Assistant Professor, The spatial transformation of food systems


University of Twente


Saturday, January 5, 2019

Start Date

Friday, March 1, 2019


The Tenure Track position addresses the challenge of modelling, measuring and monitoring the resilience of food systems, especially in developing countries. There is a need to transform food systems to make them more sustainable and resilient to slow onset crises. Assessing how these systems can adapt to meet growing and diversifying urban demand is key to increasing sustainable production and building resilience to shocks. This requires innovation in measuring and monitoring their current resilience and modelling their future resilience. The long term goal is to utilise spatial information science to improve the ground-breaking capacity of people and systems in the context of food security.

We are looking for excellent candidates with the potential for significant scientific and societal impact by developing new methods to address the following challenges:

  • How can state-of-the-art technologies be used to model, measure, and monitor the resilience of food systems?
  • How should resilience measures from engineering, environmental and socio-technological domains be adapted and expanded to fit these food systems?
  • How does resilience in food systems propagate across scales over time in multi-level systems?

Addressing any of these challenges will require innovative applied remote sensing and spatial analysis, coupled with techniques such as: optimisation and simulation modelling; machine learning; or agent based modelling.

You will be based in the Natural Resources Department (NRS) of ITC. You will form collaborations with other members of the DeSIRE programme and other research units where building resilience is a long-term objective.

For specific information about ITC’s Tenure Track policy see:


  • You possess a PhD in fields like: Geography, Agriculture, Ecology, Resilience Engineering, Environmental Sciences, Geo-informatics, Computer Science or Data Science with relevant expertise in geo-information and/or remote sensing.
  • You have proven scientific creativity combined with a publishing record of acknowledged quality and a strong interest in developing innovative solutions for the measurement, monitoring and modelling of resilience in food systems in developing countries.
  • You can demonstrate an active and reciprocal working approach that fits both ITC and the DeSIRE programme.
  • Preferably you have proven didactic skills, have supervised MSc/PhD students, have experience in teaching (University Teacher Qualification certificate ‘BKO’ or equivalent), an affinity with a multi-cultural, post-graduate education environments, and experience in international consulting and advising co-operation.
  • You should be willing to undertake international travel.
  • You have an excellent command of English. Knowledge of, or willingness to learn Dutch is an advantage.


Additional information regarding the position can be obtained from Prof. Dr. A.D. Nelson (e-mail: You are also invited to visit our homepage.

Please submit your application before 5 January 2019 (choose “apply now” below). Your application has to include (i) a motivation letter clearly stating how you meet the selection criteria and also outlining your research and teaching interests, (ii) a detailed CV with references and (iii) a two-page statement on your personal vision on research, education and capacity development in relation to ITC, DeSIRE and the position. Applications that do not include all three will not be considered.

A public guest lecture to the ITC-staff will be part of the selection. A development assessment could be part of the selection also. Because of our diversity values we do particularly support women to apply.

Contact Name

Prof. Dr. A.D. Nelson

Contact Email