of € 3.226 (scale 10-0) and a maximum € 5.929 (scale 11-11), depending on your education and experience. The job profile: is based on the university job ranking system (researcher 4/researcher 3) and is vacant for 1,0 fte. The initial employment contract will affect a period of 1 year with the intention of extension for another year (12 months).

Additionally, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam offers excellent fringe benefits and various schemes and regulations to promote a good work/life balance, such as:
  • A full-time 38-hour working week comes with a holiday leave entitlement of 232 hours per year. If you choose to work 40 hours, you have 96 extra holiday leave hours on an annual basis. For part-timers, this is calculated pro rata.
  • 8% holiday allowance and 8.3% end-of-year bonus
  • solid pension scheme (ABP)
  • space for personal development
  • a wide range of sports facilities which staff may use at a modest charge


Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Department of Human Movement Sciences

The department of Human Movement Sciences performs research on the human musculoskeletal system, on the way people move, and on how human movement can be influenced in the context of sports, health, physical education and rehabilitation. Our research is multi-disciplinary: we combine anatomy, physiology, psychology and biomechanics to understand and improve human movement.

We provide educational programs at the BSc and MSc levels in the same domain, with a strong emphasis on scientific training. In addition, we have a research-based PhD program.

The department has a strong commitment to theory development, and innovative research, but we also prioritize the societal value of our research and devote ample time and attention to translation of our research findings to promote their application in practice.

The department provides a vibrant climate with high quality teaching and research staff and PhD-students who are supported by excellent facilities (e.g., multiple labs for experimental research, equipment for movement analysis and physiological measurements, as well as high-quality engineering support to develop custom-made equipment and set-ups). We have a world-class reputation for our research and teaching, as indicated by for example a 5th place in the Shanghai ranking for sports science, high quality publications, and frequent international collaboration and exchange. Research and teaching have a strong interdisciplinary nature. The research program of the department is integrated in the research institutes Amsterdam Movement Sciences ( and Institute for Brain and Behavior Amsterdam (

Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences
Developing knowledge for an active, healthy and meaningful life: that is our mission at the Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences at VU Amsterdam. We maintain a broad focus on the fields of behaviour and health. Our teaching and research programmes are devoted to current developments in society. From healthy aging to e-health, and from training top athletes to social media as a teaching tool. We combine three academic disciplines: psychology, movement sciences and education. A multidisciplinary approach allows us to arrive at a better understanding of human behaviour and movement. Our aims are to help people live healthier lives, learn better and function better.

Are you interested in joining Behavioural and Movement Sciences? You are the kind of person who feels at home working in an ambitious faculty, with an informal atmosphere and short lines of communication. We offer you all the space you need for personal development. Together with your 630 colleagues, you will take care of about 4,200 students.

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam stands for values-driven education and research. We are open-minded experts with the ability to think freely. - a broader mind. Maintaining an entrepreneurial perspective and concentrating on diversity, significance and humanity, we work on sustainable solutions with social impact. By joining forces, across the boundaries of disciplines, we work towards a better world for people and planet. Together we create a safe and respectful working and study climate, and an inspiring environment for education and research. Learn more about our codes of conduct

We are located on one physical campus, in the heart of Amsterdam's Zuidas business district, with excellent location and accessibility. Over 5,500 staff work at the VU and over 30,000 students attend academic education.

Diversity is the driving force of the VU. The VU wants to be accessible and receptive to diversity in disciplines, cultures, ideas, nationalities, beliefs, preferences and worldviews. We believe that trust, respect, interest and differences lead to new insights and innovation, to sharpness and clarity, to excellence and a broader understanding.

We stand for an inclusive community and believe that diversity and internationalisation contribute to the quality of education, research and our services.

Therefore, we are always searching for people whose backgrounds and experience contribute to the diversity of the VU community.


  • Postdoc
  • Health
  • €3226—€5929 per month
  • Doctorate
  • 3879


Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU)

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Van der Boechorststraat 7, 1081BT, Amsterdam

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