JOB OPPORTUNITIES 1 PhD position available for EU project (ITN-European Joint Doctorate) NOWELTIES







NOWELTIES - Joint PhD Laboratory for New Materials and Inventive Water Treatment Technologies.  Harnessing resources effectively through innovation is a Marie Sklodowska Curie Action European Joint Doctorate (EJD) project (programme Innovative Training Networks (ITN) of Horizon 2020). Its primary objective is to organize a platform that will provide cutting edge training opportunities for the education of tomorrow`s water treatment experts. The core activity is the research programme (composed of 14 individual research projects) aimed at development of inventive water treatment technologies (advanced biological treatments, innovative oxidation processes, hybrid systems) that allow catering for the varied treatment demands for a plethora of interconnected streams arising from recycling loops. These technologies will be able to control contamination by organic micropollutants (OMPs) and improve recovery of water across a diversity of scales enabling a smart combination of decentralized and centralised approaches. Besides a holistic training in the field of wastewater treatment dealing with state-of-the-art technologies, experimental techniques and knowledge management methodologies, NOWELTIES will provide a unique training approach to learning complex complementary skills leading to independent and critical thinking which seeks for originality and innovation.

We are looking for a post-graduate researchers (Early Stage Researchers - ESR), specialized in Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, Environmental engineering, Materials Engineering, Environmental science, or similar.

Candidate should have a strong interest in (waste)water treatment and interdisciplinary research including bioprocesses for wastewater treatment, nanotechnology, and fate of organic and inorganic contaminants in engineered treatment systems.

The position is offered for 3 years for the following individual research project:

Fellow code: ESR 7

Title of individual research project

Surface modification and functionalisation of adsorbent materials

Host institution

Faculty of Technology and Metallurgy (TMF), Belgrade, Serbia

Double doctorate degree

  1. Faculty of Technology and Metallurgy (TMF), Belgrade, Serbia
  2. Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture (FSB) , Zagreb, Croatia

Brief description of individual research project

Nano-engineered adsorbents offer great potential for water innovations, in particular for decentralized treatment systems, point-of-use (POU) and point-of-entry (POE) devices and for removing non-degradable contaminants. This ESR project will study processes for surface modification and functionalisation of inorganic (natural zeolites) and carbon based (graphene oxide (GO) and reduced graphene oxide (RGO) adsorbents aimed to improve their sorptive characteristic and applicability in wastewater treatment. Sorbent surface will be modified to improve adsorptive efficiency and surface polarity using two approaches:  1) impregnation by different oxides (using thermal and mechano-chemical treatments) and biopolymers (wet impregnation of chitin, alginate) and 2) use of environmental friendly non-equilibrium plasmas operating at atmospheric and low pressures for enhanced performance of the adsorbents. Plasma–surface interactions will tune physical, chemical, and morphological properties of adsorbents.


Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture (FSB) , Zagreb, Croatia – 8 months

Supervisory team

Nevenka Rajic (TMF) 

Lidija Curkovic (FSB)  

Nikola Skoro (IPB)


Educational requirements

Chemistry, Chemical Engineering, Environmental engineering, Materials Engineering, Environmental science, or similar.


Other specific requirements

Previous experience in experimental research-like activities (e.g. demonstrated in the form of master thesis work) in the field of (waste)water treatment, material sciences or plasma processing will be considered a plus.



The hired researcher will compulsory enrol in Doctoral Programmes at two Universities (host institution and mobility host) and undertake mobility in order to implement the Individual Research Project, as well as to participate in a sustained training programme that will lead to awarding double doctoral degree.

- Remuneration according to MSCA ITN rules


Eligibility criteria

-    Nationals from any country may apply

-    Mobility: at the time of the recruitment, the researcher must not have resided or carried out his/her main activity (work, studies, etc.), in the country of the chosen host institution (recruiting beneficiary) for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to the date of the recruitment.

-    Research category of Early Stage Researcher (ESR): researchers who, at the time of the recruitment, have not yet been awarded a doctorate degree and are in the first 4 years (full-time equivalent) of their research careers, including the research training period that would entitle them to a doctorate.


General evaluation criteria

-    Educational background relevant for the chosen position (individual research project)

-    For holders of an official university degree from the countries within the European Higher Education Area (EHEA):  A minimum of 300 ECTS credits completed in official university studies are required, of which at least 60 must be at a master’s degree level.  For holders of a university degree obtained in another country, an equivalent degree that qualifies the holder to begin doctoral studies in the country in which it was issued (a certificated from the University may be required).

-    Previous research experience, relevant to the chosen position.

-    High proficiency in spoken and written English

-    Networking and communication skills (to be evaluated in the interview).


Selection process

Pre-selection: will be based on CV, experience, skills and motivation letter.

Interviews: Short-listed candidates will be interviewed.

Start of contract: at the latest 1 February 2020


How to apply

Applicants should send full application consisting of:

-    Curriculum Vitae (Europass format recommended; Please specify your residence/work place in the last 3 years).

 -   University transcripts (grades)

-    A statement letter addressing his/her research interests in relationship to the selected individual research project.

-    2 recommendation letters


to indicating ref. “NOWELTIES call for ESR7” in the subject of the email


The deadline to submit the required documentation is 28 October 2019.