PhD scholarship in Homogeneous Catalysis

Thursday 06 Jun 19

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Apply no later than 1 July 2019
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A 3-year PhD fellowship is available in homogeneous catalysis at the Department of Chemistry, DTU from September 1, 2019 or soon thereafter. The fellowship is funded by a grant from Independent Research Fund Denmark and the project will be carried out under the supervision of Professor Robert Madsen.

Responsibilities and tasks

Reactions with hydrogen gas constitute the most important catalytic transformations in organic chemistry. Unfortunately, homogeneous catalysts for these transformations are based on precious platinum group metals or other expensive metal complexes. The aim of the project is therefore to develop inexpensive and non-toxic chromium catalysts for the dehydrogenation of alcohols and the hydrogenation of unsaturated functional groups.  The dehydrogenation with the release of hydrogen gas is possible when special ligands are employed for the chromium catalyst. The chromium-catalyzed alcohol dehydrogenation will be optimized with these ligands and the mechanism elucidated to explain the molecular pathways. The new catalysts will be applied in several dehydrogenation and hydrogenation reactions where the most valuable applications are the direct synthesis of amides and esters from alcohols and the preparation of enantiopure compounds by asymmetric hydrogenations.


Candidates should have a two-year master's degree (120 ECTS points) or a similar degree with an academic level equivalent to a two-year master's degree.

Approval and Enrolment

The scholarship for the PhD degree is subject to academic approval, and the candidate will be enrolled in one of the general degree programmes at DTU. For information about our enrolment requirements and the general planning of the PhD study programme, please see the DTU PhD Guide.


We offer
DTU is a leading technical university globally recognized for the excellence of its research, education, innovation and scientific advice. We offer a rewarding and challenging job in an international environment. We strive for academic excellence in an environment characterized by collegial respect and academic freedom tempered by responsibility.

Salary and appointment terms

The appointment will be based on the collective agreement with the Danish Confederation of Professional Associations. The allowance will be agreed upon with the relevant union. The period of employment is 3 years.

You can read more about career paths at DTU here.
Further information

Further information may be obtained from Professor Robert Madsen, +45 4525 2151,



You can read more about the Department of Chemistry at


Please submit your online application no later than 1 July 2019 (local time)


Applications must be submitted as one PDF file containing all materials to be given consideration. To apply, please open the link "Apply online", fill out the online application form, and attach all your materials in English in one PDF file. The file must include:

  • A letter motivating the application (cover letter)
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Grade transcripts and BSc/MSc diploma
  • Excel sheet with translation of grades to the Danish grading system (see guidelines and Excel spreadsheet here)

Candidates may apply prior to obtaining their master's degree but cannot begin before having received it.


Applications and enclosures received after the deadline will not be considered.

All interested candidates irrespective of age, gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.


DTU is a technical university providing internationally leading research, education, innovation and scientific advice. Our staff of 6,000 advance science and technology to create innovative solutions that meet the demands of society, and our 11,200 students are being educated to address the technological challenges of the future. DTU is an independent university collaborating globally with business, industry, government and public agencies.