Professor in Health Communication

Katholieke Universiteit Leuven


January 24, 2022


Professor in Health Communication

(ref. ZAP-2021-108)

Last modification : Friday, December 24, 2021

At the Department of Public Health and Primary Care of KU Leuven, a full-time academic position is vacant in the domain of health communication. Within the Biomedical Sciences Group at KU Leuven, the Department of Public Health and Primary Care conducts research in societal aspects of healthcare. Its members include experts in disease prevention, health protection, health promotion, quality assurance, health care policy, bioethics, health law, health economics, health communication, biostatistics, epidemiology, geriatrics and gerontology, nursing and midwifery, emergency medicine and general practice medicine. Members of the Department conduct interdisciplinary research with a major impact at a national and international level. They also provide high- quality education in various educational areas. In addition, they provide healthcare professionals and institutions with insights, concepts and techniques that enable them to respond optimally to the needs and expectations of the patient and society in the area of healthcare. Moreover, they seek to improve collaboration with clinical medicine and research, and they are closely involved in national and international partnerships. The Department of Public Health and Primary Care offers a dynamic research context that stimulates interdisciplinary collaboration.

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Duties Research
  • You are an ambitious, internationally oriented researcher in the field of health communication. Your research focuses on communication between patients and healthcare providers (shared decision-making), patient participation (patient and public involvement), digital (health) literacy and strengthening the role and position of the patient in healthcare. You conduct research into communication processes within various contexts, such as primary care (general practice, dentists, prevention services), specialist care, public health or the welfare sector.
  • You will develop a research program in health communication, publish in international journals, obtain research funding, and develop collaborations within and outside the department, both on a national and international level.
  • You strive for excellence in your research and thus contribute to the reputation of KU Leuven and the Department of Public Health and Primary Care.
  • Education
  • You will fulfill a teaching assignment within the Faculty of Medicine of the KU Leuven. You have a managerial, coordinating and inspiring role in the development of the communication line within various curricula.
  • You teach in various basic training programs (e.g. medicine, dentistry) and Advanced Master's programs (e.g. specialist medicine, general practice).
  • You develop experience-based learning and make use of innovations in education.
  • You coach and supervise medical experts who, as a colleague trainer, supervise courses on communication.
  • You supervise Master's theses, Advanced Master's theses and Doctoral theses.
  • Your education meets the requirements set for academic programs in terms of level, orientation and academic focus and is in line with the educational concept of KU Leuven. Commitment to the quality of the program as a whole is self-evident.
  • Service
  • You provide scientific service activities related to health communication.
  • You will eventually take on policy responsibilities within KU Leuven and contribute to the national and international visibility of the department.
  • You develop a network of contacts within the Flemish healthcare landscape that provide added value in the field of research and/or education.
  • Profile
  • Candidates should preferably hold a basic education in human sciences and a doctoral degree.
  • Candidates are expected to have built up significant and demonstrable research experience in one or more themes within the domain of health communication. Research quality should be evidenced by recent publications in international journals and experience in writing project applications. International research experience is a plus.
  • You have strong didactic skills and preferably demonstrable teaching experience. Your communication and organizational skills are well developed and you are a team player.
  • Your spoken and written English is excellent. The administrative language of KU Leuven is Dutch. Given the Dutch-language teaching assignment, a very good knowledge of Dutch is a requirement. If you are not sufficiently proficient in Dutch at the time of recruitment, KU Leuven provides training courses that must allow you to participate in board meetings. Before teaching courses in Dutch or English, you will be given the opportunity to learn Dutch, respectively English, to the required standard (CEFR level C1).
  • Offer
  • We offer a full-time academic appointment in an intellectually challenging environment. KU Leuven is a research-intensive, internationally oriented university that carries out both fundamental and applied scientific research. It has a strong inter- and multidisciplinary focus and strives for international excellence. To this end, it actively collaborates with its research partners at home and abroad. KU Leuven offers her students an academic education based on high-level scientific research.
  • You will work in Leuven, a historic yet dynamic and lively city in the center of Belgium, twenty minutes from Brussels, the capital of the European Union, and less than two hours from Paris, London and Amsterdam.
  • Depending on your file and qualifications, you will be appointed to one of the ranks of independent academic staff: lecturer, associate professor, professor or full professor. In principle, junior researchers are appointed as tenure track lecturers for a period of 5 years. Afterwards, in the event of a positive evaluation, they are permanently appointed as senior lecturers.
  • External postdoctoral fellows may be asked to end their fellowship first.
  • KU Leuven is well set to welcome foreign professors and their family and provides practical support with regard to immigration & administration, housing, childcare, learning Dutch, partner career coaching, …
  • To facilitate scientific onboarding and accelerate research in the first phase a starting grant of 100.000 euro is offered to new professors without substantial other funding, appointed for at least 50%."
  • Interested?

    For more information please contact Prof. dr. Pascal Borry, tel.: +32 16 37 95 17, mail: problems with online applying, please contact

    KU Leuven places great importance on research integrity and ethical conduct and will therefore ask you to sign an integrity statement upon appointment.

    KU Leuven seeks to foster an environment where all talents can flourish, regardless of gender, age, cultural background, nationality or impairments. If you have any questions relating to accessibility or support, please contact us at