Postdoc Climate resilience action research on urban living labs

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Sea level rise, soil subsidence, extreme rainfall and drought: climate change induces new challenges and risks for real estate and infrastructure, especially in low lying urbanized deltas, such as the Netherlands. Urbanized deltas are vulnerable to risks for flooding, excessive heat and rainfall, and damage to wooden pile foundations and (underground) infrastructure.

While people’s homes, communities, and livelihoods are at stake, real estate climate risks also stand to destabilize markets and society at large. Real estate and infrastructure investment is an important strategy for households, governments, and financial institutions to create wealth and economic security. How, when, and where we manage these risks are crucial if we are to see an equitable and effective climate transition.

The RED&BLUE research consortium is committed to finding scientific and practical solutions to mitigate climate risks and to keep urban deltas liveable and prosperous. As such, scientific research is interwoven with two urban living labs which build on use cases of the stakeholders. The living labs are Greater Rotterdam and Greater Amsterdam.

Two postdoc positions are available, one for each living lab, for the scientific substantiation of the action research in setting up, coordinating and monitoring the living labs. The living labs are led by the Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Metropolitan Solutions (AMS) and the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences (RUAS).

The 2 postdocs will be appointed at TU Delft but will have their daily workplace at AMS and RUAS, respectively, to support the research leaders at these institutes in organising productive interactions between the city-teams, the selected project and their stakeholders, and the RED&BLUE research team. This approach guarantees that the case studies in the Living Labs are well connected to the research objectives and vice versa. One day a week the post docs will meet at TU Delft with the RED&BLUE team.


  1. Identify and understand the challenges, barriers and enablers for the implementation of integrated real estate and infrastructure climate risk management strategies in urban delta areas, using living labs as both a study area and research approach.

  2. Develop co-creative approaches for the local agenda-setting, development and implementation and integration of equitable and just real estate and infrastructure climate risk management strategies.

  3. Facilitate the testing and validation of models, methods, approaches, strategies, tools and solutions developed in the scientific work packages of the RED&BLUE research in a real-world setting.

  4. Facilitate two-way exchange between scientific partners and living lab stakeholders, ensuring that the perspectives and priorities of the latter are reflected in the research agenda

  5. Identify conditions and requirements for the development and implementation of inclusive, equitable and just urban outcomes.

This position is part of Work Package 6 of the Real Estate Development & Building in Low Urban Environments (RED&BLUE) research initiative, a major new program funded by the Dutch Research Council. This initiative aims to develop transdisciplinary knowledge on climate resilient real estate and infrastructure development. More information can be found at: RED&BLUE Climate.

As a member of the RED&BLUE, you will lead high impact research on a pressing societal topic relevant within the Netherlands and beyond. Your research will enable you to actively collaborate with other researchers and societal partners, providing you with exceptional mentorship, personal development, and networking opportunities.


  • PhD degree, or equivalent, in Urban Studies (e.g. Planning, Geography, Built Environment Engineering), Management Studies, (Management of) Built Environment Engineering / Civil Engineering, or a related discipline.

  • Demonstrated interest in transdisciplinary research and impact, with a proven capacity to approach governance-related challenges from different perspectives, and with regard for matters of equity and inclusion.

  • Excellent spoken and written English, as required for scientific publishing. If your native language is not English and you do not hold a degree from an institution in which English is the language of instruction, you must submit proof of English proficiency from either TOEFL (minimum total score of 100) or IELTS (minimum total score of 7.0).

  • A good command of Dutch, passively and actively, is a prerequisite, considering the real-world urban case study dimension of the research in which you will need to communicate with local stakeholders in Dutch.

  • Excellent communication skills, including a willingness and ability to switch between operational and managerial levels and to communicate between the various scientific disciplines that are part of this research.

  • A creative and curious mindset, courageous to take initiative or think outside of the box.

  • Flexible with regards to off-site and on-site research activities.

  • Results-oriented with excellent analytical thinking and interest in disseminating results through both academic and non-academic means.

Conditions of employment

Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities. The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, a discount on health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged.

For international applicants we offer the Coming to Delft Service and Partner Career Advice to assist you with your relocation. An International Children's Centre offers childcare and there is an international primary school.

TU Delft (Delft University of Technology)

Delft University of Technology is built on strong foundations. As creators of the world-famous Dutch waterworks and pioneers in biotech, TU Delft is a top international university combining science, engineering and design. It delivers world class results in education, research and innovation to address challenges in the areas of energy, climate, mobility, health and digital society. For generations, our engineers have proven to be entrepreneurial problem-solvers, both in business and in a social context.

At TU Delft we embrace diversity as one of our core values and we actively engage to be a university where you feel at home and can flourish. We value different perspectives and qualities. We believe this makes our work more innovative, the TU Delft community more vibrant and the world more just. Together, we imagine, invent and create solutions using technology to have a positive impact on a global scale. That is why we invite you to apply. Your application will receive fair consideration.

Challenge. Change. Impact!

Faculty Architecture & the Built Environment

The Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment has a leading role in education and research worldwide. The driving force behind the faculty’s success is its robust research profile combined with the energy and creativity of its student body and academic community. It is buzzing with energy from early in the morning until late at night, with four thousand people studying, working, designing, conducting research and acquiring and disseminating knowledge. Our faculty has a strong focus on 'design-oriented research’, which has given it a top position in world rankings. Staff and students are working to improve the built environment with the help of a broad set of disciplines, including architectural design, urban planning, building technology, social sciences, process management, and geo-information science. The faculty works closely with other faculties, universities, private parties, and the public sector, and has an extensive network in the Netherlands as well as internationally.

Click here to go to the website of the Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment.

Additional information

For information about this vacancy, please contact dr. Zac Taylor, e-mail:

For more information about the application procedure, please contact Caro Coemans, HR Advisor, e-mail: The position will remain open until Augustus 15, 2022 (local Dutch time: UTC time + 2hrs.). You must apply via the "Apply now" button. Application via e-mail will not be processed.

Successfully-shortlisted applicants will be invited to a first interview between August 22 and Sept. 3, 2022.

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