Postdoc position on Micropollutant Biodegradation

The Wageningen University & Research (WUR) seeks an enthusiastic scientist who is willing to develop biodegradation-based technologies to remove trace concentrations of organic micropollutants in oligotrophic drinking water production systems.

The “Safeguarding drinking water resources” project focuses on attaining a fundamental understanding of microbial activity in groundwater systems, using this understanding to engineer niches of microbial activity for the biodegradation of organic micropollutants. The research focuses particularly on the role of natural dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in steering microbial activity and micropollutant biodegradation. The research employs methods from different disciplines, including environmental biotechnology, microbial ecology, numerical modeling, and organic chemistry, to do experiments on the microcosm, reactor, and field scale. Nevertheless, the research is executed by one full-time PhD, one full-time postdoc, and one part-time postdoc in close collaboration with stakeholders from the drinking water sector.


As a PostDoc candidate will focus your research on the following:

  • assess the influence of DOC on microbial activity and micropollutant biodegradation; 
  • characterize changes in DOC composition due to microbial degradation and link these to micropollutant biodegradation;
  • explore the affects of DOC addition on microbial community composition using 16S rRNA gene and metagenomic sequencing;
  • actively participate in teaching BSc and MSc students.

Primary Location: Wageningen

Duration: 2 years


  • A competitive gross salary of between € 2790, and € 4012, per month;
  • a fixed December bonus of 8.3%;
  • excellent pension scheme;
  • For international applicants, they offer the Coming to Delft Service and Partner Career Advice to assist with relocation.

Job Requirements

The successful candidate is expected to have:

  • PhD degree in environmental engineering, environmental technology, water biotechnology, environmental sciences, or a related field;
  • background in biological water technologies, especially anaerobic, oligotrophic and drinking water systems;
  • knowledge of microbial biodegradation processes, preferably of trace organic micropollutants;
  • proven laboratory skills e.g. in molecular biology, analytical chemistry, contaminant biodegradation, and can think in and work with multidisciplinary research approaches;
  • proven scientific impact, as exemplified in important publications and presentations at international conferences;
  • affinity with working as a team player, proactive in your work, involved actively in your working environment and capable of independently addressing and solving research problems;
  • experience with academic teaching and supervision of research by, for example, MSc or BSc students;
  • excellent English language proficiency (a minimum of CEFR C2 level). Preferably with proven test-results available. For more information about this proficiency level, please visit our special
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Application Process

Interested applicants are to fill in the application form and attach the following documents:

  • Full curriculum vitae
  • Motivation letter specifically addressing the position
  • Two recommendation letters (or alternatively the names and email addresses of two references).

To apply, click here.

Application Deadline: March 01, 2022.

For more information, visit the official site.

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