EMPOWER is a doctoral programme co-funded by the European Commission through a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action (MSCA) (Co-funding of regional, national and international programmes (COFUND).
EMPOWER is an innovative doctoral training programme aiming to encourage the entrepreneurship in research. The objective is to create a highly demanded type of professional in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics), with the skillset to operate between academic chairs, established knowledge-intensive companies, start-ups, public authorities and the general public, to develop and realize solutions for the challenges of the 21st century in the field of water. The resulting next-generation PhD will be a scientific entrepreneur that fosters the commercialization of scientific discoveries, generates a clear communication channel between industry and university and creates pathways for their coexistence.
Overall, the doctoral training programme consists of four main, interconnected parts, which are dedicated to developing different skills: research, multidisciplinary expertise, entrepreneurship and personal development. In particular, Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) enrolling in EMPOWER are asked to integrate their PhD path with an integrated business- oriented training (MBA), which allows for a dual degree. This dual training is fundamental to prepare STEM PhD students for careers in entrepreneurship. The MBA comprises a business secondment, related to the research project of the ESR, at one industry/company.
To be eligible, at the deadline of the call, the candidate must fulfil the following mandatory criteria, according to the early-stage and mobility MSCA criteria:
- Hold an MSc degree in the discipline associated with the research topic.
- The candidate’s full-time equivalent research experience must be less than four years, measured from the date when the candidate obtained the degree entitling them to embark on a doctorate, either in the country in which the degree was obtained or in the country in which the candidate is recruited, even if a doctorate was never started or envisaged.
- The candidate may not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in the Netherlands for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately before the deadline of the call. Time spent as part of a procedure for obtaining refugee status under the Geneva Convention, compulsory national service and/or short stays such as holidays are not taken into account.
- The candidate must not hold a doctoral degree.
- PhD project 1: Optimisation of manure processing: towards more sustainable application of manure-based fertilizers.
- PhD project 2: Stable polyelectrolyte multilayer based membranes for water treatment under harsh conditionsStable polyelectrolyte multilayer based membranes for water treatment under harsh conditions
- PhD project 3: Enhancing the local water cycle via evaporation for a sustainable water supply
- PhD project 4: Sensing strategies for real-time, early warning monitoring of biofilm formation parameters in drinking water distribution systems
- PhD project 5: Beyond chlorine: alternative sustainable compounds to remove biofilms in drinking water environments
- PhD project 6: High recovery and chemical-free desalination using advanced electrodialysis schemes
- PhD project 7: Energy-efficient electrochemical phosphate recovery (EPR) – optimisation and upscaling
- PhD project 8: Towards a circular sulphur economy
- PhD project 9: Production of PHA from municipal primary sludge VFAs in support of upscaling of PHA production from municipal surplus activated sludge
- PhD project 10: Steering protein functionality by smart dehydration
- PhD project 11: Untapping the energetic potential of grey water: microbiological safety and downstream re-utilization routes
- PhD project 12: Optics-based distributed sensing for the management of groundwater quality
- PhD project 13: Inline electronic leak detection in water distribution systems
- PhD project 14: EPS-based solutions to increase soil structure and resilience to drought
The application documents have to be sent exclusively via the web-based application form on the specific webpage of the research project of choice.
Deadline: 29 October 2021