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Early Stage Researcher (ESR3) position - Catalyst Design by Predictive Modelling of Aqueous Phase Reforming of Renewable Liquid Feedstocks (MSCA-ITN BIKE Project)

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    Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche - ICCOM
    ChemistryComputational chemistry
    PhysicsSolid state physics
    First Stage Researcher (R1)
    26/05/2020 23:00 - Europe/Brussels
    Italy › Pisa
    H2020 / Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions


An EU-funded Marie Skłodowska-Curie Early-Stage Researcher (ESR) position is available in the area of the theoretical/computational modeling of catalysts for Aqueous Phase Reforming of Renewable Liquid Feedstocks  at the Institute of the Chemistry of Organometallic Compounds (ICCOM) of the Italian Consliglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR, Council for National Research), in Pisa, Italy.

This is a full-time position (40 hours per week), fixed-term for 30 months, with a start date as soon as possible and no later than 1st October 2020.


The successful applicant will carry out European Union-funded research within the “BIKE: BImetallic catalysts Knowledge-based development for Energy applications” Marie Skłodowska-Curie Innovative Training Network (lTN) project (Grant agreement no. 813748), which offers unique doctoral training and research opportunities. The BIKE project will develop the next generation of bimetallic catalyst for green and blue hydrogen production. The programme will combine a range of complementary, multidisciplinary research expertise comprising: computational predictive modelling; operando characterization of catalysts; tuneable, robust, and scalable preparative methods of bimetallic nanoparticles; catalyst testing and operation; and reactor/process design. The BIKE network comprises 10 member institutions and partner organisations, spanning both academia and industry, located in Bulgaria, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Norway, Spain, and the United Kingdom. So far, 13 ESRs were already recruited across the BIKE network and the ESR3 position offered with this anouncement will complete the set of 14 BIKE ESRs. Each ESR will conduct research on a specific, but closely related research area. The ESRs will work in areas spanning heterogeneous catalysis, green chemistry, hydrogen economy, and materials and chemical sciences within a framework of highly specialized research groups from leading European academic and industrial laboratories. The network will provide outstanding inter-disciplinary training opportunities through hands-on research projects, international lab exchanges, industrial secondments, and specialist workshops and conferences. ESRs are generously funded with many opportunities for travel and networking.

This full-time, fixed-term ESR position will based at the Institute of the Chemistry of Organometallic Compounds (ICCOM) of the Italian Consliglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR, Council for National Research), located in Pisa, Italy, under the supervision of Dr. Alessandro Fortunelli, and will involve research and study in the area of predictive modeling of catalytic processes for the Aqueous Phase Reforming of Renewable Liquid Feedstocks. The ESR will collaborate in research, attend joint training events, and contribute to workshops and conferences across the BIKE network. The post-holder will be expected to register to study for a PhD at the University of Pisa (3 years) as an integral part of this ESR position. The ESR will be provided with a generous stipend to cover living and travel costs for the duration of 30 months; tuition fees will be covered by the project. The ESR will also receive funds to support participation in the BIKE-ITN European-wide research and training events. The network ESR/PhD students will receive training primarily through their host institute with additional training provided by visits to other host institutes and industrial partners in the network.


There are strict eligibility and residency requirements that must be met. Applicants must be either European citizens (from EU Member States or Associated Countries, but not residents of Italy), or from Other Third Countries (i.e. USA, Canada, Australia, Japan, India, China, etc.).

At the time of recruitment (i.e. first date of employment/signature of the contract) applicants must meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • Have less than 4 years research experience (measured from the time their Master’s or equivalent degree was awarded).
  • Not have been awarded a doctorate/PhD.
  • Be a national of any country other than the country of the premises of the host organization to which they are applying, i.e. in this case Italy (unless they have legally resided outside that country for at least 3 out of the last 4 years).
  • Not have resided in the country of the recruiting host (i.e. in this case Italy) for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately before the recruitment date and not have carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in that country – unless as part of a procedure for obtaining refugee status under the Geneva Convention.

Essential criteria:

  • Master’s degree (MSc) or equivalent such as MChem or MSci (but not BSc) in chemistry, physics, material science, chemical engineering or a related field
  • Experience in computational research laboratory and teamwork
  • Good organizational skills
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English
  • Good computational skills including basic text and data manipulation and additionally proven experience in density-functional theory simulations.
  • Demonstrated ability and self-motivation in catalysis/materials modeling, together with ability to think analytically and creatively

Desirable criteria:

  • Publications in peer-reviewed journals
  • The ideal candidate should have an academic success. It should prove a compromise with the marked aims, high initiative and dedication and a big capacity for team work. It would be of great interest if the candidate has the capacity to be integrated into different foreign research groups
  • Previous experience in contributing to a collaborative interdisciplinary research environment

Required Language(s):

  1. English – It is a requirement that applicants demonstrate that their ability to understand and express themselves in both written and spoken English is sufficient for them to derive the full benefit from the network training, and to embark on a PhD at the Pisa university.
  2. A very basic working knowledge of Italian.


Applications should be sent by email to:


and marked for the attention of Segreteria CNR-ICCOM (and additionally Dr. Alessandro Fortunelli).

Applications sent to other addresses will not be considered for evaluation.

Deadline for receipt of complete applications: 26th May 2020.

The subject of the application email must contain the following information:

"Application for the ESR3 position in the Catalyst Design by Predictive Modelling of Aqueous Phase Reforming of Renewable Liquid Feedstocks – MSCA-ITN BIKE Project (Grant agreement no. 813748)”.

The application email must be accompanied by a set of information and documents:

  1. An application form which should follow the template provided as "Internal Application form" (in Italian) signed by the applicant indicating their full name, date and place of birth, citizenship, postal address, and emaiI address. The applicant shall download the "Internal Application form" below and follow rigorously the instructions provided in the form to prepare the relevant documents, i.e.: Allegato A, Allegato B, Allegato C, plus a scanned copy of the first page of the passport, and as additional attached documents, if not already included into Allegato B: a copy of at least the first page of MSc Thesis, plus a list of the exams passed at university with grades, a list of scientific publications, together with a cumulative pdf document containing only their first pages, a list of professional titles, together with the corresponding pdf files proving them. Note that it will be checked that the applicants fulfil the eligibility criteria set out in article 3.4 of the H2020 Guide for Applicants Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions - Innovative Training Networks (ITN), see:



  1. Optional: Contact information (including email addresses) of TWO academic referees.
  1. Allegato B described in the Internal Application form file will contain a detailed CV illustrating the candidate's educational background, a list of undergraduate exam results and degrees held (with grades/rankings); a list of publications, poster and oral presentations (if any); academic prizes or scholarships, etc.; and scientific experience and skills. The document must be signed by the applicant. A template CV in English as found at https://europass.cedefop.europa.eu/documents/curriculum-vitae/templates-instructions/templates/doc can be optionally attached as an additional document. As descried in the "Internal Application form" file, further documents also include among others:
  1. A copy of Master’s thesis or equivalent (in pdf format) including a 1 page summary written in English.
  1. Scanned copies of academic transcripts and degree certificates for the higher education qualifications held with a transaltion into English.
  1. Note that an official translation into English and equivalence certificate of the Master’s degree or equivalent will be required at the point of contract signature.

Salary range: € 37,434.96 to € 48,156.66 per 12 months

The funding for this Marie Skłodowska-Curie Early Stage Researcher position provides for a remuneration whose gross amount for Italy will be approximately € 48,156.66 per 12 months. Actual net salary will depend on employer deductions and personal circumstances. This amount includes an annual living allowance and a mobility allowance (to cover the expenses associated with working in a different country).

Allowance eligibility depends on the personal circumstances of the ESR:

Living Allowance: total amount € 40956.66 per 12 months. This figure is inclusive of the country coefficient for Italy.

Mobility Allowance: total amount € 7,200 per 12 months.

A further Family allowance of total amount € 3,000 per 12 months may be also awarded depending on personal circumstances: eligibility depends on supporting evidence that at the time the ESR position starts the post the ESR is married, or is engaged in a partnership equivalent to marriage in the country it was formalised, or have dependent children.

For informal enquiries please contact Dr. Alessandro Fortunelli Email: alessandro.fortunelli@cnr.it

More information about the ITN BIKE programme, the open positions and host organizations is available on the project’s dedicated website: www.bike-msca.eu

More Information


See the section on Basic Information,

Eligibility criteria

See the section on Basic Information,

Selection process

See the section on Basic Information, The selection process consists in 2 stages and will include an interview which will be held remotely via skype during the day of June 3rd. Applicants must provide a skype name for remote interview,

Additional comments

The application form MUST follow a template complying with CNR rules and follow instructions provided in the template. Interested applicants should download the Internal Application form as attached to this offer and follow rigorously the instructions therein contained. Applicants can contact "segreteria@iccom.cnr.it" if further information or clarification is needed, Please note that the application form is in Italian, with an English translation at the end.

Preliminary inquiry with Dr. Alessandro Fortunelli (alessandro.fortunelli@cnr.it) is advised.

Offer Requirements

    Chemistry: Master Degree or equivalent
    Physics: Master Degree or equivalent
    Other: Master Degree or equivalent
    ENGLISH: Excellent


Experience in density-functional theory simulations and preferably theoretical/computational modeling of catalytic processes by metal and metal oxide nanoparticles.

Work location(s)
1 position(s) available at
CNR-ICCOM, Istituto di Chimica dei Composti Organometallici
v Moruzzi 1

EURAXESS offer ID: 517405


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