Are you interested in supramolecular chemistry, catalysis and sustainable chemistry and looking for a challenging PhD project, then we may have the ideal position for you. In the HomKat-group that is at the forefront in the field of supramolecular catalysis, we are looking for a motivated PhD student, who under the direct supervision of Dr Sonja Pullen will work on the border between supramolecular coordination cages and metal-organic frameworks (MOFs). The newly designed and prepared systems will be used as catalysts for the conversion of small molecules (relevant for energy storage) and in organic photo-redox catalysis.

What are you going to do?

As PhD student you will be part of the HomKat group, providing a stimulating environment with knowledge in the area of supramolecular chemistry, homogeneous catalysis and solar fuel devices. In the new subgroup of Sonja Pullen, you will work together to develop novel, chemically stable coordination cages, introduce catalysts as building blocks or guests, and perform functional and mechanistic studies. For this, we utilize advanced techniques such as (spectro-) electrochemistry, spectroscopy, and gas-chromatography. Furthermore, we compare their reactivity to analogous MOFs. The envisioned research is highly interdisciplinary with several promising potential applications. The PhD candidate has sufficient freedom to shape the project in the direction of experience and own interest. The working conditions are excellent with state-of-the-art research facilities.

What do we require?

  • An MSc degree in chemistry or chemical engineering;
  • a strong background in inorganic chemistry, MOF chemistry and/or homogeneous catalysis;
  • practical experience in one or more of the following: organic/inorganic synthesis, structural characterization (NMR, MS and/or XRD, PXRD), electrochemistry and/or spectroscopy (UV-vis, emission, spectro-electrochemistry);
  • excellent communication skills in English;
  • strongly self-motivated and eager to learn.

Our offer

A temporary contract for 38 hours per week for the duration of 4 years (initial contract will be for a period of 18 months and after satisfactory evaluation it will be extended for a total duration of 4 years) and should lead to a dissertation (PhD thesis). We will draft an educational plan that includes attendance of courses and (international) meetings. We also expect you to assist in teaching undergraduates and master students. 

The position is available now, we will recruit until a suitable candidate has been found.

The salary, depending on relevant experience before the beginning of the employment contract, will be €2,395 to €3,061 (scale P) gross per month, based on a full-time contract of 38 hours a week. This is exclusive 8% holiday allowance and 8.3% end-of-year bonus. A favourable tax agreement, the ‘30% ruling’, may apply to non-Dutch applicants. The Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities is applicable.

Are you curious about our extensive package of secondary employment benefits like our excellent opportunities for study and development? Then find out more about working at the Faculty of Science.

About the Faculty of Science and the Van’t Hoff Institute for Molecular Science

The Faculty of Science has a student body of around 6,500, as well as 1,600 members of staff working in education, research or support services. Researchers and students at the Faculty of Science are fascinated by every aspect of how the world works, be it elementary particles, the birth of the universe or the functioning of the brain.

The Van’t Hoff Institute for Molecular Sciences (HIMS) is one of eight institutes of the University of Amsterdam (UvA) Faculty of Science. HIMS performs internationally recognized chemistry and molecular research, curiosity driven as well as application driven. This is done in close cooperation with the chemical, flavour & food, medical and high-tech industries. Research is organized into four themes: Synthesis & Catalysis, Analytical Chemistry, Computational Chemistry and Molecular Photonics.


Do you have questions about this vacancy? Or do you want to know more about our organisation? Please contact:

Job application

The UvA is an equal-opportunity employer. We prioritise diversity and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for everyone. We value a spirit of enquiry and perseverance, provide the space to keep asking questions, and promote a culture of curiosity and creativity.

Do you recognize yourself in the job profile? Then we look forward to receiving your application by 15 December 2020. You may apply online by using the link below.

Applications should include:

  • a single PDF document including your motivation letter, CV, a list of publications and names of two referees

Potential candidates will be invited for an interview.

No agencies please

Apply now

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