Senior researcher in sustainability measurements with a strong affinity with the agricultural sector

Information about the organisation

LEI Wageningen UR is one of the world's leading socio-economic research institutes. LEI's unique data, models and knowledge provide support to clients in forming policy and making decisions, and ultimately contribute to a more sustainable world. Our focus is on important social issues: sustainable food clusters, food security, the biobased economy, energy, water and climate. Sustainable economic developments in an international setting take a central role in this regard.

There is increasing demand for our expertise in the measurement of sustainability performances in the agrarian sector/agricultural chains, including the translation of such measurements into policy and management decisions. We are therefore looking for a senior researcher in sustainability measurements with a strong affinity with the agricultural sector to join and strengthen our expertise group.

Job profile

  • As a scientific expert, contributes to determining the direction of the development of the research topic of sustainability performance measurements in the agrarian sector/agricultural chains, and takes care of the scientific embedding of this within the expertise group/LEI.
  • Identifies client questions, is able to translate these into knowledge products and - as a knowledge partner - is a scientific sparring partner for the client.
  • Coordinates large-scale and pioneering Dutch and international research projects for government bodies and companies, and provides leadership to several project teams in an inspiring and project-focused manner.
  • Maintains an active network with clients, stakeholders and collaborative partners.
  • Presents and disseminates research results in various ways, ranging from scientific publications to presentations for clients.

Information about projects

As an applied research institute, we carry out projects for both national government bodies within the Netherlands (such as the Ministry of Economic Affairs and the Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment) and international government bodies (including the EU) as well as assignments for the business community within the Netherlands and internationally (for instance for the AgroFood top sector and the Horticulture & Planting Materials top sector). Examples of this are the sector report Sustainable Dairy Chain (, the Sustainable Agriculture Monitor, and Measuring Sustainability ( International projects include: ENREMILK (LCA dairy industry) and FLINT (monitoring the sustainability performance of agriculture and horticulture companies in the EU).

Another pioneering international project is The Sustainability Consortium (TSC,, in which LEI Wageningen UR is cooperating with NGOs (WNF), companies (Unilever, Ahold, BASF) and universities to develop international standards for the measurement of the sustainability of products as a basis for improving the sustainability of the production chains. The large-scale application of these methods by companies makes a significant contribution to a more sustainable world.

Job requirements

  • University level (in terms of work and academic ability), preferably with an economic or business management background.
  • Demonstrable relevant knowledge of and experience in sustainability initiatives and methods, such as GRI and LCA.
  • A completed doctoral thesis (PhD) in this field is a plus.
  • Demonstrable affinity with sustainability issues in the agrarian sector/agricultural chain.
  • Access to an extensive network of people within Dutch and international government bodies and companies, and a good networker, able to bring about cooperative relationships through a strong feel for marketing and market development.
  • A good track record in the acquisition, establishment and execution of research projects.
  • Willing to take an international perspective and make regular trips abroad. A good command of the English language is therefore essential.
  • The successful candidate will also have the following personal characteristics: a team player, results-oriented, client-oriented, entrepreneurial and innovative.

Terms of employment

We offer a challenging job in a Dutch and international environment with varied work activities in a pleasant, open work culture and with ample opportunity for personal growth. In the first instance, we will offer a fixed-term employment contract (for one year), with the possibility of that contract being extended once the candidate's full suitability has been demonstrated and the order portfolio has been filled satisfactorily. Depending on the candidate's prior experience, the salary will be set between €3,497 and €5,247 gross per month (salary scale 12) on a full-time basis (36 hours per week). A working week of 32 hours is negotiable. LEI Wageningen UR also offers good fringe benefits.

Location: The Hague

Contact information

For more information, please contact Anita van der Knijff (Head of Expertise Group Performance & Impact Agrosectors) on telephone number +31 (0)70-3358181. Telephone number: +31 (0)70-3358181


You can apply online up until 11 May 2014 via

The Dutch name is: Senior Onderzoeker Duurzaamheidsmeting met affiniteit met agrarische sector.

Only responses received via this application button will be accepted.

The first interviews will take place on 21 May 2014.
The second round of interviews will take place on 28 May 2014.