Research group at imec & Vrije Universiteit Brussel

Postdoc Researcher Digital Innovation Business Models

Apply before 28 Feb 2023

Introducing SMIT

SMIT (Studies on Media, Innovation and Technology) is a research center of the Faculty of Social and Economic Sciences at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. SMIT is also a core research group of imec, Europe’s leading research institute on nano-technology and digital innovation.

Since 30 years, imec-SMIT specializes in economic, user and policy research on digital innovation in such domains as media, health, robotics, green and resilient cities, telecommunications and mobility. With over 100 colleagues from many nationalities and educational backgrounds, and an annual turnover of around 7 million EUR realized through more than 60 Flemish and European projects, SMIT is among the top European centres for social science research into digital innovation. It is a trusted partner of top companies and governmental agencies nationally and internationally, known for striving to both scientific excellence and to making a real difference on the ground. Via its knowledge centres on Media Literacy and on Data & Society, SMIT also translates its research findings into actionable guidelines and tools for citizens, governments and companies.

Research domain

Business Model researchers at SMIT analyze market structures, value networks and go-to-market strategies for innovative digital products and services in a variety of sectors, having specific attention for the potentially disruptive dynamics caused by digital technologies as well as for the specific challenges of reconciling public and private value in complex systems that often involve local, regional, national and European governments as key stakeholders. Working within national and international projects or for individual clients, our goal is to understand how a product or service can be brought to the market in a viable and sustainable way, and how it changes the relationships between the stakeholders involved. Where possible, we combine qualitative, strategic analysis with quantitative forecasting. For this, we rely on established methodologies for business modeling and strategic analysis, but we also use our own frameworks and strive to innovate in our methods, especially towards efficiently combining quantitative and qualitative methods and using digital methods and datasets.

About the position

We are looking for a Postdoc Researcher to join our team. In first instance, the researcher would be active in a large-scale European project on the future of the print media.

After an introductory period, the postdoc researcher will be able to take a leading role amongst the other business model researchers to develop new or improved methodologies and jointly determine new lines of research and interesting acquisition targets.

Research task will include

  • Steering the research, development and dissemination of innovative business model methodologies;
  • Liaising with the other business model researchers at SMIT, exchanging ideas and setting up a research roadmap.
  • Market (desk) research and literature studies, outlining and validating business model configurations -quantitatively and/or qualitatively but always with a solid empirical base;
  • Collaborating with the user research team to include business model oriented aspects within their Living Lab methodologies;
  • Working on national and international research projects related to emerging digital technologies in domains such as Media, Smart Cities, Healthcare, AI and Telecoms;
  • Publish research results in academic journals and conferences;
  • Acquire new national and international projects, in collaboration with the Unit Leaders, business modelling colleagues and Valorisation Managers

We offer

  • A dynamic and stimulating work environment with enterprising young scientists and experienced senior researchers in an international setting;
  • A unique SMIT spirit of enthusiasm, excellence and solidarity;
  • Flexible working conditions with opportunity for personal initiative;
  • Freedom to (co-)shape a research focus, create a project portfolio and research team;
  • High-quality innovation research on future-oriented services;
  • Attractive remuneration package;
  • High quality offices in the heart of Europe, excellent and flexible IT equipment;
  • A full-time, renewable contract for 1 year and long-term career perspectives, possibility to take up progressive responsible roles.


  • PhD in (Applied) Economics, Management, Business Engineering, Business Administration, Governance or similar with excellent academic results;
  • Experience with Business Modeling theory and practice;
  • Proficiency in qualitative & quantitative research methods or prepared to acquire these skills fast;
  • Strong interest in and affinity with digital emerging technologies, interest and expertise in media, telecoms, health, smart cities or mobility would be welcomed;
  • Good time management and planning skills;
  • Willing to travel within Europe several times per year;
  • Flexible attitude in working on several projects in a varying environment;
  • Academic writing skills and fluency in English. Dutch is a plus;
  • Experience with the acquisition of research projects is a plus.

Please send your CV and motivation letter before 28 February 2023 to Wim Cloots on

Sounds like the job for you?

Apply before 28 Feb 2023 by sending your CV and motivation to .