Q&A and recruitment news

Our second recruitment call is now closed. Currently we are appointing the candidates. If you have applied for a project and having any practical questions, please contact the NESSC office.

MSC mobility eligibility explained: Eligible researchers have not resided or carried out their main activity, such as work or studies, in the Netherlands for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to the date of appointment (= reference date). Compulsory national service and/or short stays such as holidays are not taken into account.

Career eligibility explained: At the date of appointment (= reference date) the PhD student must be in the first four years (full-time equivalent research experience) of their research careers and not yet have been awarded a doctoral degree. They are required to have a MSc in natural sciences, at the date of appointment, relevant to NESSC research, including mathematics, physics, chemistry, ecology, earth sciences and environmental sciences.

Q-What are the evaluation criteria?

A – All applications will be judged on the four evaluation criteria, which will be scored between 0-5, the threshold score for each of criterium is 3.0.
1- Education background: MSc degree, topic of research projects and grades obtaiend (weight 35%)
2- Motivation for the position(s) as inferred from the letter and (when invited for interview) enthusiasm during the interview (weight 35%)
3- Presentation skills and (when invited for interview) performance during interview (weight 20%)
4- English language proficiency (weight 10%)

Q- Can I apply for multiple positions?

A – Applications will only be considered: if received through the mandatory online application form; that are specified and motivated for the specific position; are completed/finished. The maximum number of positions one can apply for is three. Please write one motivation letter in total (not one for each position) and indicate your motivation to each of your choices, including an order of preference. Submit the letter to every project you are applying for separately.

Q- I am currently completing my master's study, but will not finish before the recruitment call deadline, what should I do?

A- Please mention in your application the date you expect to finish your study and the date you expect to receive your degree. You can show e.g. the results you already received and the subjects of your MSc study etc. You should have finished your study before the appointment date and receive your diploma shortly after (maximum three months after your appointment). In the case you haven’t yet finished your MSc studies, please include a written statement of your supervisor.

Q-When is the expected employment date?

A- This will be between September 2019 and March 2020, there is some flexibility in the starting date, dependent on whether visa’s need to be arranged. The latest possible appointment date is 1 April 2020.

Q-Do I need to be able to show a TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) score?

A- If you have or something similar, yes please. If you do not have a TOEFL score or something similar please describe (how you have obtained) your excellent proficiency of the English language (both oral and written).

Q-When will I be informed if I am invited for an interview?

A- If you applied via the official way, you will receive a response in the end of November 2019.


Please do not email us your CV and motivation letter. Applications will only be considered if received through the mandatory online application system (via the application links) and if completed and submitted. Use your motivation letter to convince the PI you are the most excellent, smart and suitable candidate for the specific position you have chosen.
Please use your common sense in what you should and/or can show us with your application in convincing us that you: are eligible, have finished your MSc before the appointment date and have an excellent proficiency of the English language (both oral and written), etc.

When in doubt please contact the NESSC office

NESSC is a so-called Gravitation Program, funded by the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science (OCW). The programme has recieved further funding from the Europen Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie, grant agreement No 847504.