Tenure Track Assistant Professor Experimental Nanophysics (1.0 FTE)


Faculty of Science and Engineering


University of Groningen

The University of Groningen is a research university with a global outlook, deeply rooted in Groningen, City of Talent. Quality has been our top priority for over four hundred years, and with success: the University is currently in or around the top 100 on several influential ranking lists.

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.

The position we offer will be embedded in the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials. The Zernike Institute’s strength lies in focused, curiosity-driven, symbiotic studies of functional materials involving researchers from physics, chemistry and biomolecular sciences. The driving force is the desire to understand how things work at the microscopic level, also known as the molecular scale. This is the realm of nanoscience and nanotechnology. In this field, the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials covers the whole chain from synthesising materials, building devices, characterising materials and devices, and investigating the theoretical foundation of their properties.

Job description

We are looking for an Assistant Professor who can strengthen our position in the field of experimental nanophysics with advanced spectroscopic and structural analysis methods, especially of phenomena occurring at surfaces. Surface physics, a subfield of condensed matter physics, has increasingly evolved from the characterisation of thin films and surfaces towards that of nanostructures. Surface science tools, including those employing synchrotron light, can determine the crystalline structure, the electronic structure (with respect to charge and spin), and the energy flow upon interaction with light pulses. Currently this field sees a strong development towards coherent imaging, ultrafast temporal and high spatial resolution. Key examples are ultrafast electron diffraction (also in combination with optical excitation and probing), time-resolved photoemission spectroscopy, and soft-X-ray coherent imaging. Notably, while collaboration is encouraged, too much overlap with existing research activities at the Zernike Institute that mainly use electron microscopy, scanning-probe techniques and molecular ultrafast spectroscopy is considered undesirable.

As an Assistant Professor you will:

• set up and develop your own research line and research group
• supervise PhD students
• acquire external funding
• promote the societal relevance of your research
• teach in and contribute to the development of the degree programmes of the School of Science and Engineering, especially courses with Physics and Applied Physics content
• contribute to the organisation of the faculty, for example by participating in working groups and committees, in the domains of teaching, research and management.

At the stage of Assistant Professor, 60% of your time is for research, 30% for teaching activities and 10% for organisational tasks.


We encourage you to apply if you have:

• a PhD degree in Physics, Applied Physics or a related field
• at least two years of postdoctoral experience outside of the Netherlands, preferably in a different country than where you received your PhD (can be compensated for after the appointment via extended research visits abroad)
• a relevant international network
• excellent research qualities, as shown by a publication record in international peer-reviewed journals and proceedings of renowned conferences
• a good track record in teaching, appropriate to your career stage
• demonstrable organisational competences
• cross-cultural sensitivity
• good command of spoken and written English

And you are:

• a team player with good communication skills
• able to acquire substantial research grants from external sources
• willing to obtain a University Teaching Qualification (Dutch: BKO) within three years
• able to speak the Dutch language or motivated to speak it within five years.

Conditions of employment

Contract length: 84 months.

We offer you in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities:

• a salary, depending on qualifications and work experience, from € 3,746 (salary scale 11) up to a maximum of € 5,826 gross per month (salary scale 12 depending on your career stage) for a full-time position
• a holiday allowance of 8% gross annual income and an 8.3% end-of-the-year allowance
• a pension scheme
• maternity and parental leave
• a full-time position as Assistant Professor with the possibility to work part-time (0.9 FTE or 0.8 FTE)
• a mentor programme and a broad range of opportunities for personal development
• dual career support for partners of new faculty members moving to Groningen.

Consider our website for more information about the working conditions at the University of Groningen: https://www.rug.nl/about-us/work-with-us/that-is-why/

As an Assistant Professor, you will enter a tenure track that, if followed successfully, will lead to a Full Professorship in approximately 10 years. In case of a full-time contract, you will initially be appointed for 7 years and your performance will be assessed after 5 years. This moment may be extended with at most one year in case of a life event (e.g. prolonged illness or maternity leave). If your assessment is positive, you will get a tenured appointment as an Associate Professor. After another 4 to 7 years, you will be assessed for promotion to the position of Full Professor. Please consider Career Paths in Science for a complete description of our tenure track system as well as the criteria for promotion: https://www.rug.nl/fse/organization/vacatures/vacatures/career-paths-in-science-edition-4?lang=en.

Job Application

We invite you to submit a complete application including:

• a cover letter in which you describe your motivation and qualifications for the position
• a curriculum vitae, including a list of your publications and a list with names of references
• a list of five self-selected ‘best papers’
• a statement of your teaching goals and experience
• a description of your scientific interest and plans.

Please send your application by clicking on "Apply" below the advertisement on the website of the university. The deadline for applications for this position is 28 February 11:59pm / before 1 March 2021 Dutch local time (CET).

The selection for interviews will be communicated before end of March 2021. The final selection will take place in a two-step procedure: (1) Candidates are invited for online interviews (including a seminar and a short presentation on research and teaching goals) to occur 21-23 April 2021 (2) based on the online interview the top candidate(s) are invited to visit the faculty in a custom-made programme taking the current traveling and safety restrictions into account. With loosening travel restrictions an on-site interview in Groningen may be scheduled in May/June 2021.

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), https://www.nvp-hrnetwerk.nl/sollicitatiecode/ and European Commission's European Code of Conduct for recruitment of researchers, https://euraxess.ec.europa.eu/jobs/charter/code

Unsolicited marketing is not appreciated.

Additional information

For additional information, please contact:

Prof. H. van der Wal, Scientific Director of the Zernike Institute

Prof. P. Rudolf, Prof. Experimental Solid-State Physics (for specific information on the position)

In your application, please always include the job opening ID 221009

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

Profile report in which the position is described in more detail Career Paths in Science More information on the Surfaces and Thin Films research group Key materials research at the Faculty of Science and Engineering

Digital application form