Funded PhD Position in Plant Biotechnology at Wageningen University in The Netherlands

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Are you looking for an exciting PhD project to tackle fundamental questions in plant science? Are you interested in exploring how plants perceive and respond to their environment? Do you have affinity with plant physiology and molecular biology? And do you want to do research in a multicultural and stimulating academic environment? A funded PhD position in Plant Biotechnology is currently open for application at Wageningen University in The Netherlands.


We are looking for a motivated PhD candidate to work on PhD project: Green light signalling in plant. NWO-funded project to study the mechanisms underlying green light sensing in plants. The selected candidate will work in close collaboration with a postdoctoral researcher on this project. They will become a member of the Retrograde Signalling team, which is embedded in the chair group of Plant Physiology.


Project Description

Plants dynamically respond to their light environment, to optimize light capture for photosynthesis. The means by which blue, red and far-red light are perceived by different plant photoreceptor proteins are well-understood.

However, it remains unknown how plants sense green light. In this project, we aim to find out how plants perceive and respond to green light, and how this helps them to survive (shaded) environments where light quality fluctuates. The work will be performed in model species Arabidopsis thaliana and follows a multidisciplinary approach using physiological, molecular, and modelling techniques.

The research is embedded within the chair Plant Physiology, and part of the Retrograde Signalling team, which is led by Dr. Charlotte Gommers. The selected candidate will be co-supervised by Prof. Christa Testerink


Eligibility Requirements

Prospective and qualified candidates should have:

  • A successfully completed MSc degree in Plant Sciences, Molecular Biology, (Plant) Biotechnology or equivalent study.
  • Excellent English language proficiency. For this position your command of the English language is expected to be at C1 level or higher.
  • Hands-on experience in molecular biology. Experience in microscopy is a plus.
  • A proven affinity with plant physiology.
  • The ability to work efficiently and accurately and be highly motivated to do fundamental research.
  • The willingness to contribute to teaching and mentoring of MSc and BSc students.
  •  Strong communication skills and work well in a small team.
  • The ability to contribute to an open and inclusive atmosphere.

What We Offer

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.



For more information about this position, please contact Charlotte Gommers, Assistant Professor and project leader: [email protected].

For more information about the procedure, please contact Ine van ‘t Land, corporate recruiter, [email protected]


How To Apply

Interested and qualified candidates can apply directly by uploading your CV (max. 4 pages A4) and motivation letter (max. 1 page A4), including the names of 2 references, using the apply link which will allow us to process your personal information with your approval. We only consider applications via this website for the position. Any applications by e-mail will not be considered.

This vacancy will be listed up to and including 29 May 2022. We hope to schedule the first job interviews in week 23. The preferred starting date for this position is summer 2022.


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