Ghent University is a world of its own. Employing more than 8,000 people, it is actively involved in education and research, management and administration, as well as technical and social service provision on a daily basis. It is one of the largest, most exciting employers in the area and offers great career opportunities. With its 11 faculties and more than 80 departments offering state-of-the-art study programmes grounded in research in a wide range of academic fields, Ghent University is a logical choice for its staff and students.

YOUR TASKS: The poultry industry wants to keep on growing, while at the same time keeping an eye on animal welfare and adhering to a changing regulation. This will require a further automatization of the welfare and behavior assessment of poultry while offering opportunities to steer behavior in real-time. To enable this, the IMEC.ICON Welfare Improving monitoring Solutions for cHickens (WISH) project plans to design innovative sensor technology and flock based analysis methods. This should lead to a new gold standard in poultry welfare monitoring.

The need for automated assessment: Assessing the behavior and welfare of poultry still requires a high measure of manual labor. This is not only costly and subjective, but also leads to late intervention and incorrect data interpretation. In the WISH project, the project partners will design a modular system-based toolbox of sensors and interpretation possibilities. These can be geared towards laboratories or industrial poultry farms.

A toolbox of innovative sensing and analysis

For laboratories, the WISH researchers foresee a high-end, full spectrum of functionalities. These will help clinical research organizations, feed additives labs, and developers of veterinary drug and welfare-improving systems. For commercial farms, customized combinations of the toolbox modules will be developed.

The WISH toolbox will be based on novel sensor technologies and flock-based analysis methods. These will be designed to continuously monitor chickens, provide feedback, and allow dynamic behavior steering in real-time with led light recipes and/or multifunctional platforms. All this to improve the productivity of poultry farming and the welfare of the animals.

Within the WISH project you will coordinate the various studies on broiler welfare and performance, and will supervise the 4 junior researchers listed above (research positions 1 – 4). He/she will be the first contact person for the junior researchers and will liaise with the principal investigators and project coordinators.


–    holds a thesis-based doctoral degree. Preferably a PhD in biological science, including animal science, veterinary science, zoology, bio-engineering or related disciplines

–    has a strong interest in poultry health and welfare with a drive to learn and adopt a variety of new techniques.

–    has good IT (MS Word/MS Excel/Powerpoint/Outlook), numeracy and statistical skills

–    has (or are willing to obtain) a FELASA Category C certificate to work with laboratory animals.

–    has a European driving license (category B)

–    is ambitious, practically skillful, able to work in a team setting, and has strong analytical problem-solving skills (creative, critical, and open-minded).

–    has excellent oral and written communication skills, and is proficient in English.

–    is driven to explore research questions independently and in depth

–    has a strong publication record

–    is good at motivating and supervising junior researchers


–    We offer you a contract of definite duration for 11.5 months for 60%.

–    Your contract will start on 16/03/2023 at the earliest.

–    Your remuneration will be determined by salary scale PD1 to PD4 (if you hold a PhD degree).  Click here for more information about our salary scales.

–    All Ghent University staff members enjoy a number of benefits, such as a wide range of training and education opportunities, 36 days of holiday leave (on an annual basis for a full-time job) supplemented by annual fixed bridge days, bicycle allowance and eco vouchers. Click here for a complete overview of all the staff benefits (in Dutch).

–    Working in a pleasant environment with a young and dynamic team of Ghent University in close collaboration with the Flanders Research Institute for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (ILVO)

–    Working in close collaboration with industrial partners


Apply online through the e-recruitment system before the application deadline (see below). We do not accept late applications or applications that are not submitted through the online system.

Your application must include the following documents:

–    In the field ‘CV’: your CV and an overview of your study results (merged into one pdf file)

–    In the field ‘Cover letter’: your application letter in pdf format

–    In the field ‘Diploma’: a transcript of the required degree (if already in your possession). If you have a foreign diploma in a language other than our national languages (Dutch, French or German) or English, please add a translation in one of the mentioned languages.

–    In the field “other documents”: two references or reference contacts, an overview of your study results

Note that the maximum file size for each field is 10 MB.

As Ghent University maintains an equal opportunities and diversity policy, everyone is encouraged to apply for this position.

MORE INFORMATION: For more information about this vacancy, please contact Prof. Gunther Antonissen ( Important: do NOT send your application by email, but apply online.


→   Solliciteren tot 07-02-2023 23:59 (Brussels time)
    →   Faculteit Diergeneeskunde  
    →   Vakgroep:  DI07 – Veterinaire en Biowetenschappen
    →   Tewerkstellingspercentage:60%

    →   Aantal posities: 1
    →   Type tewerkstelling: Contract van bepaalde tijd 
    →   Duur van de opdracht: 16/03/2023 – 29/02/2024 
    →   Geboden barema:  PD1 tot PD4 (doctoraatdiploma) 
    →   Diplomavoorwaarde: PhD

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