Tenure Track Assistant Professorship in Natural Product Discovery and Engineering


The University of Groningen is a research university with a global outlook. The Faculty of Science and Engineering (FSE) is the largest faculty within the University. We offer high-standard education and conduct impactful research in a wide range of subject areas, from classical ones such as mathematics, astronomy, physics, chemistry and biology, to interdisciplinary fields such as artificial intelligence, computer science, pharmacy, mechanical engineering, and materials science. Our staff members interact with students and staff from around the world.

City of Groningen: http://www.rug.nl/(...)/discover-groningen/

The position we offer will be embedded in the Groningen Biomolecular Sciences and Biotechnology Institute (GBB). GBB provides an excellent environment for ground-breaking research and comprises thirteen creative research units in biochemistry, biophysical chemistry, molecular and cell biology, computational and systems biology, genetics, and microbiology. Research in GBB is organized in two focal areas: ‘Molecular Mechanisms of Biological Processes’ and ‘Physiology and Systems Biology’.

We are looking for a tenure track Assistant to Associate Professor with outstanding knowledge of and experience in microbial biotechnology and who aims to develop and implement novel approaches to discover, screen and engineer unexplored natural compounds, which have great potential for specific applications. For instance, combinatorial methods can be used to (re)design natural products to also aid natural product diversification and effectiveness and eventually improved production. The newly appointed staff member will be able to connect to ongoing studies in molecular microbiology (Profs. Arnold Driessen, Dirk-Jan Scheffers, and Tessa Quax), microbiomes (Prof. Sahar El Aidy, Dr Frans Bianchi), molecular systems biology (Profs. Matthias Heineman, Andreas Milias), molecular enzymology and biotechnology (Prof. Marco Fraaije and Dr Max F├╝rst), chemical biology (Profs. Giovanni Maglia), and synthetic biology (Dr Sonja Billerbeck). Furthermore, the work connects to structural-function research (Profs. Siewert-Jan Marrink, Albert Guskov, Dirk Slotboom, Bert Poolman and Dr. Tych) as well as research activities at the Stratingh Institute for Chemistry (e.g. Prof. Adri Minnaard), the Groningen Research Institute for Pharmacy (GRIP; e.g. Prof. Gerrit Poelarends, Dr Sandy Schmidt), the Groningen Ecology and Evolutionary Life Sciences Institute (Prof. Joana Falcao Salles, Dr Marjon de Vos), and the Engineering and Technology institute Groningen (ENTEG; Prof. Gert-Jan Euverink).

Next to the strong emphasis on research the candidate will teach in courses of the BSc curricula in Biology, Chemistry and Life Science and Technology as well as the MSc curricula of Biomolecular Sciences and Chemistry. The candidate will use creative modern teaching concepts.

The successful candidate will establish an active research group largely supported by extramural funds, be an interactive member of the institute GBB and the faculty, participate in interdisciplinary research and training, and engage in graduate and undergraduate teaching.

Curricula of the relevant teaching programmmes:

BSc Biology (major Molecular Life Sciences): https://www.rug.nl/(...)owpos?opleiding=6531
BSc Life Science and Technology: https://www.rug.nl/(...)owpos?opleiding=6277
BSc Chemistry: https://www.rug.nl/(...)owpos?opleiding=4958
MSc Chemistry (track Chemical Biology): https://www.rug.nl/(...)owpos?opleiding=6394
MSc Biomolecular Sciences: https://www.rug.nl/(...)owpos?opleiding=4554


We encourage you to apply if you have:

• a PhD degree in a relevant subject area
• at least two years of postdoctoral experience outside of the Netherlands, (can be compensated for after the appointment via extended research visits abroad)
• a relevant international and/or industrial network
• excellent research qualities that demonstrate originality in addressing important fundamental questions in the domain microbial biotechnology published in influential peer-reviewed journals
• a track record in university teaching appropriate to the career stage
• successfully (co-)supervised PhD students appropriate to the career stage
• received meaningful research grants from external sources appropriate to the career stage
• organizational competences
• the ability to work well in an international, culturally diverse, environment
• excellent command of spoken and written English.

And you are:

• a visible professional in the field of microbial biotechnology, microbial cell engineering, synthetic biology appropriate to the career stage
• an inspiring leader who stimulates group members to get the best out of themselves
• a team player with good communication skills
• willing to acquire 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

Depending on your career stage, we offer you a full-time tenure track position as Assistant Professor or a full-time position as Associate Professor with:

• a salary, depending on qualifications and work experience, from € 3,974 (salary scale 11) up to a maximum of € 6,181 gross per month (salary scale 12 Collective Labour Agreement Dutch Universities), depending on your career stage) for a tenure track Assistant Professor position
• a holiday allowance and end-of-year bonus of respectively 8% and 8.3% of your yearly gross salary
• a start-up package (to be negotiated with the GBB director and dean)
• a pension scheme
• maternity and parental leave
• the possibility to work part-time (0,9 0,8 FTE)
• a personal development trajectory and a mentor programme
• dual career support for partners of new faculty members moving to Groningen.

Please consider our new Career Paths in Science for a complete description of criteria for tenure and promotion, which most likely applies by the time the candidate for this position is appointed. The penultimate version can be found here: http://www.rug.nl/(...)ienceandengineering/


We invite you to contact Dr Valia Sakkoula via valia.sakkoula@perrettlaver.com for discussing your interest in applying prior to sending:

• a cover letter in which you describe your motivation and qualifications for the position
• a curriculum vitae, including an overview of successfully supervised PhD students, a list of five self-selected ‘best papers’ with a brief motivation of their importance, a full list of publications, and a list with names of references
• a concise description of your research plans; a route towards application is optional (max. 3 pp.)
• a statement of your teaching goals and experience (max. 1 pp).

An information package/brochure is also available by contacting Perret Laver, Dr Valia Sakkoula.

Applications should be submitted prior to 9am CET on Monday 22nd May, 2023. The selection interviews will take place between end of May and middle of June 2023.

The University of Groningen strives to be a university in which students and staff are respected and feel at home, regardless of differences in background, experiences, perspectives, and identities. We believe that working on our core values of inclusion and equality are a joint responsibility and we are constructively working on creating a socially safe environment. Diversity among students and staff members enriches academic debate and contributes to the quality of our teaching and research. We therefore invite applicants from underrepresented groups in particular to apply. For more information, see also our diversity policy webpage: https://www.rug.nl/(...)rsity-and-inclusion/

Our selection procedure follows the guidelines of the Recruitment code (NVP): https://www.nvp-hrnetwerk.nl/nl/sollicitatiecode and European Commission's European Code of Conduct for recruitment of researchers: https://euraxess.ec.europa.eu/jobs/charter/code

We provide career services for partners of new faculty members moving to Groningen.

Unsolicited marketing is not appreciated.


For information you can contact:

  • Prof. Dirk Slotboom, Scientific Director GBB and executive Chair for this position, +31 50 3634187, d.j.slotboom@rug.nl

Please do not use the e-mail address(es) above for applications.

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