PhD Student

Last application date
Feb 14, 2020 23:59
LA27 - Department of Agricultural Economics
Employment category
Doctoral fellow
Limited duration
MSc. in Bio-Science Engineering (Technology), Economics or Applied economics, Food Sciences, Food Technology; or a similar, relevant field
Occupancy rate
Vacancy Type
Research staff

Job description

Job Description

Topic: Socio-economic research about healthy, plant-based food products

SMART PROTEIN is a revolutionary new EU project (Horizon2020), where a range of ground-breaking new-protein foods (including plant-based meats, fish, seafood, cheese, dairy products and baked goods), will be created from by-products of pasta, bread and beer. The first wave of products should enter the market by 2025 and contribute to a more sustainable food consumption. In order to successfully launch those new products in the future, the Department of Agricultural Economics is looking for an enthusiastic researcher to help with the socio-economic research activities in this project, which mainly focus on consumer studies (e.g. acceptability of the products) and stakeholder analysis. The candidate will work at the Department of Agricultural Economics, under the supervision of prof. Xavier Gellynck and prof. Hans De Steur. The candidate will be embedded in a motivated and dedicated group of researchers with various backgrounds.

Profile of the candidate

Profile of the candidate

• MSc. in Bio-Science Engineering (Technology), Economics or Applied economics, Food Sciences, Food Technology; or a similar, relevant field.

• Good MSc. results • Excellent communication skills in English – both orally and written

• Basic understanding of quantitative research methods, e.g. surveys, quantitative data analysis, …

• Strong interest in applied social and economic research, and in the topic in particular.


• Development of the research framework and research protocols

• Collection and analysis of primary data obtained through qualitative and quantitative research methods

• Active interaction and collaboration with other researchers and partners involved in SmartProtein and the Department of Agricultural Economics

• Drafting of project deliverables related to the socio-economic research activities

• Synthesizing the research findings into peer-reviewed journal articles

• Presentation of results to academic and non-academic audiences, e.g. at national or international conferences, seminars, workshops


• PhD candidate researcher: Full-time, fixed-term appointment for initially 1 year, yearly renewable after positive evaluation (during the project).

•Additional benefits as employee of Ghent University (for more information see

• The opportunity to follow academic, thematic and skills training courses at Ghent University

• A dynamic and multi-cultural work environment

• Participation in a collaborative international research project managed by a highly motivated and top-level research consortium

• The opportunity to engage fully in research on a highly topical subject which combines both academic and industry partners.

• The opportunity to be involved in research driven towards tangible results that will lead to actual products in the supermarket, and contribute to more sustainable food consumption patterns in Europe.

How to apply

Interested candidates should submit an application, including a motivation letter and CV (including overview of grades), no later than February 14, 2020 by email to Hans De Steur ( For further information about the vacancy, you can contact Only shortlisted candidates will be notified (February 21, 2020) and interviewed during February-March 2020. Intended starting date: Preferably, 1st of April, or earlier if possible.