The Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry invite applications for the position of Doctoral Researcher in Food and Consumer Sciences, The Doctoral Researcher will be appointed for a fixed-term 4-year contract (start date: September 1, 2023, or according to agreement) to complete a Doctoral Degree in a project entitled “Innovative meat analogs from whey protein and plant protein/fiber to facilitate omnivores’ transition to more sustainable diets”. The position will be supervised by a multidisciplinary team from two of the six units of the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry:

Docent Kirsi Jouppila (Senior University Lecturer in Food Technology), Dr. Asmo Kemppinen (University Lecturer in Dairy Science and Technology) and Dr. Antti Knaapila (University Researcher in Sensory Science) from the Department of Food and Nutrition, and Prof. Mari Niva (Professor in Consumer Studies) from the Department of Economics and Management).

The project aims at gaining knowledge on how whey protein can be used together with plant proteins and fiber to produce hybrid meat analogs using high-moisture extrusion. Physical and sensory properties and consumer acceptance of such hybrid meat analogs will be assessed. Consumers’ attitudes to hybrid meat analogs containing both animal and plant-based ingredients and expectations for meat analogs will be studied using an online survey. The doctoral researcher is expected to conduct research in all of these research areas.


We are looking for a highly motivated and skilled researcher with a relevant Master’s degree and experience in food science and technology, sensory science and/or consumer studies. Also, willingness to extend expertise in the aforementioned areas is required. 

A successful candidate should be able to:

  • Design, conduct, and report research within the scope of the project.
  • Contribute to undergraduate student supervision and teaching within the departments.
  • Engage with the scientific community, research partners and the wider public internationally and domestically through scientific publications, conference presentations, press releases, blogs etc.
  • Contribute to applying further funding (e.g., travel grants and research costs).

The candidate is expected to have:

Education, experience and technical skills

  • A relevant Master’s degree, including experience in food science and technology, sensory science and/or consumer studies
  • Laboratory working skills in food sciences
  • Experience in statistical analysis of quantitative data
  • Fluency in English and excellent writing skills
  • Finnish language skills will be an advantage for the researcher to be able to conduct surveys among the Finnish population.

Personal attributes and competencies

  • Excellent analytical and innovative research planning skills.
  • Interest in working for sustainability of food systems
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, experience in working within multicultural and multidisciplinary teams
  • High motivation for academic research in the fields of the project, having initiative and capability of working independently as well as in team environments.
  • Willingness to continuous improvement based on constructive evaluation, self-reflection and learning.

The appointee should either already have the right to pursue a doctoral degree at the University of Helsinki by the start of the appointment or apply for the right and obtain it within the probationary period of six months of their appointment. If the candidate does not already have the right to pursue a doctoral degree at the University of Helsinki, it must be applied for separately,

The starting salary of the Doctoral researcher will be based on level 2 of the demands level chart for teaching and research personnel in the salary system of Finnish universities. In addition, the appointee will be paid a salary component based on personal performance. The starting salary of the Doctoral researcher will be ca. 2200–2400 euros/month, depending on the appointees’ qualifications and experience.

The University of Helsinki offers comprehensive services to its employees, including occupational health care and health insurance, sports facilities, and opportunities for professional development. A six-month trial period will be applied.

How to apply:

Please submit your application as a single pdf file using the University of Helsinki Recruitment System. The application must include:

1) A cover letter (1–2 pages) explaining the applicant’s motivation for the research work and experience and skills in the fields of present study.

2) Curriculum vitae (max 3 pages) showing the applicant’s education, completed qualifications, work experience, possible list of publications and contact information of 2 persons for references.

3) Copies of Master’s and Bachelor’s degree certificates and official transcripts of the records, and their translations, if the originals are not in Finnish, Swedish or English.

4) Copy of the abstract of the applicant’s Master’s thesis. 

We may request shortlisted applicants to submit a copy of their Master’s thesis via the electronic recruitment system after the application deadline. External applicants, please submit your application using the University of Helsinki Recruitment System via the Apply Now button.

Applicants who have a username and a valid employment contract, a grant researcher’s contract or a visiting researcher’s contract at the University of Helsinki are requested to leave their application by using the employee login. The University of Helsinki welcomes applicants from a variety of genders and linguistic and cultural backgrounds.

 About us:

The Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry is nationally unique faculty with a high international standing. The mission of the faculty is to promote the sustainable use of renewable natural resources through scientific research and research-based teaching. We focus on agricultural and forest sciences, food and nutrition, microbiology, as well as on economics and management.

We cover the full natural resource chain from farm to fork, the entire field of forest sciences from soil chemistry to marketing, as well as the environmental effects of related activities. Graduates from the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry are versatile experts in biosciences and business, able to meet the needs of both the business sector and society at large.

The University of Helsinki is among the leading multidisciplinary research universities in the world. In addition to its 11 faculties, the University includes several independent institutes, some of which are jointly operated with other universities. Some 35,000 students are currently pursuing an undergraduate or a postgraduate degree at the University of Helsinki.

Why Finland and Helsinki: Finland is a member of the EU, has high quality and inexpensive childcare, free schooling and tertiary training (also in English), generous family benefits and healthcare, and was recently ranked as the best country in the world for expat families


The closing date for applications is 7 August at 23:59 EEST.

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