PhD Improving Pluvial Flood Early Warning and Real-Time Flood Extent Mapping

Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)

Delft, Netherlands 🇳🇱

FACULTY/DEPARTMENT: Faculty of Civil Engineering and Geosciences




SALARY: € 2.541,00 – € 3.247,00



Job description

In the NWO Perspective Programme Future FRM Tech (Future Flood Risk Management Technologies for rivers and coasts) four Dutch universities are collaborating with two foreign universities, two knowledge institutes, 15 companies and 9 societal partners to develop flood resilient landscapes for rivers and estuaries as well as technical solutions for water barriers. Within this programme, we have a job opening for an enthusiastic PhD candidate to work on improving pluvial flood early warning and real-time flood extent mapping. The floods of July 2021 in the Heuvelland of Limburg (and in the neighbouring regions of Belgium and Germany) are seen by many stakeholders and citizens as an unprecedented event. The insured damage estimations amount to more than 200 million euros and still today several residents have not been able to return to their homes. Reflecting back on the event with water managers from the Waterboard Limburg, it appeared to be particularly difficult to “nowcast” the flood extent during the event. In this PhD project you will contribute towards improving real-time flood warning and mapping during extreme rainfall and discharge events, based on recent advances in rainfall nowcasting and numerical weather prediction, radar and satellite technology, as well as hydrologic and hydraulic modelling. The knowledge resulting from your research is expected to improve flood early warning and crisis management as well as to reduce damage, not only in the Netherlands but also in other regions of the world prone to pluvial flooding.


Our preferred candidate has:

  • A completed MSc in hydrology, atmospheric sciences, (environmental) physics, (civil) engineering or related field;
  • Affinity with the application of remote sensing and numerical models in the field of hydrology, hydraulic engineering and water management.
  • Strong quantitative and communication skills (written and oral) are a prerequisite,
  • A motivation to work with (BSc and MSc) students.

This is a research position in the NWO Perspective programme Future flood risk management technologies for rivers and coasts. You are expected to play an active role in programme activities and cases.

Doing a PhD at TU Delft requires English proficiency at a certain level to ensure that the candidate is able to communicate and interact well, participate in English-taught Doctoral Education courses, and write scientific articles and a final thesis. For more details please check the Graduate Schools Admission Requirements.

Conditions of employment

Doctoral candidates will be offered a 4-year period of employment in principle, but in the form of 2 employment contracts. An initial 1,5 year contract with an official go/no go progress assessment within 15 months. Followed by an additional contract for the remaining 2,5 years assuming everything goes well and performance requirements are met.

Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities, increasing from € 2541 per month in the first year to € 3247 in the fourth year. As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. The TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment with an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor. The Doctoral Education Programme is aimed at developing your transferable, discipline-related and research skills.

The TU Delft offers a customisable compensation package, discounts 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.

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 Civil Engineering & Geosciences

The Faculty of Civil Engineering & Geosciences (CEG) is committed to outstanding international research and education in the field of civil engineering, applied earth sciences, traffic and transport, water technology, and delta technology. Our research feeds into our educational programmes and covers societal challenges such as climate change, energy transition, resource availability, urbanisation and clean water. Our research projects are conducted in close cooperation with a wide range of research institutions. CEG is convinced of the importance of open science and supports its scientists in integrating open science in their research practice. The Faculty of CEG comprises 28 research groups in the following seven departments: Materials Mechanics Management & Design, Engineering Structures, Geoscience and Engineering, Geoscience and Remote Sensing, Transport & Planning, Hydraulic Engineering and Water Management.

Click here to go to the website of the Faculty of Civil Engineering & Geosciences.

Additional information

For more information about this vacancy, please contact Prof. Remko Uijlenhoet, e-mail: [email protected].

Application procedure

Are you interested in this vacancy? Please apply before 14 April 2023 via the application button and upload your motivation and CV.

  • You can apply online. We will not process applications sent by email and/or post.
  • A pre-Employment screening can be part of the selection procedure.
  • Please do not contact us for unsolicited services.





IHE Delft Institute for Water Education - MSc in Water and Sustainable Development