R&D Life Cycle Assessment and Circularity Built Environment

Job description

A sustainable world? A dream for many, a tangible goal for VITO. As a Flemish, internationally recognized research center, VITO wants to accelerate the transition to a sustainable world. VITO is one of the Belgian research partners (together with KU Leuven, imec and UHasselt) who's part of EnergyVille, a well-known R&D innovation hub in the field of sustainable energy and intelligent energy systems. Within VITO/EnergyVille, the "Life Cycle Assessment and Circularity " team contributes to shaping and implementing the transition to a more sustainable and circular built environment.

Within our experienced and motivated team, we conduct research in the field of life cycle assessment (LCA), circularity scans, digital building passports, material and component flows and innovations within the built environment. The scale of each study can vary, from raw materials and building materials to the level of neighbourhoods and cities. We work for and with a variety of customers: we advise companies and governments, both at local, regional, national and European level. Does this sound good to you? Then you might just become our enthusiastic new colleague ...

Some of your tasks:

  • You will work as a researcher in consultancy assignments for policy makers or industry and in funded research projects (e.g. Horizon Europe).
  • Your projects will have a focus on the evaluation of the sustainability of building elements, buildings, districts, and circular strategies within the built environment.
  • You will contribute to a more sustainable built environment through innovation projects. Based on your research, new solutions can be developed, tested and brought to the market.
  • Together with colleagues you monitor the project progress within the project team, and you align with the external partners involved. You also share the results with your customer.
  • You ensure innovation in our field of expertise in terms of the further development of LCA and circularity methodologies, scenario analysis, digitization and data processing.
  • You contribute to the cooperation within national and European consortia and you expand your network with Belgian and European authorities and industrial partners. You share your knowledge, gain new knowledge and get the best out of yourself and your colleagues.
  • Finally, you contribute to the acquisition of projects and the writing of offers and project proposals.

Job requirements

  • You hold a Master's degree in a relevant field. A PhD and/or experience with scientific publishing are a plus.
  • You have at least 2 years of demonstrable work experience in the field of LCA and/or circularity, experience in the construction environment is a plus.
  • Experience with structural engineering programs (e.g. REVIT, AutoCAD, Sketchup) are a beneficial.
  • You preferably have experience with advanced LCA software programs and with data processing.
  • You are adept at communicating and writing clear, understandable reports in English.
  • Knowledge of Dutch is of added value, but not required.

Examples of projects

In the ICEBERG project we are working together with 34 partners all over Europe. The overall aim of ICEBERG is to design, develop, demonstrate and validate advanced technologies for the production of high-purity secondary raw materials derived from construction and demolition waste. We explore several circular case studies across Europe, covering circularity of wood, concrete, mixed aggregates, plaster-board, glass, polymeric insulating foams and inorganic superinsulation materials. Our role is to assess and evaluate the sustainability and circularity aspects of related to the technologies and the new products produced.

The renovation of the conference building on the Joint Research Center in Geel (Belgium) offers a unique opportunity to put the New European Bauhaus Initiative into practice. It is also an opportunity to ensure that the European Green Deal results in a real construction project that is sustainable, attractive and inclusive, both intrinsically and in the way it is realised. Our team is closely involved in assessing the sustainability of the entire project via Level(s), a new European framework for examining the sustainability of buildings.

In the Demo-BLog project (will start in Autumn 2022) several functionalities of Digital Building Logbooks will be developed, demonstrated and evaluated. Our team will focus on the “material and multi-cycle circularity” functionality as a driver for enhanced reuse marketplaces. We will evaluate the potential contribution of the Digital Building Logbooks for circular buildings. Several Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), Life-cycle cost analyses (LCC) and circularity scans will be carried out.


  • You have real impact as you look for innovative solutions for today's challenges.
  • You are supported by helpful colleagues that are eager to share their expertise in the field.
  • You will be part of an organization where we show integrity and always strive for mutual benefit in close cooperation with all parties involved.
  • VITO/EnergyVille is an international organisation: 40 different nationalities work with us. Our working language is English.
  • We work ‘activity based’: our activities determine our workplace. On average we meet 2 times a week in our EnergyVille office in Genk. For the other days you can choose to work remotely from home or at one of our satellite offices (for example Antwerp-Berchem) depending on the needs of the activity.
  • You will learn life-long and develop your skills further by using the newest of the latest technologies that you can test on the market yourself.
  • We consider work-life balance to be of paramount importance at VITO. We are open to discuss your needs at any time and we have a flexible approach to finding solutions.