Lab Manager - Évora

About Us: 

Associação Fraunhofer Portugal Research (Fraunhofer Portugal) is a private non-profit association that promotes and undertakes applied research of direct utility to private and public enterprises and of wide benefit to society. To this end, different Fraunhofer research centers with individual areas of expertise are operated under the roof of Fraunhofer Portugal. A new center dedicated to “Smart Agriculture and Water Management” is currently being established which originates from a partnership between the Fraunhofer Society (Fraunhofer Gesellschaft), Fraunhofer Portugal, the Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT) of Portugal, the Universidade de Évora and the Universidade de Trás-os-Montes e Alto Douro in Vila Real.

The partners felt a need for the establishment of an institution for applied research in this specific field of science and technology as global agriculture is facing severe challenges due to growing population and climate change. New high tech approaches are needed to efficiently address e.g. the security of supply in terms of quantity and quality of food, the sustainability and environmental compatibility of farming, and the competitiveness of European farmers. Water availability is an important issue in this context which is closely connected to waste water treatment and water recycling in all parts of society. The main goal of this Fraunhofer center is therefore the development and application of new process technologies on the basis of a comprehensive data analysis and modelling to close regional loops of nutrients, water and energy. Process technologies will include but are not limited to membrane technology, general process engineering, sensors and sensor grids and energy systems. To this end, research activities will be pursued in close cooperation with industrial partners in the following areas:

- Development, demonstration and application of process technologies, especially regarding separation processes with e.g. membrane technology, sensor technology as well as energy, to facilitate efficiency in agriculture, forestry and water management;

- Integration of digitalization and development of highly automated, partially self-regulating systems to meet the requirements of “smart agriculture” and “smart water management”, and their demonstration with prototypes and field experiments;

- Process development and application in line with concepts of environmental sustainability, taking into account ecosystem preservation and services, and a circular economy approach.

In order to establish and expand its project competences, Fraunhofer Portugal is now looking for applications from candidates interested in the particular fields addressed by the new center, who are capable of providing excellent qualifications and skills within the requirements described below.


Job Title: Lab Manager

Job Ref: FhP_Jobs_2021_05

Job Type: The successful candidate will be contracted as senior scientist under a term employment contract.

Job Salary: In accordance with work experience and qualification of the candidate.

Job Location: Campus of Mitra, Évora, Portugal.


Job Description and Responsibilities:

Among others, the new Fraunhofer center will operate laboratories and pilot plant stations for water treatment, for the recovery of nutrients and energy from e.g. manure and fermentation products, or the refinement of products such as wine, oil, or milk. Enabling technologies for these aims are organic and inorganic membranes for separation approaches, electrochemical treatment methods and advanced oxidation processes. Also, efficient biomass conversion shall be promoted by the center in order to create adjusted solutions for Portuguese agriculture in partnership with innovative Portuguese companies. One position of manager for the laboratory on the Campus of Mitra / Évora is announced here. The responsibilities of the successful candidate include:

- Planning and equipping the laboratories in close cooperation with specialists from the Fraunhofer Institute for Ceramic Technologies and Systems IKTS in Germany;

- Organizing and leading the initial research team at the respective center branch;

- Managing of applied research projects in the field of smart agriculture and water management in close cooperation with local industry;

- Design and acquisition of publicly funded national and international research projects;

- Close scientific cooperation with the abovementioned university partners (which may include teaching courses);

- Scientific support for PhD candidates and their projects.


Personal Skills and Professional Experience:

- Experience in managing large applied research projects;

- Excellent knowledge concerning the Portuguese and European public research funding system;

- At least three years international work experience at research departments in industry, applied research institutions or universities;

- Capacity for teamwork and experience in leading research groups;

- Excellent Portuguese and English language capabilities;

- Basic knowledge in German is advantageous;

- Excellent capability of communicating complex scientific results with need for explanation, e.g. for customers and cooperation partners.


Academic Qualifications:

- Academic education in agricultural engineering, process engineering, chemical engineering, chemistry, biochemistry, or similar fields. A PhD in one of these fields is advantageous.

- High visibility of scientific career proven by international publications.


What we offer:

- Excellent work conditions;

- Being part of the team of one of the most renown applied R&D institutions of the world;

- Exciting project with high economic impact;

- Adequate salary (depending on the professional experience and academic degree);

- Possibility to adhere to private health insurance plan;

- Opportunities for further training.


Application Process:

Applications are permanently open until the ideal candidate is selected. A first “cut-off” day to evaluate applications will be the 31st of March 2021.

The selected candidate is expected to start working in June 2021.

Applications shall be sent by email to and contain in one PDF file:

- CV – mandatory;

- Motivation Letter – mandatory;

- Recommendation Letters are optional but also welcome.


Important observation: This job opening is pending on the approval of an investment proposal submitted to the Portuguese Funding Programme Alentejo 2020.