Tailored opportunities: PhD position in sustainable plant protection at Leiden University

PhD candidate, Sustainable Plant Protection

Key responsibilities
Within the programme of the Dutch Science Agenda “Self Defense: Mimicking natural deterrent strategies in plants using adhesive spheres and volatiles” the PhD will be responsible for the  development and testing of bioassays with trichome mimics (adhesive spheres) for their efficacy in

reducing thrips damage on plants. The candidate will do so in close collaboration with PhD’s from WUR and RUG that will be responsible for the development of the mimics. Once optimal spheres have been developed

defense compounds and repellant volatiles will be included in the trichome mimics. Some of the research activities will take place in collaboration with Aeres University of Applied Sciences. The final goal of the programme is to develop a marketable product for sustainable plant protection against insect herbivores.

Selection criteria

  • Relevant biological background with basic understanding of chemistry;
  • Theoretical knowledge and practical experience with plant herbivore interactions;
  • A proven interest in plant horticulture;
  • Good team player willing to take the goals set by the programme as a lead for his work;
  • Innovative and Out of the Box thinker;
  • Excellent communication skills involving science, education, private companies and society;
  • Excellent English oral and writing skills;
  • Basic Dutch oral and writing skills.

Our organisation
The Faculty of Science is a world-class faculty where staff and students work together in a dynamic international environment. It is a faculty where personal and academic development are top priorities. Our people are committed to expand fundamental knowledge by curiosity and to look beyond the borders of their own discipline; their aim is to benefit science, and to make a contribution to addressing the major societal challenges of the future.

The research carried out at the Faculty of Science is very diverse, ranging from mathematics, information science, astronomy, physics, chemistry and bio-pharmaceutical sciences to biology and environmental sciences. The research activities are organised in eight institutes. These institutes offer eight bachelor’s and twelve master’s programmes. The faculty has grown strongly in recent years and now has more than 2,300 staff and almost 5,000 students. We are located at the heart of Leiden’s Bio Science Park, one of Europe’s biggest science parks, where university and business life come together.

For more information, see the website of the Faculty of Science.

Terms and conditions 
We offer a  full-time 1 year term position for initially one year. After a positive evaluation of the progress of the thesis, personal capabilities and compatibility the appointment will be extended by a further three years. Salary range from € 2.395,-  to € 3.061,-  gross per month (pay scale P in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities).

Leiden University offers an attractive benefits package with additional holiday (8%) and end-of-year bonuses(8.3 %), training and career development and sabbatical leave. Our individual choices model gives you some freedom to assemble your own set of terms and conditions. Candidates from outside the Netherlands may be eligible for a substantial tax break.

All our PhD students are embedded in the Leiden University Graduate School of Science. Our graduate school offers several PhD training courses at three levels: professional courses, skills training and personal effectiveness. In addition, advanced courses to deepen scientific knowledge are offered by the research school.

Leiden University is strongly committed to diversity within its community and especially welcomes applications from members of underrepresented groups.

Enquiries can be made to Peter Klinkhamer, email p.g.l.klinkhamer@biology.leidenuniv.nl. If you have any questions about the procedure, please contact Sylvia Maas, email jobs@biology.leidenuniv.nl.

To apply for this vacancy, please send an email to Sylvia Maas, email jobs@biology.leidenuniv.nl. Please ensure that you upload the following additional documents quoting the vacancy number:

Only applications received no later than November 10th can be considered.

  • CV;
  • List of courses and grading of the bachelor and master programme;
  • Pdf file of the bachelor- and master thesis;
  • Two references;
  • Statement of interest in the project and a statement about why you are an excellent candidate.    

Author: African Academic/Researcher

Science and Research by Africans for Africa

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