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French-Spanish Joint PhD (University of Mulhouse / University of the Basque Country) on Biomimetic Polymer Coatings. Starting date: Nov 2020

Publish date 31/08/2020
Sector of Activity

We invite highly motivated and creative applicants for a Joint PhD position within a collaborative
project between Basque Center for Macromolecular Design and Engineering, POLYMAT
Fundazioa ( and the Institute of Mulhouse Materials Science at the University of
Haute-Alsace (IS2M, Mulhouse, France, The PhD will be prepared in these two
universities (2  18 months) on biomimetic waterborne polymer coating combining mutilayered
structure and surface texturation, two features found in snakeskin epidermis.

To mimic nature and transfer its operating concepts into man-made synthetic products is old as
humanity itself. Placed in a research context, the goal is to harness the ingenious principles and
mechanisms found in nature and develop smart bioinspired materials and manufacturing methods.
Over the last few decades, bioinspired research has penetrated the field of polymers. However,
biomimetic polymer materials have found applications mostly in biomedical science and
engineering. Considering the broad range of applications offered by polymer in modern life, the
lack of biomimetic approach into polymer coatings, a polymer product of high industrial
importance, is surprising. In this PhD project, we propose the synthesis of a new snakeskin
epidermis-like biomimetic waterborne polymer coating combining mutilayered structure and
surface texturation. Multicomponent coatings with separate layers can create sophisticated
multifunctional coating: hard/soft, linear/cross-linked or hydrophilic/hydrophobic. Nano- and
micro-textures created at the coating surface are relevant to create unique properties including low
gloss or high mechanical resistance.

Candidates can be of any nationality, but are required to undertake transnational mobility because
of joint PhD. Applications from candidates who already possess a doctoral degree will not be
considered. Candidates should ideally possess a Master’s degree in chemistry, polymer chemistry,
material science or a closely related discipline. Potential candidates should be able to demonstrate
motivation and a strong eagerness to learn. Individuals must possess excellent written, oral
communication in English and organizational skills. In addition, they should demonstrate the
ability both to work independently and as part of a team. Previous related research experience will
be a distinct advantage. Scientific curiosity with an open attitude to work interdisciplinary in the
framework of international collaborations is also essential.

Basic net amount is different in both universities, and the incumbent will have two separate
working contracts. In France, a net monthly salary of 1450 euros is offered for 18 months, while in
Spain the net monthly salary is 1168,41 euros for 18 months.

Applicants must send to the two involved institutions IS2M (France) and POLYMAT (Spain) the
required documents in one single PDF: a full CV, a motivation letter including a description of
previous research experiences and contact details, official transcript, at least one recommendation
letter before 21.08.2020. Only documents in English will be accepted. Applicants should submit
before September 15th the documentation to Dr. Radmila Tomovska (POLYMAT)
radmila.tomovska@ehu.eusand Dr. Abraham Chemtob (IS2M) The
ideal starting date would be in Nov 2020. Applications failing to include the requested
documentation, or where the candidates do not meet the eligibility criteria WILL NOT be
considered. Shortlisted candidates will be invited for in-person interviews (on site or by telephone /
webconference). We will endeavor to provide feedback to unsuccessful applicants where possible.

– A highly valuable double expertise in the two predominant zero-VOC polymerisations:
photopolymer science and polymerization in dispersed systems
– Interdisciplinary supervision. The PhD student will be supervised by two academics with
different expertise.
– In case of this double PhD, the institutions will confer two different doctoral titles.
– POLYMAT has obtained the ‘HR Excellence in Research award‘. The award reflects our
commitment to continuously improve our human resource policies in line with the European
Charter for Researchers, the Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers and our
commitment to achieve fair and transparent recruitment and appraisal procedures.

Career Opportunity / Job Vacancie French-Spanish Joint PhD on Biomimetic Polymer Coatings
Deadline 15/09/2020
Email /