Professor in microbial ecology: Belgium

The KU Leuven has an open position for a Professor in microbial ecology for the bio-based circular economy.

Recycling of organic waste can turn a fossil fuel based economy into a bio-based economy. The future in this domain targets the development of new technologies that use organic waste streams for gaining products with high added value. The main discipline to develop these technologies via biological means is microbial ecology, the field which studies the interactions among microorganisms. The biochemical conversion technologies require a social network of different microorganisms. It is postulated that a better understanding of the interactions among microorganisms and of their spatial and temporal structure in for instance biofilms, is key to develop functionally active and stable microbial communities that catalyze these bioconversions.

The KU Leuven has a full time academic vacancy for a microbial ecologist to perform research on novel technologies that support the bio-based circular economy. The new professor has to use current state of the art and new methods to take up the challenge to understand the deeper ecology and functioning of microbial communities governing bioconversion processes of interest for circular economy in order to propose measures for improvement and control. Evidently, this microbial ecology approach will represent a complementary asset for the ongoing resource recovery research.

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