Professor In High Throughput Processes For Polymers And Structured Materials

KU Leuven



At the Science and Technology Group, Faculty of Engineering Technology, Department of Chemical Engineering, Technology Cluster Sustainable Chemical Process Technology, Campus Diepenbeek of KU Leuven there is a full-time vacancy in the academic staff (professor) in the field of the development of high throughput processes polymers and structured materials. We are looking for internationally oriented candidates with an excellent research file, a strong affinity with industrial applications and with research competence in complex pharmaceutical products, organic components, polymer blends, plastics, coatings and paints. The focus is on new technologies and automated platforms for characterization, The proposed position strengthens ongoing research in the Lab4U and Plastics Groups, both active on the Diepenbeek campus and belonging to the Sustainable Chemical Process Technology technology cluster, Department of Chemical Engineering, KU Leuven. This gives you access to a solid research infrastructure, an extensive international research network, connections with industry and the non-profit sector, talented doctoral researchers and a stimulating working environment, all embedded in the multidisciplinary network to the other departments and research groups involved.


The proposed research meets an industrial need for systems that quickly and efficiently understand the effects of a changed product formulation on processing behavior and final product properties. This knowledge allows companies to respond more quickly to requests for products with extra functionalities tailored to the customer, to requirements of new technologies such as robot rotation molding or 3D printing, and finally to stricter environmental and health requirements (REACH).

The development of intensified high throughput systems for complex formulations should allow rapid identification and prediction of the effect of changed product composition and / or changing process parameters on the final product properties. For this, the candidate has a broad knowledge in the field, including the fields of reactors, flow technology, materials science, plastics, physical chemistry and rheology. 


  • You develop and coordinate an international-level research program on the development and validation of high throughput platforms for the optimization and prediction of product properties with changing formulations. Possible lines of research include the integration of continuous rheological and material characterization techniques or the development of inline analysis techniques and predictive tools through integration and development of sensors in reactor platforms. Other lines towards the processing of plastics or complex polymer and organic mixtures with a focus on predicting, monitoring and checking final material properties are also being considered.
  • You strengthen the existing lines of research and add additional expertise through close cooperation with the existing members of the research groups at Campus Diepenbeek, the Department of Chemical Engineering and the technology clusters. You also set up partnerships outside of these entities.
  • You strive for excellence in your research, resulting in doctorates and publications according to international standards and in this way contribute to the further development and international image of the research groups involved, the campus and the department.
  • You support or initiate a network of companies through valorization of research results and the implementation of industrial services, with the aim of strengthening industrial innovation.
  • You work out an international partnership around your research program, both within academia and with regional and international industry.
  • You obtain competitive financing through projects set up with government resources and through collaboration with industry.

The training programs of the faculty of industrial engineering are aimed at educating engineers with a strong focus on industry-oriented technological development. The teaching assignment is situated in the bachelor's and master's in industrial sciences, mainly on the Diepenbeek campus. You also undertake to guarantee the quality of the training as a whole. Other technology campuses can use your expertise to provide education if requested.

The assignment comprises courses in the field of chemical engineering, physicochemistry, materials science and plastics. You also supervise student projects (bachelor's thesis, master's thesis, student projects) and you contribute to the pedagogical project of the faculty and the university by supervising doctoral students. 

You develop your education in accordance with the vision of KU Leuven on activating and research-based education and with a clear commitment to the quality of the study program as a whole. You make use of the opportunities for educational professionalization offered by the faculty and the university.

Your teaching assignment is limited in scope in the first years of your appointment and is determined in mutual consultation and based on your profile. All professors are expected to also teach a number of basic subjects. In your further career too, the faculty pays a lot of attention to the balance between research and teaching time.


You are prepared to provide scientific, social and internal services. 

You are particularly prepared to provide services to the government and industry in the context of applied research. That is why you maintain close contact with the (local) professional field and you stay informed of both the scientific state of affairs and industrial practice. 

You play an active role in profiling the Faculty of Engineering Technology to future students and the broad field of work, for example by participating in information days and events



You preferably have a doctorate in Industrial Sciences or Engineering sciences option chemistry or materials science or in a related domain that matches the requested research assignment and educational duties. You can prove that you have experience in the requested domain through successful industrial research projects or academic research in close collaboration with industry. Industrial experience is a plus for this position. 

You have a strong research file in the field and / or relevant industrial experience that follows from your publications or research results in the industry. You are focused on social and / or industrial valorization of the research. International experience is a plus.

You have a vision of providing quality academic education in your field. Education experience is a plus. 

You have organizational and managerial capacities in a university or industrial context and you have a collegial attitude. 

A good knowledge of English (C1) is required. The administrative and educational language at KU Leuven is Dutch. If you know little or no Dutch at recruitment, KU Leuven provides a training offer that must allow you to participate in board meetings. 
Before you teach a teaching assignment in Dutch, you are offered the opportunity to acquire the required knowledge of Dutch.



We offer full-time employment in an intellectually challenging environment and with a high degree of freedom. KU Leuven is a research and internationally oriented university that focuses on both fundamental and applied research. The university focuses on interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary research and strives for international excellence. That is why you actively collaborate with research partners in Belgium and abroad. This also results in academic education based on high-quality scientific research. 

For your research and teaching assignments you mainly work on the campus in Diepenbeek (Hasselt), a green and dynamic environment in the east of Belgium, about 1 hour from Eindhoven, Aachen and Brussels, the capital of the European Union, and about three hours from Paris, London and Amsterdam.

Depending on your file and qualifications, you will be appointed or appointed to one of the degrees of the independent academic staff: teacher, senior lecturer, professor or full professor. Junior researchers are in principle appointed as tenure track teachers for a period of 5 years; afterwards, with a positive evaluation, they are permanently appointed as senior lecturers.


KU Leuven is well equipped to welcome foreign professors and their families and offers practical support in the areas of immigration and administration, housing, childcare, learning Dutch, career coaching partner, ... To facilitate scientific integration and research in the first phase a start-up financing of 100,000 euros is offered to new professors who have no substantial other financing and who are recruited for at least 50%.



For more information about the content of the function you can contact:

  • Prof. Dr. Ir. Paula Moldenaers, department head Department of Chemical Engineering (, tel. +32 16 32 23 59) or
  • Prof. Dr. Ir. Johan Baeten, head of department at KU Leuven Campus Diepenbeek (, tel. +32 11 18 03 11)

You can apply for XXXX only through our online application application. If you encounter problems when applying online, you can send an email to

Add the following sections to your application in the English language (more info can be found on the KU Leuven job site):

  • a biosketch in which you demonstrate your added value as an academic for the core tasks of research, education and services in your past career and for your future activities (maximum 2 pages);
  • a file about your five most important publications or realizations;
  • an extensive CV (including a complete publication list and, if applicable, a portfolio of your important projects);
  • a research plan with a focus on the development of a research line and associated research team with an eye for collaboration with fellow researchers within the employment entity (maximum 4 pages);
  • your vision of academic education and its organization (maximum 2 pages);
  • your contribution to service activities (internal representation through membership in councils and administrative bodies, contributions to society from education and research, outreach and science communication) (maximum 1 page);
  • your vision of leadership (maximum 1 page).

The KU Leuven pursues an equal opportunities and diversity policy. It explicitly encourages candidates from groups that are currently underrepresented in the university to apply.

You can apply for this vacancy up to and including 19/08/2019 via our online application application
KU Leuven wants to create an environment in which all talents can develop to the maximum, regardless of gender, age, cultural origin, nationality or disability. If you have any questions regarding accessibility or support options, you can contact us via

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