Researcher in Plant Developmental Biology in Breeding

Wageningen University

Researcher in Plant Developmental Biology in Breeding

Published on
May 30, 2022

Location Wageningen

We are looking for

Are you a researcher in plant development biology, interested to apply your knowledge of the genetic regulation of processes to breeding crops? We seek a candidate who can dissect the molecular mechanisms related to plant developmental biological processes (such as plant architecture, flowering, sink-source relationships) and who can exploit them as breeding targets for sustainable agricultural systems, ranging from mixed cropping outdoor systems to highly controlled indoor vertical farms. Do you like to collaborate with colleagues in and outside Plant Breeding to apply plant developmental concepts to new and established agronomically important crops? Do you like to turn ideas into projects together with partners? Then this vacancy may be interesting for you.

Plant Breeding is a merged unit of Wageningen Research and Wageningen University which conducts both fundamental and applied research and teaching. We are organised in research groups that, in collaboration, work on solutions to solve current challenges in agriculture related to global warming, loss of biodiversity and a growing world population. Among these solutions are new cultivation systems and new crops, which require novel breeding research. This demands researchers with knowledge of plant developmental processes and domestication traits with expertise in molecular genetic approaches.

You will initate and conduct research and you will be involved in acquisition to fund this research. Many of our projects are carried out in public-private partnerships, and involve MSc and PhD students. You may also have the opportunity to contribute to teaching courses related to your expertise for Plant Breeding MSc students.

We ask

We are looking for a researcher with a track record  in plant developmental biology and interested to apply this knowledge for breeding crops. We prefer candidates with experience in genomics, bioinformatics and molecular biology and interest to work with crops, with often complex genomes, in a plant breeding context. The successful candidate can initiate her/his own research line in the field of plant developmental biology aiming to breed crops for sustainable cultivation systems and is willing to spend max 20% of his/her time on teaching in the field of Plant biotechnology.

The candidate should have several of the following qualifications: 

  • Proven skills in research to unravel plant developmental processes
  • Knowledge of Plant Breeding
  • Able to translate fundamenal knowledge of plant developmental processes to new and established agronomically important crops
  • Interest in translating developmental biological aspects into breeding targets for novel cultivation systems
  • Experience or interest in project acquisition with public and private partners
  • Excellent communication skills, both oral and written.
  • Collaborative personality, interested in working with colleages and students
Wageningen University & Research is an international organisation. We expect our staff to have excellent command of the English language. This is an important factor in our selection process. Some job interviews will be in English. You will be informed beforehand should this be the case. This position requires an excellent English language proficiency (a mininum of CEFR C2 level). For more information about this proficiency level, please visit our special language page.

We offer

Wageningen University & Research offers excellent  terms of employment. A few highlights from our Collective Labour Agreement include:

  • working hours that can be discussed and arranged so that they allow for the best possible work-life balance;
  • the option to accrue additional flexible hours by working more, up to 40 hours per week;
  • sabbatical leave, study leave, and paid parental leave;
  • 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 4%;
  • excellent pension scheme.
For this position, we offer you, depending on your experience, a competitive salary from a minimum of € 2.836,- to a maximum of € 5.989,-  (Scale 10-12) for a full working week of 36 hours in accordance with the Collective Labor Agreement for Wageningen Research. A contract for 32 hours per week is also possible. The duration of the contract is initially for two years, with the possibility of a permanent position.  

Wageningen University & Research stimulates internal career opportunities and mobility with an internal recruitment policy. There are ample opportunities for own initiative in a learning environment.

We offer a versatile job in an international environment with varied activities in a pleasant and open working atmosphere.

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 Communitypage 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 function, please contact René Smulders, business unit manager Plant Breeding, telephone +31317480840 or email rene.smulders@wur.nl or Guusje Bonnema, research group leader of the Growth and Development group within Plant Breeding, telephone +31622565343 or e-mail Guusje.Bonnema@wur.nl

For more information about the procedure, please contact: vacaturemeldingen.psg@wur.nl.

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 July 1st, 2022. We anticipate that the interviews will take place in the first two weeks of July.


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. For more information please go to our inclusivity page. A good example of how WUR deals with inclusiveness can be read on the page working at WUR with a functional impairment.

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, 6.800 employees and 12.900 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.

These are the points our employees list as good reasons to come work at WUR: read the 5 reasons to come work at WUR

Plant Breeding, Wageningen University & Research (https://www.wur.nl/en/Research-Results/Research-Institutes/plant-research/Plant-Breeding.htm) is a merged unit of Wageningen Research and Wageningen University with around 200 people including MSc and PhD students and guest workers. We are a highly international group with more than 30 nationalities organised in ten research groups. We conduct fundamental, strategic and applied research and provide teaching at all educational (BSc, MSc and PhD) levels. Our research focusses on the dissemination of the genetic basis of traits which are relevant in order to achieve a sustainable agri- and horticulture. We conduct this research often in partnership with breeding companies, local, regional and state governments.

We will recruit for the vacancy ourselves, so no employment agencies please. However, sharing in your network is appreciated.

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