Project Researcher in Wood Fiber and Biopolymer Chemistry

Åbo Akademi University (ÅAU) is an internationally acknowledged research university with an extensive responsibility for providing education in Swedish in Finland. With its international research community and its strong Nordic ties, Åbo Akademi University has an acclaimed and recognized position within research and education both nationally and internationally. The Faculty of Science and Engineering develops solutions and processes to slow down climate change, promotes a cleaner environment and a healthier sea and finds methods to discover, treat and prevent diseases. Our goal is a healthy human in a sustainable society. Our research is done in cooperation with the industry, research institutes and other universities both in Finland and abroad.

The Faculty of Science and Engineering offers one position as project researcher for 30 months within the project ‘Emission Free Pulping’ funded by the Business Finland. The position is placed at the Laboratory of Natural Materials Technology, which is part of the subject cluster Chemistry and Chemical Technology. Research at the Laboratory of Natural Materials Technology focuses on promoting sustainable, resource efficient, and multipurpose use of biomass in products including paper, fiber, and wood products, but also for novel biomaterials, biocomposites, biochemicals, and bioenergy. 


In this recruitment, we are primarily looking for a candidate with a background in the following field(s): wood science, lignocellulose chemistry, wood biopolymer chemistry, surface analysis, chemistry and chemical technology, and material science and engineering.

Description of the position

The main task will be to carry out work within the scope defined by the project, within Emission Free Pulping (EFP) program. 

EFP program represents a ground-breaking initiative aimed at challenging and revolutionizing current pulping processes and developing novel pulping concepts to drastically reduce CO2 emissions. The EFP consortium, coordinated by VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, consist of 10 research organizations in both countries and several major forest industries. The project task at ÅAU has a strong focus on the development of analytical toolboxes that will allow to investigate fiber liberation more efficiently. 

The employment can start as soon as possible or as per agreement. The appointed person will be placed at the Faculty of Science and Engineering. The position is located in Turku.

Qualification and assessment

We are looking for a motivated project researcher who has an education background in wood science or lignocellulose chemistry, biomass and fiber characterization and chemistry, chemistry and chemical technology, or other closely related field suitable for the position described above.

Qualification requirements for positions as project researcher:

  • doctoral degree in wood science or lignocellulose chemistry, chemistry or chemical engineering, material science and engineering, or other fields defined above
  • Excellent oral and written skills in English
  • Good knowledge and research experiences in wood science, biomass and fiber characterization and processing, and lignocellulose chemistry are considered a merit.

The applicants are assessed based on the qualifications above and possible results of research in the relevant field or related subjects. During the selection process the applicants can be invited to an interview.

Terms of employment

The principle of total working time (1,612 hours per year) applies to employment as project researcher. The work tasks are defined in an annual work plan.

The salary is determined in accordance with the general collective agreement for universities and is dependent on the final employment.

A trial period applies for new employees.


Submit the electronic application form below (, the position is open for application until 1st of March 2024 at 3:00 pm (Finnish time zone). Support for submitting the electronic application can be found here:

The following attachments should be submitted:

  1. A free-form application letter (max. one page)
  2. A list of max. three references and their contact details
  3. Degree certificate(s)
  4. a CV in accordance with the recommendations of the Finnish National Board on Research Integrity, TENK:, including a full list of publications with links to the publications or to a file sharing system where the publications are stored
  5. copies of diplomas including transcript of records (BA, MA, MSc, other) and study transcripts for bachelor and master’s degrees. 
  6. brief description of research experiences and research plan on development of analytical toolboxes for biomass and fiber characterization (max. 5 pages)

Contact details

For more information on the position, please contact Professor Chunlin Xu, email: and (about the application process) HR-specialist Anna Lübchow, email:

Åbo Akademi University is actively working for equal gender distribution and diversity across all personnel groups.

Application period starts: 2024-01-24 10:00Application period ends: 2024-03-01 15:00