PhD New business models for a high-tech and data-driven sustainable food system

Food ChemistryHealth ScienceInnovation studiesNutrition StudiesSustainability Science
Sep 15, 2023 21:59:00 GMT+00:00
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Position – PhD-student

Irène Curie Fellowship – No

Department(s) – Industrial Engineering and Innovation Sciences

FTE – 1,0

Date off – 15/09/2023

Reference number – V39.6793

Job description

Do you have a background in innovation management, strategy management, sustainable entrepreneurship, business models and take an interest in the agrifood sector? Are you interested in helping to develop the high-tech and data-driven sustainable food system of the future? Then we are looking for you!

This position is part of the 4TU program entitled REDESIGN (REthinking the food system together; DESIGNing a high-tech and data-driven food system of the future) in which researchers from the 4 Technical Universities in the Netherlands will develop a sustainable food ecosystem in which health and nutritional data are connected via a database platform to food production in greenhouses. TU/e is leader on a work package focussing on the development of new sustainable business models to support the transition toward an interoperable data-driven food system. Please see for more information. The execution of this program demands close cooperation with the consortium’s partners, such as the 4TU researchers, industry partners and government stakeholders involved.

The PhD candidate will be based in the Innovation, Technology Entrepreneurship & Marketing (ITEM) group. The group is part of the School of Industrial Engineering of the department IE&IS. The ITEM group consists of about 25 FTE faculty members and 20 FTE PhD students who participate in and contribute to the research, education and service program of the ITEM group.  This program is one of the leading programs in the world and emphasizes means for measuring and improving the process of conceiving, developing, and launching new products and businesses, and also managing these products and businesses post-launch. More information about the ITEM group can be found at:


Eindhoven University of Technology is one of the world’s leading research universities (ranked by the Times Higher Education Supplement) and is particularly well known for its joint research with industry (ranked number one worldwide by the Centre for Science and Technology Studies). The Department of Industrial Engineering & Innovation Sciences (IE&IS) of Eindhoven University of Technology is one of the longest-established engineering schools in Europe, with a strong presence in the international research and education community, especially in the fields of Operations Management and Innovation Management, which are at the core of the undergraduate BSc program. The graduate programs (MSc and PhD) in Operations Management & Logistics and Innovation Management attract top-level students from all over the world.

Job requirements

  • You have a Master’s degree in Innovation Management, Innovation Sciences, Agribusiness Development, Food Quality Management, Food Technology Management, Nutrition and Health, Sustainability Science or a related disciplines.
  • You have a strong affinity with interdisciplinary research and working with academics as well as key stakeholders in the field, preferably in the agrifood sector.
  • You have affinity and experience with business model and system redesign or design science and/or participatory action research approaches is one of your competences.  
  • You have strong analytical skills and demonstrated competences for performing qualitative and design science research.
  • You like to take initiative and you are able to work on a challenging topic that has both basic and applied research aspects.
  • Your verbal and written communication skills are excellent, your proficiency in English is excellent (C1 level).
  • Anticipated starting date is January 1, 2024 at latest.

Conditions of employment

A meaningful job in a dynamic and ambitious university, in an interdisciplinary setting and within an international network. You will work on a beautiful, green campus within walking distance of the central train station. In addition, we offer you:

  • Full-time employment for four years, with an intermediate evaluation (go/no-go) after nine months. You will spend 10% of your employment on teaching tasks.
  • Salary and benefits (such as a pension scheme, paid pregnancy and maternity leave, partially paid parental leave) in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities, scale 27 (min. €2,541 max. €3,247).
  • A year-end bonus of 8.3% and annual vacation pay of 8%.
  • High-quality training programs and other support to grow into a self-aware, autonomous scientific researcher. At TU/e we challenge you to take charge of your own learning process.
  • An excellent technical infrastructure, on-campus children’s day care and sports facilities.
  • An allowance for commuting, working from home and internet costs.
  • A Staff Immigration Team and a tax compensation scheme (the 30% facility) for international candidates.

Information and application

About us

Eindhoven University of Technology is an internationally top-ranking university in the Netherlands that combines scientific curiosity with a hands-on attitude. Our spirit of collaboration translates into an open culture and a top-five position in collaborating with advanced industries. Fundamental knowledge enables us to design solutions for the highly complex problems of today and tomorrow. Curious to hear more about what it’s like as a PhD candidate at TU/e? Please view the video.


Do you recognize yourself in one of these profiles and would you like to know more? Please contact dr. Maral Mahdad (m.mahdad[at] or dr. Boukje Huijben (j.c.c.m.huijben[at]

Visit our website for more information about the application process or the conditions of employment. You can also contact HR Services (HRServices.IEIS[at]

Are you inspired and would like to know more about working at TU/e? Please visit our career page.


We invite you to submit a complete application by using the apply button. The application should include a:

  • Cover letter (2 page max), which includes a motivation of your interest in the vacancy and an explanation of why you would fit well with the project.
  • Detailed curriculum vitae.
  • List of courses you have taken in Masters and Bachelor programs (including grades).
  • Results of a recent English language test, or other evidence of your English language capabilities (TOEFL, IELTS, etc.).
  • Name and contact information of two references.

If you are interested, we invite you to apply before September 15, 2023. You can send us your application through the online job portal of the TU/e. We do not accept applications sent by e-mail. You can only upload a maximum of 5 documents of 2 Mb each. If you have more than 5 documents, you will need to combine them.

We look forward to your application and will screen it as soon as we have received it. Review of applications will begin immediately upon receipt, and continue until the positions are filled, with the last date for applications being September 15, 2023. Job interviews will be scheduled in October.

Industrial Engineering and Innovation Sciences

TU/e is a leading international university of technology specializing in Engineering Science & Technology. Through excellent teaching and research we contribute to progress in the technical sciences, to the development of technological innovations, and as a result to the growth of prosperity and welfare in the region and beyond.

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