PhD. position| on “Drivers of Sustainability” (deadline 9 January 2019)

Fully-funded 4-year Ph.D. position on “Drivers of `Sustainability¿ (DOS), in Dutch-African horticulture supply chains, 1960-2020”

Job description

The PhD position is a collaboration of the Technology, Innovation and Society group and the Operations, Planning, Accounting and Control group at the of the Department of Industrial Engineering and Innovation Sciences, Eindhoven University of Technology. It is part of a larger research effort to better understand how sustainability issues in the Netherlands and the Global South have become interrelated through the development of transcontinental supply chains. We invite applications for a 4-year fully funded PhDposition starting at the latest in April 2019.

Research content 

Neither sustainability issues in the Netherlands, nor sustainability issues in the Global South, should be studied in geographical isolation. Through the development of transcontinental supply chains, (un)sustainable developments in the Netherlands and the Global South have become entangled. The fruit, flowers, and plants trade is a case in point. After the 1970s, the Netherlands has gradually emerged as a dominant hub in the international trade of these commodities with links to North and East Africa in particular. At present, business as well as governments strive to make this trade more transparent and sustainable. However, information on historically grown sustainability relations and issues is sorely missing.

The Ph.D. project aims at analyzing these entangled long-term dynamics of the international horticulture supply chain, through the lens of sustainability and well-being developments. To this purpose it combines global history of infrastructure and supply chains; sustainability studies; business logistics and business modelling—which have been key to the development of transnational horticultural networks; and research on the roles of, and implications for, multiple stakeholders in different locations along the supply chain.

Institutional context

The Technology, Innovation and Society group researches interactions between technological, economic, social, and environmental change, with particular attention for environmental innovation and sustainability transitions. It boasts strong history-of-technology, sustainability transitions, and economics of innovation research groups, and coordinates a B.Sc. program Sustainable Innovation and a M.Sc. program Innovation Sciences. It also offers university-wide courses on the historical, social and economic dynamics of technology.

The Operations, Planning, Accounting and Control group teaches and conducts research in the area of operations planning and control in manufacturing, services, logistics and supply chains. Research is generally quantitative in nature, while many of the researchers also engage in empirical research. The OPAC group is responsible within the university for all teaching in the areas of operations management, transportation, manufacturing operations, reliability and maintenance, and accounting and finance, both at undergraduate and graduate level.  

Job requirements

Your Profile

The candidate holds a Master’s degree or equivalent degree in one of the following fields: History (of Technology / Sciences / Economy / Business), Sciences and Technology Studies, Innovation Studies, or related fields. The candidate has excellent writing, qualitative and quantitative analytic skills, fluency in English (which is the working language of the involved research groups), and a strong interest in conducting research in an interdisciplinary and international team. Knowledge of Dutch is seen as an added value. The candidate should be able to take up the position latest by May 1st 2019.

The TU/e is an equal opportunity employee. Members of underrepresented groups are strongly encouraged to apply.

Conditions of employment

Our Offer

We offer a four-year PhD position in a vibrating research environment which is shaped by an interdisciplinary and international team of researchers and their tight integration in (inter)national research networks. The position comes with a gross salary of € 2.266 per month in the first year, increasing to €2.897 per month in the fourth year. Additionally, Eindhoven University of Technology provides excellent facilities for professional and personal development, a holiday allowance (amounts to 8% of the annual salary), an end-of-year bonus (amounts to 8,3%), and a number of additional benefits. The candidate will be given the possibility to gain teaching experience as well as to receive graduate training.

Information and application


The application should contain the following documents:

–          a letter of motivation which explains your interest in the position and your qualifications for it;

–          a curriculum vitae (including, if applicable, a publication list and a teaching overview)

–          a research statement (roughly 500 words, plus (short!) bibliography) in which you elaborate on your ideas for a research focus in line with the project

–          names and contact information of three persons willing to provide references.

If you are interested in this position, we invite you to apply before January 10, 2019 bij using the apply now button. Please note that a maximum of 5 documents can be uploaded, so if you have more than 5 documents you will have to combine them. Please do not send us applications by e-mail. Shortlisted candidates will be interviewed in Eindhoven (travel expenses will be covered) or via a video call end of January 2019, decision about the appointment will be made shortly after the interviews.

Further information

For further information on the research context of this PhD position please contact: Frank Veraart ( or Virginie Lurkin (

Information about the terms of employment can be obtained from Mrs. Kim van Puijenbroek, HR advisor (

More information on the research network Global resources and sustainability of European modernization (GREASE) can be found at

More information about the Department of Industrial Engineering and Innovation Sciences can be found at

For more information, see this page.

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