PhD position Regional and local energy transition (1.0 FTE)


Faculty of Science and Engineering


University of Groningen

Since its foundation in 1614, the University of Groningen has established an international reputation as a dynamic and innovative university offering high-quality teaching and research. With its 31,000 students and Nobel prize winning researchers, University of Groningen ranks among the top universities globally. It is situated in the vibrant capital of the northern Netherlands, Groningen.

The Faculty of Science and Engineering (FSE) is the largest faculty within the University. We offer first-rate education and research in a wide range of science and engineering disciplines, from classical disciplines such as mathematics, astronomy and mechanical engineering, to interdisciplinary fields such as artificial intelligence, pharmacy and nanoscience. Our community has an open and informal character with students and staff from around the world.

A PhD position is available at the Science & Society Group (SSG) within the Energy and Sustainability Research Institute Groningen (ESRIG) of the Faculty of Sciences and Engineering. SSG is responsible for education and research concerning science and society interactions.

Job description

You will focus on the way Dutch energy initiatives may influence the existing energy regime at several societal levels. You will study what can be learned from local and regional Dutch projects and initiatives, such as the RES-approach, and from initiatives in other European settings. The theoretical framework of this study combines insights from multi-level approaches of policy, innovation studies and STS. Your project is closely related to two projects, the ‘Buurtwarmte project’, focusing on local and regional district heating systems, and the ‘ESTRAC’ project, focusing on energy transition of Dutch regions. Studying local green gas and storage systems may also be part of the project. In the Buurtwarmte and ESTRAC projects TNO, Hanze University of Applied Sciences and various public and private partners participate, including innovative companies and energy cooperatives.

You will assess community related social and technological innovations on sustainable energy in the Netherlands and comparable European countries, and the way different societal levels are connected. Based on this study, you will suggest governance approaches for these types of innovations.


- a degree in innovation studies, Science and Technology Studies, transition studies, spatial sciences, governance studies or a related field
- familiar with interdisciplinary projects and with various theories and methods in social sciences.
- understanding of environmental or energy themes by experience or education and experience with interdisciplinary projects
- an excellent knowledge of Dutch and English as well as interpersonal skills and team spirit.

Conditions of employment

Contract length: 48 months.

We offer you, in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities:
- a salary of € 2,325 gross per month in the first year, up to a maximum of € 2,972 gross per month in the fourth and final year
- a full-time position (1.0 FTE)
- a holiday allowance of 8% gross annual income
- an 8.3% end-of-the-year allowance
- a position for four years; first, you will get a temporary position of one year with the option of renewal for another three years; prolongation of the contract is contingent on sufficient progress in the first year to indicate that a successful completion of the PhD thesis within the contract period is to be expected
- a PhD training programme is part of the agreement and you will be enrolled in the Graduate School of the Faculty of Science and Engineering.

The conditions of employment are available at the University of Groningen website under Human Resources:

Job Application

Do you meet our qualification criteria? If yes, your application should include:
- a letter of motivation
- a CV (including contact information for at least two academic references)
- transcripts from your bachelor’s and master’s degree.

Please submit your application until 6 October 11:59 / before 7 October 2019 Dutch local time (CEST) by means of the application form (click on "Apply" below on the advertisement on the university website).

We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our University. We are committed to building a diverse faculty so you are encouraged to apply. Our selection procedure follows the guidelines of the Recruitment code (NVP), and European Commission's European Code of Conduct for recruitment of researchers,

Unsolicited marketing is not appreciated.

Additional information

For additional information, please contact:

Dr Henny van der Windt
+315(0) - 363 22 80

In your application, please always include the job opening ID 219471

Extra informatie kan worden verkregen via een van de volgende links:

Science Society Group

Digital application form