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PhD student - Belgium  

Ghent University (company)

Posted on : 29 June 2017

Project Description

Agronomic and Environmental Performance of Organo-mineral Fertilisers from Recovered Nutrients (This position is part of a larger contingent of new recruitments of 6 new staff members committed to research in research topics of projects in the BioRefine Cluster Europe) Ghent University (Belgium) is internationally one of the leading institutes in resource recovery and renewable resources. It is home to the BioRefine Cluster Europe (, a network of international research and development projects with dedicated focus of guiding innovation towards applied market implementation. As part of an extensive European programme on Nutrient Recovery demonstrators (H2020-SYSTEMIC), we are recruiting a junior expert for a PhD degree at Ghent University (Belgium). Research content This research focuses on mineral nutrient recovery from manure, biowaste and sludges used in biogas installations (renewable energy from waste). The research topic is part of the broader concept of biorefinery in which biobased resources are used for recovery of chemicals in addition to energy. It is conducted in collaboration with biobased industry and chemical fertiliser industry. As part of the research, fertilisers produced using different nutrient recovery processes will be examined both under laboratory and field (crop) conditions with particular attention for (i) crop yield in comparison with synthetic fertilisers based on fossil resources (agronomic performance), (ii) overall quality of investigated the products with attention for nutritional balances and presence/absence of undesired elements or biological actors (pathogens), (iii) organic carbon / nutrient balances and losses in full field application.

We offer

  • Full-time employment for a period of 4y
  • Being embedded in a team of young dynamic experts from academia and industry
  • Involvement in a European project (H2020-SYSTEMIC) with research partners in Italy, Germany, Finland, the Netherlands, United Kingdom and Belgium with possibility of mobility across partner countries to visit innovative nutrient recovery processes at practical industrial scale
  • An innovative and hot-topic research scope with clear practical applications
  • Close supervision and guidance in the conducting the planned research
  • The possibility to develop a broad network
  • Stimulation to self-improvement by encouraging participation in courses, workshops and conferences
  • A PhD degree related to this research

Profile of the candidate

  • You are interested in and motivated by the research topic, as well as in obtaining a PhD degree
  • You have mastered the English language, both in writing skills and oral presentations
  • You have the required communicative skills to interact independently with scientific community, business community and farming community
  • You have a relevant degree – Master level in applied biological sciences (agriculture, environmental technology,…) or are expecting to obtain such a MSc degree in the currently running academic year.

How to apply

Send CV and motivation letter to: and before July 9, 17h (Central European Time) (put „SYSTEMIC performance“ in the email title). Candidates will be invited for an interview in the first two weeks of July.