Project Manager Plant Phenotyping


The VIB-UGent Center for Plant Systems Biology (PSB) in Ghent, Belgium, is a world-leading institute in plant sciences. PSB has invested significantly in the development and operation of automated, high-throughput plant phenotyping systems to support plant research within the institute and in collaboration with external partners (plant_phenotyping). PSB is also increasingly engaging in field phenotyping for translational research. At the same time, across Europe, important efforts are continuously devoted to the improvement of plant phenotyping methods, tools and infrastructure, and to enable access to established facilities for academic, public and private sector users (EPPN). Recently, Belgium has made the commitment to provide support for the establishment of a pan-European research infrastructure for plant phenotyping (EMPHASIS). In the frame of the EU-project (EMPHASIS-PREP) that will address the preparatory phase for the establishment of EMPHASIS, and in which VIB is a core group partner, we are looking for a highly motivated, committed and skilled project manager. The tasks of the project manager are very diverse as EMPHASIS‐PREP addresses all aspects relevant to the synergistic operation of the distributed phenotyping infrastructure, including the development of a long-term operational strategy. This will require close interaction between all phenotyping infrastructures and all relevant stakeholders across Europe. It is important to realize that the project manager will not directly participate in research that will lead to publications in peer-reviewed scientific journals. 


  • mapping and gap analysis within the European plant phenotyping landscape
  • development of an integrated strategy/perspective on EMPHASIS
  • close interaction with the different stakeholders, including scientists involved in phenotyping, and academic and industrial users of plant phenotyping facilities
  • close interaction with funding agencies and government representatives
  • reporting on the project's progress and deliverables
  • promotion of the project on its website and on social media


  • preferably a degree in natural sciences, plant biology, agronomy or a related subject, ideally with PhD or clearly demonstrated experience 
  • experience in the scientific and administrative management of research projects is highly recommended; experience in the management of EU-funded projects is considered advantageous
  • ability to think and act within a strategic framework, more business than science-related 
  • excellent, demonstrated skills in communication and organisation, and ability to work in an interdisciplinary, international context, within teams across institutions
  • punctual and efficient, both in respect to deadlines, and in the writing of reports and communication documents
  • excellent spoken and written English language skills; the ability to communicate in other European languages, such as Dutch or French, is considered advantageous
  • proficiency in the use of Microsoft office and diverse social media; experience in web design as well as acquaintance with e-infrastructure is considered advantageous
  • willingness to travel frequently within Europe

We offer

  • fulltime employment for an initial period of 6 months; upon satisfactory evaluation, the duration will be extended up to the end of 2020
  • excellent facilities within a dynamic, international scientific environment with great opportunities for the further development of professional skills and growth towards a position with key responsibilities
  • a start date to be convened, but preferably not later than June 2017

How to apply?

​If you are interested, please apply online. Applications by email will not be considered. The position will remain open until a suitable candidate has been identified.

Additional requirements:

  • please attach a full motivation letter
  • your CV should include diplomas & certificates
  • please make sure to include the full contact details of at least two relevant references, one of which should be your PhD promoter or supervisor (if applicable)

Creation date:

10 February 2017




VIB Center for Plant Systems Biology,



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