Building and promoting Excellence in Life Sciences in Europe
Building and promoting Excellence in Life Sciences in Europe

Junior or Senior Professor & Research Leader in microbiology

About the Center 

The VIB-KU Leuven Center for Microbiology is part of the VIB life sciences institute and is embedded within the University of Leuven (KU Leuven). The aim of the Center is to combine leading basic microbiology and systems biology research with top technology transfer activities.  

The current research focuses on microbes as a model to study their general biology, cellular physiology, ecology and evolution, including themes like genetic and epigenetic inheritance, cellular sensing and signaling, biofilms and the intestinal ecosystem. Apart from being a leader in basic research, the Center is also an important hub for translational research, with emphasis on the beer, wine, bakery, biofuels, and green chemicals industries, as well as human medicine (antifungals, microbiome analysis, …). 

The Center is located in Leuven, 10 miles from Brussels, with frequent direct train connections to Brussels airport.

We are currently interested in recruiting 1 group leader / research professor m/f specialized in any microbiology-related field; including but not limited to synthetic microbiology, systems microbiology, microbiomes, microbial pathogens, virology, bacteriology, antibiotics, computational (micro)biology and applied microbiology. We are particularly interested in candidates who have a keen interest in combining basic science with tech transfer.

The successful candidates will be appointed as VIB-KU Leuven group leader and as research professor (tenure-track or tenure, depending on level of experience) at the KU Leuven, one of the oldest and most prominent universities in Europe. The successful candidates are expected to apply for additional research funding, including an ERC grant and/or an FWO Odysseus grant.

Your challenge

Setting up a forefront research group in basic and applied microbiology within the newly established center, publishing in high impact journals and translating novel insights into valorization strategies that contribute to better diagnosis and treatment.


We are looking for candidates who have:

  • a PhD  
  • At least 2 years of experience as a postdoctoral researcher or as a junior faculty member
  • published at least 5 papers in leading journals of the field (typically IF>10)
  • a successful track record in fund raising is a plus but not required for junior candidates
  • an ongoing ERC grant or filed ERC application is a plus but not required
  • teaching experience at an academic level is a plus but not required for junior candidates

We offer

  • a position in a stimulating and international research environment with excellent peers
  • a generous start-up fund of 1 to 1.5 million euros
  • state-of-the-art laboratory space and access to VIB Core Facilities
  • a competitive salary
  • support in terms of finance, HR, tech transfer
  • support in applying for ERC and/or FWO Odysseus grants
  • Depending on your record and qualifications, you will be appointed to or tenured in one of the grades of the senior academic staff: assistant professor, associate professor, professor or full professor

How to apply? 

Candidates are expected to receive a double appointment (as group leader at VIB and as research professor at KU Leuven).  Candidates are therefore requested to apply through the VIB (above apply button) and the KU Leuven system

To upload to your application:

  • a list of your 5 most important achievements in the past 5 years (specific publications, patents, research, valorization or outreach initiatives, …)
  • a two- page statement of your research interests and research goals, including 2-3 main research topics for the coming 5 years.
  • full CV with list of publications
  • contact details of 3 referees

Deadline to apply: March 31, 2019.

For more information please contact :

Kevin Verstrepen, Science director Center for Microbiology

Prof.dr. Joris Winderickx, chair of the Biology Department

Host Institute