Two PhD Positions on Improving the Sustainability of Our Foods through Life Cycle Assessments

Organization: KU Leuven
Location: Oude Markt 13 Leuven, Belgium
Duration: Full-time
Deadline: July 08, 2022
Description: The MeBioS division investigates the interaction between biological systems and physical processes. In the Sustainability of the Agri-Food chain group, headed by Prof. Annemie Geeraerd Ameryckx, two PhD positions are available related with Life Cycle Assessments (LCA) applied to our food choices.

In the past years, the sustainability of our food products is increasingly being focused upon. Popular media easily come forward with bold, generalizing statements, while the underlying facts and figures are often weak and unnuanced. What is especially missing is the lack of context when making statements. While this is a more general trend in our modern society (not limited to foods), opinions about food are often formulated in a strong, passionate way because of the intimate relationship we all have with our foods – after all, we ingest them several times a day.

In this research, the aim is to develop a framework that helps researchers to reflect on the sustainability of our foods in a more rigorous way. The quantification of the sustainability of our foods is typically done using life cycle assessments (LCA), an exact sciences research method. We hypothesize that this isolated, classical approach is not sufficient to bring LCA applications to their full potential, especially when it comes to our value-laden food product choices.
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