The Faculty of Science, Forestry and Technology, Department of Chemistry

The application deadline has been extended until March 24th. Those who have previously applied for the position will be considered in the recruitment process.

We are now inviting applications for the post of Doctoral Researcher (PhD student) in Antiviral Activity of Woody Materials and Their Coatings in Built Environment) in the Marie-Skłodowska-Curie Doctoral Training Network DESTINY. The position is expected to begin on 1 September 2024, or on 1 December 2024 at the latest.

Read more below and submit your application no later than 24 March 2024.

Title, role and salary

We are seeking a highly motivated, enthusiastic and talented Doctoral Researcher (PhD student) to join our Sustainable Technologies research group in the Department of Chemistry at the Faculty of Science, Forestry and Technology. The position is located on the Joensuu campus, Finland. 

This position is part of the Doctoral Training Network DESTINY, a highly collaborative consortium consisting of 15 European participant organizations coming from academia, industry, and the creative sector. This joint action of six European Bioeconomy University network partner universities undertaking bioeconomy research and training have collaborated since 2019 to educate a new generation of truly European experts, fostering rigorous, relevant and interdisciplinary research developing solutions for the challenges of the 21st century. DESTINY will address the transition from a fossil-based economy towards a biobased economy by developing novel methods and tools to optimize biomass production systems, develop novel biobased value chains and assess their sustainability holistically to create a novel type of scientist: the bioeconomist.

Prior research has strongly indicated that specific chemical groups have synergetic ability to provide wood characteristics that can be considered antiviral. This means that virus droplets landing on wooden surfaces lose their infectivity very quickly. Understanding this chemical and structural synergy in wood allows the development of innovative materials that are inspired by natural defenses against viruses. This research aims to explore and test the hypothesis that the integration of a specific blend of natural compounds on surfaces or material formulations can enhance their broad-spectrum antiviral efficacy.

The main duty of the Doctoral Researcher is to complete their doctoral dissertation in accordance with their research proposal to be finalized at the beginning of the employment period.

The Doctoral Researcher will conduct research at the University of Eastern Finland (Joensuu campus, Finland) and will have the opportunity to make a research visit to the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences (BOKU) (Vienna, Austria) as part of the research project to improve our understanding on bioinspired antiviral surfaces.

As the research relies on cutting-edge technologies, the development of new approaches will be an integral part of your project. The training includes one or more rotations within European partner laboratories and participation in research school weeks to enhance some general scientist competences. Through collaboration with the industry, you will learn how technology development drives innovation in research. In addition, you will learn how to disseminate and communicate your project in close collaboration with the creative sector.

The Doctoral Researcher position will be filled by a person to be selected for the Doctoral programme in Science, Forestry and Technology (LUMETO)

The position will be filled for a fixed term of three years and is expected to begin on 1 September 2024, or 1 December 2024 at the latest, as agreed upon with the selected doctoral candidate and the main supervisor of their doctoral dissertation. The position will be filled for a fixed term due to it pertaining to a specific project and own doctoral degree. A probationary period is applied to all new members of the staff. 

The salary of the position is based on the salary system of MSCA. The salary consists of a living allowance and a mobility allowance. Mobility allowance covers additional, private mobility-related costs (e.g., travel and accommodation costs), non-professional costs under the action, which are covered by the research, training and networking contribution. If the recruited doctoral candidate has or acquires family obligations during the action duration, i.e., persons linked to him/her by (i) marriage, or (ii) a relationship with equivalent status to a marriage recognised by the legislation of the country or region where this relationship was formalised; or (iii) dependent children who are actually being maintained by the researcher, a family allowance will be paid as well. The gross salary in this position will be about EUR 3,600 per month for the whole duration of the project, including the mobility allowance (or about EUR 4,100 if eligible for the family allowance).

Our requirements and expectations


  • The person to be appointed as a Doctoral Researcher shall be qualified to pursue postgraduate studies.
  • An MSc degree in chemistry, biochemistry, microbiology, or related field in science or engineering.
  • A good command of the English language (IELTS grade min. 6.5, or equivalent).
  • Should not hold a doctoral degree.
  • Applicants for the PhD position should be in the first 4 years (full-time equivalent) of their research career. This 4-year period is measured from the date of obtaining your MSc degree (or equivalent).

Mobility requirement:

Applicants should not have resided or performed their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in Finland for more than 12 months in the 3-year period immediately prior to the start date of this position. Compulsory national service and/or short stays such as holidays are not considered.


  • A high motivation for PhD degree studies and industrially relevant research.
  • Being able to present a certificate of good conduct is a condition for the appointment.
  • Prior experience in microbiological or related laboratory work and characterization methods of solid materials are considered an advantage. The applicant is expected to present some documentation of this (e.g., a Master’s thesis, peer-reviewed publications, etc.).

For all requirements and expectations, the eligibility of the researcher will be determined at the date of their first recruitment in the action. This status will not evolve over the lifetime of the action, even if they are re-recruited at another beneficiary.

Your benefits

You will have access to the university’s staff benefits, including  
•    The opportunity for flexible multi-location work
•    Extensive occupational health care  
•    A broad selection of staff training
•    Staff discount on lunch in our campus restaurants, as well as on a range of other services  
•    Affordable sports services and tax-free bike benefit 

Please read more in the Work at UEF section on our website.  

You will have an opportunity to work in an interesting, meaningful and diverse role as part of our international, creative, participatory and inclusive academic community.    

Enjoy your life in Finland! Known for its cleanliness, welfare know-how, modern technology and superb education system, Finland is an exotic and safe country to work in. Please visit the Life in Finland section on our website to learn more.    

How to apply?

Submit your application by using our electronic application form no later than 24 March 2024 by 24:00 (midnight) Finnish time (UTC+2).

Please note that you must include the following appendices in your application:

  • A CV (
  • Copies of your academic degree certificates / diplomas, and copies of certificates / diplomas relating to your language proficiency, if not indicated in the academic degree certificates/diplomas
  • A transcript of records
  • A Motivation letter (max. 1 page)
  • Other documents to demonstrate the applicant’s merits for the position


More information on the European Bioeconomy University hosting this DESTINY MSCA-DN project can be found online at

For further information on the position, please contact Professor Antti Haapala by email,

For further information on the application procedure, please contact Human Resources Coordinator Noora Hämäläinen by e-mail:

Type of employment Temporary position
Contract type Full time
First day of employment 1 September 2024, or 1 December 2024 at the latest
Salary the salary system of MSCA
Number of positions 1
Full-time equivalent 100
City Joensuu
County Pohjois-Karjala
Country Finland
Reference number 1848/01.01.03/2024
  • Antti Haapala, +358445202849
Published 21.Feb.2024
Last application date 24.Mar.2024

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