PhD (4 year) position quantum chemical design of organic reactions

Research / Academic
We are excited to invite applications for a fully-funded, four-year PhD position in the Theoretical Chemistry department at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. The research project draws expertise from a variety of fields including theoretical chemistry, artificial intelligence, and organic chemistry and aims to streamline the rational-design of elaborate chemical syntheses and development of novel synthetic methodologies. The PhD candidate will help realize the concept of “Theory-Driven Organic Synthesis” and principally focus on chemical transformations that involve, among others, C-H functionalization, C–C bond formation, and electrocyclic reactions. Successful development of predictive models will result in the actual “theory-driven design” of experiments carried out by our collaborators in our network.


  • A completed MSc degree in Chemistry or related field
  • Expertise in theoretical, computational chemistry, and chemical bonding
  • Expertise with programming skills in Python
  • Experience with artificial intelligence (machine learning, neural networks, etc)
  • Interest in organic chemistry, (retro)synthesis, and methodology development
  • Very good writing skills and command of the English Language (mandatory)
  • Good communication skills and ability to work in an interdisciplinary team

Salary Benefits:

A challenging position in a socially involved organization. The salary will be in accordance with university regulations for academic personnel and amounts €2,325 (PhD) per month during the first year and increases to €2,972 (PhD) per month during the fourth year, based on a full-time employment. The job profile: is based on the university job ranking system and is vacant for at least 1 FTE.

The appointment will initially be for 1 year. After a satisfactory evaluation of the initial appointment, the contract will be extended for a duration of 4 years. Additionally, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam offers excellent fringe benefits and various schemes and regulations to promote a good work/life balance, such as:
  • a maximum of 41 days of annual leave based on full-time employment
  • 8% holiday allowance and 8.3% end-of-year bonus
  • contribution to commuting expenses
  • good paid parental leave scheme
  • child daycare facilities available on campus
  • a wide range of sports facilities which staff may use at a modest charge

Work Hours:

38 - 40 hours per week


De Boelelaan 1105