The Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences (RBINS, Belgium) is recruiting a scientific collaborator (M/F/X) in the context of marine conservation and restoration. The new collaborator will be engaged in the BLUE4ALL  project, which will start in January 2023. This project is funded through the European Union’s Horizon 2020 program.


The research group MARECO (Marine Ecology and Management,, part of the Operational Directorate Natural Environment (OD Nature) of the RBINS has in-depth expertise with regard to marine research in various research domains. MARECO attaches great importance to the link between research and policy support. MARECO contributes to environmental impact assessment, environmental status assessment and marine spatial planning. The team coordinates multiple environmental monitoring programs that assess the status of the marine environment and study the impact of human activities at sea. The team uses state-of-the-art research equipment, modern lab facilities and a new research vessel. MARECO provides scientific services, including access to the 'Artificial Hard Substrate Garden' and identification of marine organisms.

This vacancy is situated within the MARECO activities with regard to marine conservation and restoration, more specifically in coordinating the BLUE4ALL project which aims to align top-down regulatory demands about European (networks of) MPAs with bottom-up societal expectations as a guarantee for achieving effective, efficient and resilient MPAs and networks of MPAs, and design of other effective conservation measures (OECM).


The focus of the new collaborator will be on (1) contributing to the development of the BLUE4ALL project’s interactive Blueprint Platform i.e. a guide to effective, efficient and resilient (networks of) MPAs, (2) tracking the progress of project deliverables and milestones, updating project partners and reporting to the EU funding agency, (3) interacting with the 12 information sites and 13 Living Labs partnering in BLUE4ALL to ensure that the guidance for achieving effective, efficient and resilient MPAs is both based on real-world examples and tested in ongoing conservation and restoration actions.


  • PhD in Sciences or Bio-engineering Sciences or equivalent.


Technical competence

Wide interest and track-record in multidisciplinary research related to all aspects of marine management (e.g. environmental, technical, regulatory, economic, and social);

Minimum of 5-years of experience working on marine management and conservation;

Prepared to participate in (inter)national workshops, conferences and symposia;

  • Proficient knowledge of the English language.

Generic competence

  • Excellent organization skills for a successful and timely execution of the widely ranging tasks;
  • Open, collaborative and inclusive attitude;
  • Prepared to take initiative, but also to work in close collaboration with other consortia team members within and beyond RBINS.

We offer

  • A full-time position as a scientific collaborator (SW2) for 4 years;
  • A dynamic, challenging, varied and stimulating research environment;
  • Free public commuting and/or bicycle allowance;
  • Startdate (with reservation): 01/04/2023.

How to apply

  • If interested, please send your motivation letter, CV and a copy of your diploma, with reference “Blue4All” the latest by 1 Febuary 2023 to Dr. Steven Degraer (

    For more information:

    - Concerning the job content or working conditions: Dr Steven Degraer (; +32494070371)

    - Concerning RBINS in general:

    Interviews with pre-selected candidates will take place from 2 February 2023.

    Only applications that meet the profile and that are received in time will be taken into consideration.

    Startdate (with reservation): 01/03/2023.

The Directorate Natural Environment (OD Nature) at the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences (RBINS) envisages being a centre of excellence in fundamental and applied research of biodiversity and ecosystems in support of the protection and sustainable management of the natural environment.

Marine Ecology and Management (MARECO) is active in different research domains ranging from marine biology, marine mammals, bats, nature conservation and environmental impact monitoring. In the framework of the monitoring of the impacts of offshore wind farms, acoustic surveys of marine mammals and bats are conducted since several years. Belgian Marine Data Centre (BMDC) is in charge of the management of the resulting oceanographic data, while Scientific Web sites and Applications (SWAP) develops and maintains scientific web sites and applications for OD Nature. A general description of the marine activities of the OD Nature can be found at


In the frame of the Digital Animal Sound Archive (DASA) project,

We are looking for an enthusiastic full-stack data applications developer

The DASA project, in cooperation with Natuurpunt and Natagora, has the objective to set-up an easily searchable archive of bio-acoustic recordings. Many researchers (both professional and voluntary) have large amounts (mostly in the order of magnitude of many terabytes) of bio-acoustic data (e.g. from marine mammals, bats). DASA’s main innovative character is in its gathering of bio-acoustic data from a multitude of scattered sources, present them in a coherent database, and make them available to the wider community with an interest in bio-acoustics, hence facilitating (citizen-)science.


More specifically, your tasks will focus on (1) database design and storage approach, (2) database and import procedure development, (3) data acquisition and validation and (4) user interface development, where you will work in close cooperation with the project coordinator and partners supported by the follow-up committee.


  • Master degree in Science or (Bio-)engineering, Informatics or equivalent, with a high interest in software development and data management (for diplomas awarded outside the BENELUX, a certificate of equivalence must be submitted),
  • Minimum 2 years of experience in software development related to data management.

Technical competence

Experience or training in one or more of the following domains is requested:

  • Proven track record of programming in the Java programming language.
  • Experience with Spring for web and REST API (restful application programming interface) development.
  • Experience in front-end web development and modern JavaScript.
  • Excellent knowledge of relational database systems (Oracle, PostgreSQL): design, SQL queries, PL/SQL and PL/pgSQL.
  • Knowledge of Unix/Linux, especially shell scripting, and day to day maintenance/upgrading of web applications in a Linux environment.
  • Experience with DevOps tools such as test-driven development, GitLab/GitHub, docker and maven.
  • Capable of implementing and consuming data exchange formats (json, xml, webservices, linked data).
  • Experience with big data files, like sensor systems and information technologies such as semantic web.
  • Experience with standards to ensure data interoperability like the Tethys software package for ecological acoustic data and DarwinCore (DwC) for metadata is an asset.
  • Experience with data publication to the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) via the Integrated Publishing Toolkit (IPT).
  • Experience with automated test frameworks commonly used in software engineering (e.g. junit for java) to validate the software code.

Generic competence

  • You are a team-player and willing to work for both a data-oriented and software-oriented project.
  • Solution-oriented, creative and not hesitant to acquire new skills.
  • Fluent in either French or Dutch and good knowledge of English is necessary.


  • Background in marine or environmental sciences.
  • Comfortable in establishing and maintaining good connections with (international) partners.

We offer

  • The position offered is for two-year full-time contract. It will be based at RBINS in Brussels.
  • Salary and conditions according to the conditions applicable at the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences for a contractual agent of class SW1 (level SW10 or SW11) of the scientific career.
  • Possibility to telecommute up to 3 days per week.
  • Reimbursement of home/working place travel costs by public transportation and allowance for cycling to the office.

How to apply

Application to be submitted electronically in a single PDF file, by e-mail, to Ruth Lagring ( with subject: “Application DASA”. The application should include a CV and a motivation letter.

Deadline for applications: 31/01/2023 – 12:30

All applications will be assessed after the deadline and shortlisted candidates will be contacted for an interview (remote or live depending on availabilities).

Contact person:

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