Published on
September 24, 2015
Complex system approaches applied to Foods (Tenure Track)


Chair group                                                                : Physics and Physical Chemistry of Foods


Size of appointment                                                  : 1.0 fte _______________________________________________________________________________

 We are looking for an enthusiastic researcher and teacher to explore complex systems approaches (network analysis, scaling, cluster analysis, ...) and apply these to agri- and foods problems. She/he should have a background in physics with a strong mathematical basis, or, alternatively, a background in mathematics with expertise in physics, and should have affinity doing experiments. The candidate should convey a clear interest in conducting trans-disciplinary research.    

 In a challenging career trajectory you are, as Assistant Professor in the field of physics and physical chemistry of Foods responsible for the organization, implementation and coordination of new research activities in the field of complex systems for Agri-Food as well as building up a leading international position. In this position you will also be motivating and teaching students and develop new courses. Training and coaching is provided for the Assistant Professor to accomplish all this.

 Information Tenure track Wageningen UR

Wageningen University offers talented young scientists a challenging new career trajectory, the Tenure track. By introducing this trajectory, our aim, is to attract top talent and to stimulate excellence.

From the position of Assistant Professor, candidates can grow into a Professor holding a personal chair in a maximum period of twelve years. In addition, they will be given the chance to build up their own research line. It goes without saying that candidates will be intensively supervised and coached during the trajectory. Moreover, this transparant career path can lead to a permanent employment contract.

As we will be selecting only candidates of high potential to take part in the Tenure Track trajectory, for all participating candidates, this will be a good stepping stone to a further career within Wageningen UR or elsewhere.

For more information about Tenure Track within Wageningen UR look at


As Assistant Professor you are an ambitious and enthusiastic scientist and a team player, devoted to research and education in complex system approaches applied to food.

You also have:

  • a successfully completed academic study (MSc level; recognised in The Netherlands) in physics/physical chemistry/material science and/or mathematics, or related fields
  • a PhD in physics/physical chemistry/material science and/or mathematics, or related fields;
  • knowledge and expertise in physics/physical chemistry/material science and mathematics (in particular network analysis, scaling, statistics, ...)
  • ample experience with management of projects;
  • acquiring of research funding;
  • excellent communication skills;
  • didactic qualities and enthusiasm for teaching and working with students;

Furthermore you are an ambitious and enthusiastic scientist and a team player.

 We offer you as talented scientist a challenging career trajectory called Tenure Track. From the position of Assistant Professor you can grow into a Professor holding a Personal Chair. Of course training and coaching are provided and interdisciplinary (international) cooperation is stimulated. You will also be given the chance to build up your own research line. As we will only be selecting outstanding candidates to take part in Tenure Track, this will be a good stepping stone to a further career within Wageningen UR or elsewhere.

We offer a temporary contract with the possibility of extension, for 38 hours per week. Gross starting salary based on previous experience.

For more information about Tenure Track within Wageningen UR look at

 Additional information

For more information about this position, please contact Prof. E. van der Linden, chair holder, telephone number +31 317485417. For more information about the selection procedure, please contact  R. van Meegen, HRM telephone number +31 317485466


You can apply to

 We are part of the cluster Food Technology within the department of Agrotechnology and Food Sciences.

Our chair group integrates physics, (meso-)structure design and development, and applications in food, to enable innovations more effectively. The applications refer to different contexts, ranging from harvesting, processing, storage, transport, consumption to digestion. We aim to deliver fundamental knowledge, new meso-structures, and application concepts, for academic partners, industry and society, and to educate students to apply such integration in their future careers. Our focus is on the meso-scale in relation to the molecular and macroscopic scale. The fundamental knowledge refers to understanding how food material properties (physical and physico-chemical) relate to ingredient molecular composition, temperature, time and externally applied conditions.

An example of a complex systems approach is to use information theoretical measures to analyse the interplay between chewing behaviour, mechanical breakdown of food in the mouth, and sensory perception, and to use the analysis to predict chewing time before swallowing.

Another example is to analyse the fracture behaviour of solid foods. Yet another example is to use information theoretical measures to analyse the interplay between processing methodologies, ingredient use, product properties and its evoked sensory and digestive responses. 

In general, the ambition of integration requires us to analyse the relations between different types of information. In particular regarding topics like for example sustainability, food security, and eating behaviour, we need to consider a complex systems approach. That approach will enable to have the group’s focus become an integral part of the interdisciplinary efforts in the agri-food field. This makes the tenure track position activities complementary to the already existing activities in the group and will strengthen the group portfolio. See for more information on the group

 See for more information on the group For inquiries about the vacancy please contact Prof. dr. E. van der Linden (+31-317 485417) or Mr. R. van Meegen (+31-317 485466). Please send the application including Curriculum Vitae to K. den Ridder (Stippeneng 2, 6708 WE Wageningen, The Netherlands).

 The Agrotechnology & Food Sciences Group is part of Wageningen UR where fundamental and applied sciences complement each other. As an important European player, we carry out top-level research and work alongside authoritative partners within the international business world as well as the government on “Healthy food in a biobased society”. We have a crucial role in innovations within the market. In short, we are an interesting, international employer of stature.

 Wageningen University and Research Centre
Delivering a substantial contribution to the quality of life. That's our focus – each and every day. Within our domain, healthy food and living environment, we search for answers to issues affecting society – such as sustainable food production, climate change and alternative energy. Of course, we don’t do this alone. Every day, 6,500 people work on ‘the quality of life’, turning ideas into reality, on a global scale.