Quick facts

    • Wageningen
  • Full time
  • Recruitment


  • Environmental science


  • Phd

Apply by: 2022-12-09

PhD Instruments to enhance the transition to sustainable Dutch rural landscapes

Published 2022-04-14

Driven by pressing national challenges (i.e. nitrogen, biodiversity, climate adaptation and water quality), Dutch agriculture has to change drastically in the coming years. Specific targets, however, will vary from one area to the other, depending on soil, water, environmental and social factors. You will investigate how the area-specific targets can be met by means of a coherent set of legal and policy instruments. How effective, efficient, legitimate and fair are the various existing instruments? What are the trade-offs between e.g. fairness and effectiveness and how should we go about with such trade-offs? How can instruments be combined so that they offset each other's downsides and strengthen their efficiency? Is there a need for new instruments in addition to those that are already in use?

In this PhD position, you will look for answers to these questions. In doing so, you will be collaborating with two other PhD students, one working on the environmental dimension, the other one working on the social dimension (from the farmers' perspective). Prevailing methods are document analyses and interviews, but you will also prepare input for an agent-based model (which requires the ability to reduce complex instruments to simple, quantitative variables to which artificial, stylized land owners/users can respond). Additionally, the analysis of all these instruments will ultimately result in a set of policy guidelines for practice.

The project is attached to the Landscape Architecture and Spatial Planning (LSP) group at Wageningen University. Do you want to know more about our work at the Landscape Architecture and Spatial Planning (LSP) group? Check out our page with news, recent publications and projects.

  • A university degree (MSc) in a relevant field (e.g. Spatial Planning, Environmental
  • Law, Public Administration) with a broad and interdisciplinary interest;
  • Affinity with Dutch agriculture and rural landscapes;
  • Preferably experience with societal stakeholders;
  • For this position your command of the English language is expected to be at C1 level.
  • Very good Dutch communicative and writing skills (field work is conducted in Dutch). For more information about this proficiency level, please visit our special language page.
  • Compliance with all the entry requirements of the WUR PhD programme.
Wageningen University & Research offers excellent terms of employment. A few highlights from our Collective Labour Agreement include:
  • study leave and partially paid parental leave;
  • working hours that can be discussed and arranged so that they allow for the best possible work-life balance;
  • the option to accrue additional compensation / holiday hours by working more, up to 40 hours per week;
  • there is a strong focus on vitality and you can make use of the sports facilities available on campus for a small fee;
  • a fixed December bonus of 8.3%;
  • excellent pension scheme.
In addition to these first-rate employee benefits, you will receive a fully funded PhD position and you will be offered a course program tailored to your needs and the research team.
The gross salary for the first year is € 2.443,- per month rising to € 3.122,- in the fourth year in according to the Collective Labour Agreements for Dutch Universities (CAO-NU) (scale P). This is based on a full-time working week of 38 hours. We offer a temporary contract for 18 months which will be extended for the duration of the project if you perform well.

There are plenty of options for personal initiative in a learning environment, and we provide excellent training opportunities. We are offering a unique position in an international environment with a pleasant and open working atmosphere.

You are going to work at the greenest and most innovative campus in Holland, and at a university that has been chosen as the " Best University " in the Netherlands for the 17th consecutive time.

Coming from abroad
Wageningen University & Research is the university and research centre for life sciences. The themes we deal with are relevant to everyone around the world and Wageningen, therefore, has a large international community and a lot to offer to international employees. Applicants from abroad moving to the Netherlands may qualify for a special tax relief, known as the 30% ruling. Our team of advisors on Dutch immigration procedures will help you with the visa application procedures for yourself and, if applicable, for your family.
Feeling welcome also has everything to do with being well informed. Wageningen University & Research's International Community page contains practical information about what we can do to support international employees and students coming to Wageningen. Furthermore, we can assist you with any additional advice and information about helping your partner to find a job, housing, schooling, and other issues.

Wageningen University & ResearchWageningen University & Research

The mission of Wageningen University and Research is "To explore the potential of nature to improve the quality of life". Under the banner Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen University and the specialised research institutes of the Wageningen Research Foundation have joined forces in contributing to finding solutions to important questions in the domain of healthy food and living environment.

With its roughly 30 branches, 6.800 employees and 12.900 students, Wageningen University & Research is one of the leading organisations in its domain. An integrated approach to problems and the cooperation between various disciplines are at the heart of Wageningen's unique approach. WUR has been named Best Employer in the Education category for 2019-2020.

Read the 5 reasons why your future colleagues enjoy working at WUR and watch this video to get an idea of our green campus!

We will recruit for the vacancy ourselves, so no employment agencies please. However, sharing in your network is appreciated.

For more information about this function you can contact Diego Valbuena, Land Use Planning Group, by e-mail: diego.valbuena@wur.nl

General information about our Group can be found here.

For more information about the procedure you can contact Edgar Tijhuis, corporate recruiter, e-mail: edgar.tijhuis@wur.nl

Do you want to apply?
This can be done directly via the application button at the vacancy on our website so that we can process your personal data with your permission.

Equal opportunities
Wageningen University & Research (WUR) employs a large number of people with very different backgrounds and qualities, who inspire and motivate each other. We want every talent to feel at home in our organisation and be offered the same career opportunities. We therefore especially welcome applications from people who are underrepresented at WUR. For more information please go to our inclusivity page. A good example of how WUR deals with inclusiveness can be read on the page working at WUR with a functional impairment.