Thesis - Volunteer opportunity: fossil fuel free on VU campus


VU Energie Campus Organisatie


Are you interested in Energy transition and would like to learn more about its implementation on a local level? Do you want your research to have a direct impact and your results to be realised? Do you want to gain experience in sustainability consulting? Then join the Green Action Lab and help VU Amsterdam to improve its energetic transition!

The campus of Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is currently being redesigned. Energy transition will play an important role in this process, since greenhouse gas emissions are to be reduced 50% in 2030. Some measures such as the “Energy Master Plan” drawn up in 2017, and complying with the Climate agreement are important for the university to achieve such goals by reducing the demand for energy.


Through the Green Action Lab, you will collaborate with VU’s environmental and energy management team and collaborate them in (not exclusively):

-Over time and with the expected efforts to reduce building-related energy, is the user-related part becoming increasingly important? Do you want to influence that and how do you do that? Is it effective to tackle this?.

-Evaluation of the techniques associated with this ambition? Is the horizon realistic?.

-Can the VU generate and store energy itself by means of charging stations for electric

vehicles, solar panels and wind energy. What is the potential contribution of self-Generation?

-What are the most cost-effective measures? We will only achieve the target (-95% CO2).

-What is the best way to finance the investments?

-Which barriers can you expect and how can you remove them? In general, security of supply and costs are important aspects.

Throughout your assignment, you can tap on the knowledge of VU’s energy management as well as VU’s researchers. Furthermore, through the Green Action Lab, you will have access to a network of sustainability practitioners in Amsterdam and elsewhere, who you can contact for e.g. expert interviews. The intended outcome for the case commissioner is a list of feasible and effective measures to boost the energetic transition on campus with the idea that they will be realised.

Depending on your academic background and personal interests, you can choose to focus on physical, behavioural or other aspects.


- You are interested in energetic transition and emissions reduction, and

- You are a bachelor/master student at VU Amsterdam for the duration of the appointment

- You can come to VU on a regular basis

- You have good oral and written command of the English language

- You are open towards interdisciplinary collaboration and show a welcoming and tolerant work attitude

- Desired background in: Environmental/climate studies, Ecology and Evolution, Engineering, Environment and Resources management, or other sustainability-related fields

What are we offering?:
By joining the project team, you will gain experience in:

*Sustainability consulting experience

*Professional & personal skills workshops with certificate for your CV

*Flexible desk and a study spot at the Green Office-VU

*Peer reviewed publication in “Science for sustainability” open access academic journal (when thesis is graded above 7.5)

*Certificate on climate action (SDGs agent)

Duration: From 1 February until 30 June 2023 (flexible)

Working hours: 8 hours per week of practical work, research possible for the rest of the week

Place: VU Amsterdam and remote

Supervision: Green Action Lab & VU Energy management team

This project contributes to VU’s efforts to become the most sustainable university in the Netherlands and is embedded in its sustainability strategy 2020-2025.

Application process:

Are you interested in this position? Apply until 1st February 2023 by filling your information below and the Green Action Lab coordinator will contact you in 2-3 business days.

We are looking forward to receiving our application!

Closed for applications

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