Professor of Starch Biotechnology

University of Copenhagen Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences

Professor in Starch Biotechnology

Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences
Faculty of Science
University of Copenhagen 

The Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences invites applications for a position as Professor in starch biotechnology starting 1 January 2021 or as soon as possible thereafter. Place of employment will be Section of Plant Glycobiology, Thorvaldsensvej 40, 1871 Frederiksberg C, Denmark

The successful candidate has a well-documented, strong, independent and international research profile with an appropriate background in plant and polysaccharide biotechnology. The appointed professor must be highly qualified within the field of starch research both within basic and applied research utilising an inter-disciplinary approach with the highest international standard. The area will be within starch biotechnology with emphasis on starch bioengineering, materials and food science and technology with a strong emphasis on contributing to our understanding and utilisation of widely different starch resources. The research should connect basic research at the molecular and physical levels to applications within food, nutrition and biomaterials. The position requires extensive cooperation with academic and industrial partners both at national and international level. The present position focuses mainly on biotechnology but interacts strongly with the agriculture and environment research areas.

The activities should cover the following sub areas within Plant Glycobiology:  

  • Starch biosynthesis, degradation and their regulation
  • Clean, enzyme-assisted and physical modification of starch
  • Bioengineering directed towards starch modification
  • Functionality and nutrition of starch and polysaccharides food systems
  • Starch- and polysaccharides-based materials and bioplastics
  • Analytical biochemistry applied to plant resources

Qualifications are expected within the following areas: 

  • Experience with project management and having leadership skills
  • Documented track record within collaborative academic and industrial research projects
  • Capacity to build and maintain an independent research group with a clear vision 
  • Track record for obtaining research grants 
  • A visionary, inspiring, collaborative mindset 
  • Inspiring teaching and outreach ability

The applicant shall actively contribute to teaching at all academic levels within biotechnology, biochemistry and polysaccharide technology thereby contributing to the relevant Bachelor and Master programmes within biotechnology, biochemistry and food science. Teaching at bachelor level is in Danish and it is expected that the candidate will be able to teach in Danish within three years. Applicants are required to have university level teaching experience, documented teaching competencies and must be able to explain and reflect upon own teaching practice and portfolio. Formal pedagogical training or supervision equivalent to the University of Copenhagen teacher training programme for assistant professors is required.

Duties include the applicant’s own research, development of the field, assessment tasks, grant applications, and research management such as supervision and training of research fellows and other staff. The successful applicant must also teach, supervise, prepare and participate in examinations, and fulfill other tasks requested by the Department.

Assessment of applicants will primarily consider their level of documented, original scientific production at an international level, including contributions to developments in their field, as well as their documented teaching qualifications. Managerial and out-reach qualifications of applicants including ability to attract external funding will also be considered.

Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences (PLEN) develops the scientific areas in the core of the three main scientific fields Biotechnology, Agriculture and Environment and use the synergy between these fields to develop new strategic research areas. PLEN is highly recognized for excellence in research, education, and industrial collaboration and is an international workplace.

Further information on the Department is linked at Inquiries about the position can be made to Head of Department, Svend Christensen +45 51489421, or Head of Section, Bodil Jørgensen +45 35333466,

The University wishes our staff to reflect the diversity of society and thus welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background.

Terms of employment

The position is covered by the Memorandum on Job Structure for Academic Staff.

Terms of appointment and payment accord to the agreement between the Ministry of Finance and The Danish Confederation of Professional Associations on Academics in the State.

Commencing salary is currently DKK 631.596 including annual supplement (+ pension DKK 108.003).

Negotiation for salary supplement is possible.

The application including all attachments must be in English and submitted electronically by clicking APPLY NOW below.

Please include

  • Curriculum vitae including information about external funding
  • Diplomas (Master and PhD degree or equivalent)
  • Research plan – description of current and future research plans
  • Description and documentation of teaching experience and qualifications according to university guidelines
  • Complete publication list
  • Separate reprints of 5 particularly relevant papers

The deadline for applications is 10 June 2020. 23:59 GMT+2.

After the expiry of the deadline for applications, the authorized recruitment manager selects applicants for assessment on the advice of the Interview Committee.

You can read about the recruitment process at

Interviews/trial lectures will be held on 20 October 2020.

Please refer to the following no. in future communication in this case: 211-0045/20-2K.


Part of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), and among Europe’s top-ranking universities, the University of Copenhagen promotes research and teaching of the highest international standard. Rich in tradition and modern in outlook, the University gives students and staff the opportunity to cultivate their talent in an ambitious and informal environment. An effective organisation – with good working conditions and a collaborative work culture – creates the ideal framework for a successful academic career.


Svend Christensen


Application deadline: 10-06-2020
Employment start: 01-01-2021
Working hours: Full time
Department/Location: Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences