PhDs on legal aspects of Floating Offshore Wind Energy – project ‘HybridLabs’ (2.0 FTE)

University of Groningen
August 16, 2024
Offerd Salary:€ 2,770
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Contract Type:Other
Working Time:Full time
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PhDs on legal aspects of Floating Offshore Wind Energy – project

‘HybridLabs' (2.0 FTE) (V24.0358)

Job description

A large consortium of research universities and companies is going to work on the development of innovative floating offshore wind technologies in the Netherlands and Ireland, under the umbrella of the project ‘HybridLabs'. Next to developing both digital models and physical labs for floating offshore wind, there is also a work package on societal implementation of these innovative technologies, which addresses ecological impact, training of the workforce and supply chain readiness, as well as the legal framework for the implementation of these technologies. The two PhD researchers will contribute to this work package.

Societal Challenge Offshore wind is crucial to attain the target of a net-zero energy sector. The worldwide installed capacity of offshore wind energy needs to reach 359GW by 2030 and 1,833GW by 2050 (DNV, 2022), which represents a 30-fold increase compared to the current situation. Also, The Netherlands set the goal of deploying 150GW of offshore wind power in the North Sea alone, with 70GW targeted for the Dutch part (Klimaatakkoord, 2019). As a comparison, the current installed capacity of offshore wind in the Dutch North Sea is about 3GW. Achieving these targets – in these timeframes – requires radical innovations.

With 60-80% of the wind resources being located in deep waters, innovative designs such as floating offshore wind technologies will have to be developed. The models and testing facilities, as well as the legal frameworks, are often not adjusted for these technologies. Moreover, linking the energy transition to other major societal challenges such as the food transition and ecological challenges, integrated solutions are required.

In HybridLabs, a Dutch Scientific Organisation (NWO)-funded project, these challenges are approached from various perspectives. The University of Groningen, Groningen Centre of Energy Law and Sustainability is involved in the legal and regulatory research for this project.

The two PhD candidates will be integrated in the Groningen Centre of Energy Law and Sustainability (GCELS). GCELS brings together expertise from all branches of law within the Faculty of Law of the University of Groningen to develop cutting-edge research and educational programmes relevant for the energy transition. Its research covers the entire energy chain as well the transitions necessary to move towards a more sustainable society. This includes all legislation and regulation applying to the production, transport, storage and supply of energy, the promotion of renewable energy sources and energy efficiency, the need to secure energy supply, as well as climate action and environmental protection.

Organisation The University of Groningen is a research university with a global outlook, deeply rooted in Groningen, City of Talent. Quality has had top priority for four hundred years, and with success: the University is currently in or around the top 100 on several influential ranking lists.

The Faculty of Law (https: // www. is building on a longstanding tradition of four centuries of quality legal research. It is an ambitious top-ranking faculty of law with both high-quality education and research, with a strong international orientation, firmly rooted in the North of The Netherlands. The faculty creates and shares knowledge through outstanding education and research, benefitting society. With more than 4000 students and 350 staff the faculty is heavily involved in educating students, both Dutch and international. The faculty is a modern, broad and international institution, educating students to become forward-looking, articulate and independent lawyers.


We expect the candidate to have

  • Completed or be close to completing a Master's degree in law.
  • Ability to analyse and apply the relevant international, European and national regulatory framework of energy law, in connection with other environmental and social regulatory and policy aspects.
  • Independence and availability to travel and settle in the countries of the universities participating in the project and to carry out international academic activities.
  • Ability to understand and communicate in the language(s) relevant to the proposed doctoral research project. The working language of the project is English, and due to the research on Dutch Law, for one candidate proficiency in Dutch is also required.
  • Eagerness to publish international articles and write a dissertation.
  • Enthusiasm to work in an interdisciplinary research team.
  • Demonstrable competences as conceptual capacity, presenting, monitoring, planning and organizing.
  • Good social and communication skills.
  • Excellent command of English and academic writing skills.
  • Organisation Conditions of employment

    We offer you, following the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities:

  • A salary of € 2,770 gross per month in the first year, up to a maximum of € 3,539 gross per month in the fourth and final year for a full-time working week. Additional (family) allowances can be applicable depending on specific circumstances, in accordance with Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions (MSCA) conditions.
  • A holiday allowance of 8% gross annual income and an 8.3% year-end bonus.
  • A full-time position (1.0 FTE) for four years; first, you will get a temporary position of eighteen months with the option of renewal for another thirty months; prolongation of the contract is contingent on sufficient progress to indicate that successful completion of the PhD thesis within the contract period is to be expected. A PhD training programme is part of the agreement and you will be enrolled in the Graduate School of the Faculty of Law.
  • Envisaged starting date: 1 January 2025

    All PhD students participate in the Groningen Graduate School of Law (GGSL - https: // www. The GGSL organizes the education of research master students and PhD students in the Faculty of Law. The inspiring and stimulating research environment is evidenced by the last external research audit in 2022 that judged research of the faculty of outstanding quality and praised the GGSL for the way in which PhD students are supported and supervised from the start till the very end of the PhD. Through the graduate school, the PhD candidates will be invited to several trainings and courses that are relevant for the candidates' projects.


    The application should include:

  • A cover letter explaining your motivation for the position.
  • CV.
  • The names and contact details of two referees and an indication of whether we can contact them at this stage.
  • Overview of grades.
  • A writing sample (e.g. Master thesis or other written work).
  • Candidates admitted to the Interview stage will be required to submit a three- page research proposal which includes a specification of the research question(s) you would like to answer in this context and approach and methodologies you would use. You will give a short presentation on this at the beginning of the interview.

    Only complete applications submitted by the deadline will be taken into consideration.

    You can submit your application until 15 August 11:59pm / before 16 August 2024 Dutch local time (CET) by means of the application form (click on "Apply" below on the advertisement on the university website).

    The interviews for the position are scheduled in the first week of September.

    The University of Groningen strives to be a university in which students and staff are respected and feel at home, regardless of differences in background, experiences, perspectives, and identities. We believe that working on our core values of inclusion and equality are a joint responsibility and we are constructively working on creating a socially safe environment. Diversity among students and staff members enriches academic debate and contributes to the quality of our teaching and research. We therefore invite applicants from underrepresented groups in particular to apply. For more information, see also our diversity policy webpage: https: // www. strategy/diversity-and-inclusion/

    Our selection procedure follows the guidelines of the Recruitment code (NVP): https: // www. and European Commission's European Code of Conduct for recruitment of researchers: https: //

    We provide career services for partners of new faculty members moving to Groningen.

    Unsolicited marketing is not appreciated.


    For information you can contact:

  • Dr Ceciel Nieuwenhout, Assistant Professor of Energy law, c.t.nieuwenhout
  • Please do not use the e-mail address(es) above for applications.

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