TU Delft

Postdoc(s) Energy Transition Lab

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Faculty Technology, Policy and Management

The Faculty of Technology, Policy and Management (TPM) makes an important contribution to solving the complex technical and social challenges that we face as a society. Challenges such as energy, climate, mobility, IT, water and cyber security. This requires a multidisciplinary approach that goes beyond technology. Our education and research are therefore at the intersection of technology, society and management. We combine insights from the engineering sciences with those from the humanities and social sciences. We develop robust models and designs, are internationally oriented, and have extensive networks in science and practice.

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Functie omschrijving

We can offer you two fulltime post doc positions for each two years.

The first position relates to a research project with the objective to capture behaviour in the energy transition, led by Gerdien de Vries. Capturing behaviour in the energy transition is increasingly important as actors at all levels need to take action. Policies on energy behaviour could benefit strongly from behavioural insights. Unfortunately, research that could provide these insights is often discipline-specific and fragmented, making it hard to use. At the faculty of Technology, Policy, and Management, we study different types of behaviour on multiple levels from a variety of scientific disciplines. For example, conscious, individual behaviour is often approached from an ethical perspective. Whereas collective, automatic behaviour is often approached from an (institutional) economy or social perspective. As a post doc in this research project, you are challenged to integrate research perspectives, methods, tools, and analyses from different scientific disciplines to capture and explain a broad range of behaviour of multiple actors in the energy transition to increase the (short-term and long-term) effectiveness of energy-transition policies. Furthermore, you are largely responsible for the coordination of this research project.

The second position relates to a research project on design of the energy transition, led by Emile Chappin. Designing the energy transition, in terms of ‘comprehensive engineering’ is fundamental for the functioning of our society in the coming decades. However, no comprehensive methods exist to come to appropriate designs of such complex, large/multi-scale, multi-carrier, multi-actor, multi-infrastructure, value-laden systems. Very many socio-technical scenarios are feasible under different sets of assumptions. Different kinds of uncertainties (policy, decision, systemic, normative etc.) limit, on a fundamental level, what comprehensive designs are ‘good’. “It depends” no longer suffices, we need to be precise and specific about what are promising strategies for the energy transition. As a post doc in this research project, you are challenged to integrate quantitative methods and data in a multi-modelling design framework. These methods are all present at the faculty of TPM but so far, mainly developed in silos. This framework, including the supporting tools (hardware, software), enable us to set up, execute, and study testable designs that integrates those methods and perspectives on the energy transition. This leads to a data and model-driven design approach. By doing this systematically, best practices for design in socio-technical systems are extracted. Furthermore, you are largely responsible for the coordination of this research project.

The post docs in both projects work in close collaboration with each other, the lab directors, and the lab associates, including staff and students from different scientific backgrounds. The lab has a Master Thesis Circle (with circa five students). You will be encouraged to co-supervise students on research projects that are closely related to your own research.

You will be working for the TPM Energy Transition Lab. This lab is initated by the faculty of Technology, Policy, and Management of Delft Technology of University in April 2020. The lab has the ambition to perform innovative and interdisciplinary research on the development of new approaches, methods and tools for fostering an effective, fair, legitimate energy transition. From various perspectives and with various (multi)methods, the lab studies behavior in and design of the energy transition. The TPM Energy Transition Lab aims to develop out-of-the-box, high risk activities that connect energy researchers of the TPM faculty. The Lab is directed by energy researchers from different scientific backgrounds and from different departments of the faculty.

Functie eisen

  • PhD degree in engineering, social sciences or equivalent in the area of sustainability, innovation, energy, climate change, and/or policy analysis.

  • A clear interest in understanding both the technological as the social side of energy systems and the impact of transitions on society.

  • Experience in interdisciplinary and/or transdisciplinary research.

  • Very good analytical and methodological skills.

  • A track record with regard to relevant publications.

  • Experience in writing grant proposals.

  • Fluent in written and spoken English.

  • Very good communication skills and interest in collaborating with fellow researchers as well as conveying research outcomes to non-academic stakeholders.

  • The ability to work independently and as a team player (i.e. willingness to interact well with your colleagues and partners within the lab).

  • You are expected to present your research at international conferences and publish your results in scientific journals.

  • A creative, open, entrepreneurial mindset and willingness to grow with the lab.


The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, a discount for health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. Coming to Delft Service organizes diverse events for new international employees and their accompanying partners, like Partner Career Workshops and Dutch Culture Workshops. Located on campus are the International Children’s Centre and an international primary school which are subject to availability as well as several bilingual schools in the nearby surrounding. Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities.

Informeren en solliciteren

For information about this vacancy, you can contact Gerdien de Vries or Emile Chappin, Directors of the Energy Transition Lab, email: S.I.Tober@tudelft.nl, tel: +(0)15 27 81459.

For information about the selection procedure, please contact Olivie Beek, HR Advisor, email: vacature-tbm@tudelft.nl.

Please send your application including cv to vacature-tbm@tudelft.nl latest by July 31, 2020.

A pre-employment screening can be part of the application procedure.

Acquisitie naar aanleiding van deze vacature wordt niet op prijs gesteld.

Uren per week: 36-40 uur per week

Salaris: € 2.790,- tot € 4.402,- per maand


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