Harro Bouwmeester

Assistant professor Microbial genomics

Website University of Amsterdam, Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences

Microbiome research is becoming increasingly important in our institute. We study the host-microbiome interaction in different types of biological systems (plants, humans, nematodes). The use of big data is an important aspect of this work. This means that we work with metagenomics, metabolomics and other types of omics data, and integrate these to understand our biological systems. This requires high-level understanding of tools for metagenome analysis, data analysis and systems biology modeling.

You will be embedded the Biosystems Data Analysis group which is part of the Cell & Systems Biology cluster of the Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences (SILS) in the Faculty of Science at the University of Amsterdam. This group is specialized in the analysis of these types of data and works on this together with biological groups within SILS, the AUMC and ACTA.

We aim to recruit someone who is willing to devote 50% of their time to teaching and 50% to research. You will be teaching subjects related to your research line, but you are also expected to contribute to teaching on a broader range of subjects in the Biology and Biomedical Sciences programs (BSc and MSc level). In time, you should also be able to take on smaller or larger management roles in education.

We look forward to welcoming a new colleague with original ideas and a healthy research ambition that will setup a new research line on functional microbial genomics of host-microbe interactions, with special emphasis on the analysis of microbiome functionality from metagenomics data in different host-microbiome systems.

You are expected to:

  • be active in teaching (and the development of education) in the BSc and MSc programs of the Biomedical Sciences and Systems Biology in the Faculty of Science;
  • supervise BSc and MSc students for individual assignments (including research internships, literature reviews, etc.);
  • be active in your research line, resulting in scientific publications in peer-reviewed journals;
  • be active in the attraction of external funding;
  • contribute to collaborations within FNWI and with other institutes and/or companies, including our biomedical partner institutes in Amsterdam (Amsterdam UMC, ACTA).

What do we require?

  • A PhD in bioinformatics of functional microbial (meta-) genomics (or an adjacent area);
  • expertise in this area of research, reflected by (among others) your publication record;
  • a broad interest in life sciences research beyond the boundaries of your own discipline;
  • affinity for both research and teaching;
  • enthusiasm for and dedication to teaching at the undergraduate and graduate levels;
  • experience with microbiome analysis and affinity for systems biology;
  • willingness to contribute to attracting external funding;
  • willingness to foster collaborations with other academic groups, institutes and/or industry;
  • willingness to contribute to valorization and outreach activities;
  • fluency and excellent communication in English, both written and spoken;
  • fluency in Dutch is strongly preferred, given your contributions to teaching in the BSc program.

Our ideal candidate has:

  • at least 2 years of postdoc experience, preferably internationally;
  • a prior funding record appropriate for their career stage.

If you are interested but have any hesitation as to whether you would be a fit for this position, please contact prof. Age K. Smilde.

In this position, you will be able to apply for grants and act as daily supervisor for PhD students. Our goal is to recruit someone who will strengthen our team by contributing their skills and expertise to our existing research program in order to achieve common results. Please note that this position does not necessarily require an extensive prior teaching record, although this will be beneficial. Ideally, you have at least some teaching experience (including student supervision) to demonstrate your competence in this area. Still, enthusiasm for and affinity with teaching and education are more important than experience at this point. Within the Faculty of Science, newly appointed assistant professors follow a didactic training trajectory, which upon completion results in a qualification for academic teaching (basiskwalificatie onderwijs, BKO) within two years. SILS expects its staff to acquire sufficient fluency in the Dutch language within three years of the start of the employment contract.

Our offer:
Initially a temporary contract for 38 hours a week, preferably starting on 1 March 2021 for the duration of 2 years. A permanent contract follows if we assess your performance positive.

The salary, depending on relevant experience before the beginning of the employment contract, will be €3,746 to €5,127 (scale 11) gross per month, based on a full-time contract of 38 hours a week. This is exclusive 8 % holiday allowance and 8.3% end-of-year bonus. A favourable tax agreement, the ‘30% ruling’, may apply to non-Dutch applicants. The Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities is applicable.

The Faculty of Science has a student body of around 7,000, as well as 1,600 members of staff working in education, research or support services. Researchers and students at the Faculty of Science are fascinated by every aspect of how the world works, be it elementary particles, the birth of the universe or the functioning of the brain. The Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences (SILS) is one of the Faculty of Science’s largest institutes. Its approximately 240 scientists and staff members work in 16 research groups that perform excellent research centered around four themes: Cell & Systems Biology, Microbiology, Neurosciences and Green Life Sciences.

Do you have questions about this vacancy? Or do you want to know more about our organisation? Please contact:

prof. Age Smilde, professor Biosystems Data Analysis
T: +31 (0)20 525 5062


To apply for this job email your details to a.k.s.smilde@uva.nl