Climate change, food scarcity, nitrogen emissions, animal welfare and consumer all demand reduction of dairy use. Creating milk alternatives that make good cheese is however extremely difficult and requires high tech interventions in natural processes. This results in many ambiguities and ambivalence on the uptake of such alternatives with stakeholders like consumers, but also dairy farmers.

Are you a PhD graduate interested in combining ethics and emperical researchfor studying societal aspects of animal-free milk as a new food technology? Do you want to work with stakeholders around innovative technologies that are going to transform food systems? Are you motivated to expand scholarship on ambivalence and ambiguity?  Then this postdoc vacancy at the Philosophy group of WURmay appeal to you.

Your main task will be to strengthen and develop scholarship on ambivalence and ambiguity in processes of moral change, theoretically and methodologically.

To do so we expect you will

  • Carry out focus groups with farmers and consumers to study responses to animal free dairy, with special attention for ambivalence and ambiguity.
  • Devise future scenarios for farmer’s inclusion in animal-free dairy production
  • Work closely with other disciplines: consumer science, and protein engineering
  • Explore and develop the potential of taking ambivalence and ambiguity as a starting point for finding constructive ways of dealing with tensions concerning animal free dairy – and new technology more generally
  • Carry out project wide administrative tasks

The postdoc position is for 3.5 years. We provide the candidate substantial time and support to develop a research line on ethical and social aspects of ambiguity and ambivalence around precision fermentation with the transformation of the dairy sector as an exemplar of how new technologies are transforming food production. 

We ask

We are looking for a candidate with the following key qualifications:

  • PhD degree in humanities or social sciences;
  • Strong social empirical research experience with experience in qualitative research and engaging with various stakeholders;
  • Affinity with, or strong interest in ethics of technology;
  • Affinity with working in a multidisciplinary group in an international context;
  • Interest or experience in project management;
  • Strong English language skills (evident from your thesis and/or publications); This position requires an excellent English language proficiency  (a mininum of CEFR B2 level). For more information about this proficiency level, please visit our special language page.
  • Dutch fluency is an asset but not required.

We offer

Wageningen University & Research offers excellent terms of employment. A few highlights from our Collective Labour Agreement include:
sabbatical leave, study leave, and partially paid parental leave;

  • working hours that can be discussed and arranged so that they allow for the best possible work-life balance;
  • the option to accrue additional compensation / holiday hours by working more, up to 40 hours per week;
  • there is a strong focus on vitality and you can make use of the sports facilities available on campus for a small fee;
  • a fixed December bonus of 8.3%;
  • excellent pension scheme.

In addition to these first-rate employee benefits, you will of course receive a good salary. Depending on your experience, we offer a competitive gross salary of between € 2.960,- and € 4.670,- for a full-time working week of 38 hours, in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreements for Dutch Universities (CAO-NU). (scale 10). We offer you a temporary position for a period of 3.5 years . Gross salary per month €  in the first year rising up to €  per month in the fourth year for a full working week of 38 hours in accordance with the Collective Labor Agreement for the Wageningen University.

Wageningen University & Research encourages internal advancement opportunities and mobility with an internal recruitment policy. There are plenty of options for personal initiative in a learning environment, and we provide excellent training opportunities. We are offering a unique position in an international environment with a pleasant and open working atmosphere.

You are going to work at the greenest and most innovative campus in Holland, and at a university that has been chosen as the “Best University” in the Netherlands for the 17th consecutive time.

Coming from abroad
Wageningen University & Research is the university and research centre for life sciences. The themes we deal with are relevant to everyone around the world and Wageningen, therefore, has a large international community and a lot to offer to international employees. Applicants from abroad moving to the Netherlands may qualify for a special tax relief, known as the 30% ruling. Our team of advisors on Dutch immigration procedures will help you with the visa application procedures for yourself and, if applicable, for your family.

Feeling welcome also has everything to do with being well informed. Wageningen University & Research’s International Community page contains practical information about what we can do to support international employees and students coming to Wageningen. Furthermore, we can assist you with any additional advice and information about helping your partner to find a job, housing, schooling, and other issues.

More information

For more information about this position, please contact Dr. Zoë Robaey, Assistant Professor, by e-mail
For more information about the procedure, please contact Jeanine Drost-van ‘t Veer, Corporate recruiter via;

Do you want to apply?
You can apply directly using the apply button on the vacancy page on our website which will allow us to process your personal information with your approval.

This vacancy will be listed up to and including 14 August 2022. We hope to schedule the first job interviews on 22 August 2022.

Equal opportunities
Wageningen University & Research (WUR) employs a large number of people with very different backgrounds and qualities, who inspire and motivate each other. We want every talent to feel at home in our organisation and be offered the same career opportunities. We therefore especially welcome applications from people who are underrepresented at WUR.

We are

Wageningen University & Research
The mission of Wageningen University and Research is “To explore the potential of nature to improve the quality of life”. Under the banner Wageningen University & Research, Wageningen University and the specialised research institutes of the Wageningen Research Foundation have joined forces in contributing to finding solutions to important questions in the domain of healthy food and living environment.

With its roughly 30 branches, 7.200 employees and 13.200 students, Wageningen University & Research is one of the leading organisations in its domain. An integrated approach to problems and the cooperation between various disciplines are at the heart of Wageningen’s unique approach. WUR has been named Best Employer in the Education category for 2019-2020.

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