PhD Student

Last application date
Dec 15, 2022 00:00
LA24 - Department of Green Chemistry and Technology
Limited duration
Master in Bioscience Engineering or Master of Science : Chemistry
Occupancy rate
Vacancy type
Research staff

Job description

We welcome applications for a full-time PhD position (ESR, 4 years) within the Synthesis, Bioresources and Bioorganic Chemistry Research Group (SynBioC) of the Department of Green Chemistry and Technology, Faculty of Bioscience Engineering, UGent. The PhD student will be appointed in an ITN EU project "GreenDigiPharma” (Marie Curie Training Network) (greener synthesis of pharmaceuticals via flow technology) in Belgium for a doctoral degree on this project.

A short summary of the GreenDigiPharma project:
GreenDigiPharma is an EU Doctoral Network MARIE SKŁODOWSKA-CURIE ACTION project. The pharmaceutical industry is a major driver for economic growth and provides health products and technologies to the benefit of all. As the pharmaceutical demand increases steadily in the EU, growing concerns about the environmental impact of pharmaceutical processes are putting pressure on this industry. The pharmaceutical industry is, in fact, responsible for generating the highest share of pollution in the chemical sector. This highlights the strong need for sustainable development within the pharmaceutical industry. This can be achieved through the adoption of greener approaches, and the repurposing of existing drug is certainly in line with this philosophy. As a result, it is imperative at present to develop pharmaceutical processes that minimize the use of hazardous chemicals, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and fostering the reuse and recycling of materials in a circular manner, reaching a safe and sustainable pre-market design of pharmaceuticals. Another priority concerns the efficient and fast supply of lifesaving drugs, without considering long lead time and manufacturing bottlenecks. This project will primarily aim to address these critical skills’ gaps, and deliver a cohort of highly-skilled and trained PhD graduates, who will lead the green and digital transformation of the pharmaceutical manufacturing both in academia and in industrial environments. On a scientific level, the project will develop greener routes to prepare pharmaceutical products, promoting the adoption of novel technologies for sustainable manufacturing (continuous-flow synthesis to replace batch methods, heterogeneous nano and biocatalysis in lieu of homogeneous catalysts, use of renewable carbon sources, novel purification methods, original digitalization tools).
Your tasks will mainly be connected to WP3 for
- the optimization of a bromination-metal catalyzed coupling reaction in flow in a sustainable solvent and
- telescoping a three-step synthesis in cyrene as a renewable solvent will be your objectives.
You will also be involved in WP7 which focuses on dissemination and exploitation of the project.

Job profile

Candidates are expected to have a Master in Chemistry or Master in Bioscience engineering and/or affinity with organic chemistry and synthesis. For this project (4 years) we are looking for someone who is critical, analytical and has a sense of initiative.
Other profile requirements:

  • The project requires an EU student and the project would start on January 1st 2023.
  • You hold a Master's degree in Bioscience Engineering, Science Chemistry or equivalent. The degree requirements must be met at the start of the appointment.
  • You are interested in scientific research in order to obtain a doctoral degree.
  • You have good writing and presentation skills.
  • You have a very good oral and written knowledge of academic English.
  • Candidate cannot be a Belgian resident or has stayed for some time in Belgium. You must not have resided or carried out your main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the country of the recruiting (Belgium) beneficiary for more than 12 months in the 36 months immediately before the recruitment data. Researchers of any nationality are eligible. However, a clear transnational mobility must be demonstrated at the time of the recruitment at the host institution. Not the nationality but the location of residence of the researcher in the last three years prior to his/her is important.

How to apply

Please send an email, no later than December 15th 2022, to:
- Prof. Dr. ir. Christian Stevens
The subject of the email should contain the following title: 'Application PhD GreenDigiPharma + family name’.
The following documents must be attached: letter of motivation, CV, a copy of the highest degree and a summary of the results of the studies.
Selection procedure:
- Preselection based on the provided documents
- Selection based on interviews
Planned starting date doctoral position: January 1st, 2023.
You will be recruited on the basis of competencies. Qualities of people are decisive, regardless of gender, religion, ethnic origin, age, sexual orientation or any disability.
For more information about the content of this position and the GreenDigiPharma project, please contact