There is a full-time academic vacancy available at the Faculty of Engineering, Department of Electrical Engineering (ESAT), division of Processing Speech and Images (PSI) joint with the Faculty of Medicine, Department of Imaging & Pathology of KU Leuven for an interdisciplinary professor in the field of medical imaging and image analysis with focus on quantitative magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). We are looking for internationally oriented candidates with excellent interdisciplinary research experience and educational potential in the field of appointment. ESAT-PSI carries out fundamental and application-oriented research in the field of image and speech processing. The last decade has seen a paradigm shift towards data-driven modeling and automatic pattern recognition through machine learning based on large amounts of data. In the case of medical images, the available data are usually limited and additional domain knowledge is required, such as insight into the image acquisition and radiological and medical expertise. This poses specific challenges, but also offers new possibilities for interdisciplinary research in medical image analysis. To this end, the division works closely with biomedical researchers from KU Leuven within the interdisciplinary context of the Medical Imaging Research Center (MIRC) of the university hospital UZ Leuven. The Radiology and Translational MRI research divisions of the Imaging & Pathology department perform in vivo human MRI research in various clinical domains. In addition to state-of-the-art equipment, including four 3T human MRI scanners, the department has extensive expertise in designing advanced MRI studies to support translational research related to normal development and pathology. A particular challenge here is the adaptation of innovative MRI techniques such as diffusion-weighted MRI for routine use in the clinic, in particular reducing the scan time without undue loss of image quality and robust use in pediatric imaging. An additional challenge is the efficient analysis of the large amount of information contained in these images. In addition to clinical MRI, the departments Biomedical MRI performs experimental and preclinical MR imaging and spectroscopy using a 7T and a 9.4T MRI scanner. The research divisions ESAT-PSI and Radiology/Translational MRI already work together in the MIRC center. They want to broaden their complementary expertise and their research to the domain of quantitative MRI (qMRI), being the measurement with MRI in a non-invasive way of quantitative, objective tissue parameters, including T1 & T2, microstructure, perfusion, fat fraction…
You will build a research group at an international level with a methodological focus on imaging and image analysis for qMRI and its clinical applications. In contrast to conventional MRI imaging yielding only subjective grayscale values, the tissue parameters obtained with qMRI contain specific information about the presence and nature of pathology, its evolution and response to therapy. The emphasis in the intended interdisciplinary research is on the development of new techniques for qMRI acquisition, reconstruction and signal modelling, based on machine learning, to quantify novel qMRI biomarkers in a robust and efficient way in clinical practice. Applications include, but are not limited to, clinical studies of qMRI for improved diagnosis, therapy monitoring, and understanding of pathophysiology in neurology, oncology, cardiology, and pediatrics.
You conduct your research in synergy with other researchers from the ESAT and Imaging & Pathology departments within the MIRC and develop complementary expertise around this specific imaging modality. Research collaborations on multi-parametric/ multi-modal imaging are encouraged with groups like the ‘Medical Physics and Quality Assessment’ or ‘Biomedical MRI’units but also with other researchers focussing on linking different MR imaging techniques with disease grading and pathology.
You will supervise PhD students in both engineering and biomedical sciences, attract competitive research funding and publish internationally in renowned journals and conferences in the stated research domain.
You strive for excellence in your research, develop international collaborations within the aforementioned domain and thus contribute to the further strengthening of the scientific reputation of both departments.
You ensure high-quality education in the bachelor's and/or master's programs of the faculties of Engineering Science and of Medicine, with a clear commitment to the quality of the program as a whole. You also contribute to the pedagogical project of the faculties and the university by supervising bachelor's, master's and doctoral students.
You develop your teachings in accordance with KU Leuven’s vision on activating and research-based education and make use of the possibilities for the educational professionalization offered by the faculties and the university.
Your teaching assignment will be determined by mutual agreement based on your specific profile. It will be limited in scope in the first year(s) of your appointment. Also in your further career, the faculties pay much attention to the balance between research and teaching time.
In addition to research- and education-related tasks, you are expected to take on administrative and organizational tasks within the involved research divisions, departments, and faculties, as well as tasks of scientific and social service.
You have a PhD in Engineering or equivalent. A PhD in medical image analysis is a plus.
You have extensive research experience at postgraduate level in the field of this vacancy. Candidates with only a background in machine learning or image processing and no in-depth experience with medical imaging and MRI in particular will not be considered.
You have a strong profile in the field of the vacancy. The quality of your research is apparent from publications in leading international journals and conferences, from proven interdisciplinary and international collaborations and from acquired national and international funding.
You have demonstrable qualities related to academic education. Teaching experience is an advantage.
You possess organizational skills and have a cooperative attitude. You also possess leadership capacities within a university context.
A good command of English is required. KU Leuven provides courses in academic English.
The official administrative language used at KU Leuven is Dutch. If you do not speak Dutch (or do not speak it well) at the start of the employment, KU Leuven will provide language training to enable you to take part in meetings.
Before teaching courses in Dutch or English, you will be given the opportunity to learn Dutch, respectively English, to the required level.
We are offering a full-time employment in an intellectually challenging environment. KU Leuven is a research-intensive, internationally oriented university that carries out both fundamental and applied scientific research. Our university is highly inter- and multidisciplinary focused and strives for international excellence. In this regard we actively work together with research partners in Belgium and abroad and provide our students with an academic education that is based on high-quality scientific research.
You will work in Leuven, a historic, dynamic and lively city located in the heart of Belgium, within 20 minutes from Brussels, the capital of the European Union, and less than two hours from Paris, London and Amsterdam.
Depending on your record and qualifications, you will be appointed to or tenured in one of the grades of the senior academic staff: assistant professor, associate professor, professor or full professor. In principle, a junior researcher will be appointed as an assistant professor on the tenure track for a period of five years; after this period and with positive evaluation, she/he will be appointed permanently (or tenured) as an associate professor.
KU Leuven is well set to welcome foreign professors and their family and provides practical support with regard to immigration & administration, housing, childcare, learning Dutch, partner career coaching, …
To facilitate scientific onboarding and accelerate research in the first phase a starting grant of 100.000 euro is offered to new professors without substantial other funding, appointed for at least 50%.
For more information on the contents of the function, please contact:
• Prof. dr. ir. Georges Gielen, chair of the Department of Electrical Engineering (ESAT), tel. +32-16-324076, e-mail: email@example.com
• Prof. dr. Tania Roskams, chair of the Department of Imaging & Pathology, tel. +32-16-336596, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
• Prof. dr. ir. Frederik Maes, head of the research division ESAT-PSI, tel. +32-16-349025, e-mail: email@example.com
• Prof. dr. Chantal Van Ongeval, head of the research division of Radiology, tel. +32-16-343781, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can submit your application until 04/10/2022, only through our online application system. If you have problems submitting your application online, please send a message to email@example.com.
Add to your application the following documents (more information is available on the KU Leuven job site):
• your biosketch in which you indicate your added value as an academic for research, education and service to society of your past career and of your future activities (maximum 2 pages);
• a file on your five most important publications or realizations;
• an extensive cv including a full publication list and if applicable a portfolio of your projects;
• your research plan with focus on the development of your research line and research team in relation with the colleague-researchers of the entity of employment (maximum 5 pages);
• your vision on academic education and its organization (maximum 2 pages);
• your contribution to society by outreach and public communication on science and technology, internal representation in boards and councils and service activities directly in relation to your developed expertise (maximum 1 page);
KU Leuven is committed to creating a diverse environment and is therefore an equal opportunity employer. It explicitly encourages candidates from groups that are currently underrepresented at the university to submit their applications.
KU Leuven places great importance on research integrity and ethical conduct and will therefore ask you to sign an integrity statement upon appointment.
KU Leuven seeks to foster an environment where all talents can flourish, regardless of gender, age, cultural background, nationality or impairments. If you have any questions relating to accessibility or support, please contact us at diversiteit.HR@kuleuven.be.
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