PhD Position in Civil Engineering

Catholic University of Leuven Department of Civil Engineering


The Faculty of Engineering Technology, located on Campus De Nayer (Sint-Katelijne-Waver), and the Department of Civil Engineering of the Science Engineering and Technology Group of KU Leuven, invite applications for a PhD position to strengthen the Materials & Structures research group. We are looking for a dynamic and motivated person (m/f) to perform research and prepare a PhD in the domain of Hybrid Structures, to support the activities of the research group ‘Materials and structures’ and teaching in the Bachelor and Master of Science in Engineering Technology - Civil Engineering.


General introduction
The position is located on Campus De Nayer in Sint-Katelijne-Waver, which is one of the operational sites of the Faculty of Engineering Technology. The faculty is a multi-campus faculty following the integration of the engineering technology educational programs of the KU Leuven. The faculty has its own teaching, research and doctoral profile. The appointee is respectively a member of the Department of Civil Engineering and the Faculty of Engineering Technology of KU Leuven because of his/her activities and teaching assignments. 
The PhD student conducts research regarding the shear behavior of hybrid structures made of reinforced concrete and encased steel members. The aim of this research is to contribute to a deeper understanding of involved mechanisms of shear carrying behavior in hybrid members and to develop refined mechanical models that allow a more rational design of steel and concrete hybrid structures. The candidate will be working under the guidance of Prof. M. Classen (assistant professor at the Civil Engineering Department), active in the field of hybrid structures. The research will be achieved in close collaboration with other entities of the Civil Engineering Department.
The researcher is expected to:
  • Do numerical and experimental scientific research using state-of-the-art tools and equipment
  • Be able to work independently, accurately and methodically
  • Present his/her results during regular internal and/or external meetings
  • Write scientific papers and present results during scientific conferences.

The successful candidate will support teaching activities in the Bachelor and Master of Science in Engineering Technology - Construction Engineering. The appointee shall also be willing to guide master theses. 


The position is open to applicants with a master degree in Engineering or Engineering Technology (preferably in civil engineering). 
Qualified candidates:
  • have proficient grades (at least distinction in the Master’s degree); 
  • have a strong interest in multidisciplinary research;
  • have interest in finite element modelling, numerical methods, full-scale testing, structural behavior of steel and concrete composite structures;
  • are motivated, open-minded, have the ability to work in a team, and eager for international mobility; 
  • very good knowledge of the English language, both spoken and written, is essential; knowledge of Dutch is an asset;
  • are flexible, and have good organizational skills.


We offer a fulltime employment for 2 years, extendable for another 2 years after a positive evaluation. You will work as a doctoral student in a stimulating and challenging work environment with a high degree of flexibility and autonomy.

At KU Leuven, the main teaching language is Dutch. 
The appointee must accept the necessary mobility required for fulfilling his/her teaching and research assignments.


For more information please contact Prof. dr. Martin Classen, tel.: +32 15 68 81 35, mail:

You can apply for this job no later than July 31, 2020 via the
KU Leuven seeks to foster an environment where all talents can flourish, regardless of gender, age, cultural background, nationality or impairments. If you have any questions relating to accessibility or support, please contact us at
  • Employment percentage: Voltijds
  • Location: Sint-Katelijne-Waver
  • Apply before: July 31, 2020
  • Tags: Industriële Ingenieurswetenschappen

In your application, please refer to