Professor in Architectural History

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(ref. ZAP-2020-271)Last modification : Friday, December 18, 2020

In the Science, Engineering and Technology Group of KU Leuven, Faculty of Engineering Science, Department of Architecture there is a full-time academic vacancy available in the area of architectural history on campus Leuven-Heverlee. We are looking for highly motivated candidates with the capacity of developing research at the interface of architecture (especially construction and the material aspects of building) and history, who are able to engage actively with our educational programmes. The research performed at the Department of Architecture encompasses the field of architecture in its broadest sense, meaning the built environment created by man, at the heart of which stands design. From theory and history to construction and building technology, from heritage conservation to urbanism, spatial planning and landscape architecture, we strive only for excellence. This research is located at the Faculty of Engineering Science (Leuven-Heverlee) and at the Faculty of Architecture (Campus Sint-Lucas Brussels and Ghent). The Department serves as international centre of expertise in these areas and numbers over 160 doctoral researchers from all over the world ( The purpose of this vacancy is to complement, expand and build upon existing expertise at KU Leuven, the Faculty of Engineering Science, and the Department of Architecture. Within the general boundaries of research on the architecture of the past, we want to focus on European architecture from the period before the French Revolution and before the heyday of the Industrial Revolution (late eighteenth and early nineteenth century). Ideally, candidates will have gained experience with research on the materiality of the architecture of the past, specifically pre-industrial construction techniques, within the fields of Building Archaeology / Bauforschung and Construction History. He/she is demonstrably familiar with building analysis on site, and can show to have previous experience with archival and iconographical sources which are relevant for the aforementioned period and geographical area. Moreover, he/she is interested in the development of the construction site and its main actors (architect, engineer, contractor, building professions). Familiarity with the field of heritage is generally considered as an advantage, because of the expected synergy with expertise already present in the Department, as is experience with digital tools for the study of the architecture of the past (digital humanities and digital approaches for the documentation of heritage). The candidate for this position shall ally him/herself with the Section History, Theory and Criticism of Architecture within the Department at its site in Leuven-Heverlee. He/she will be part of an environment combining academic research fuelled by the Humanities and Social Sciences with research by design and engineering. This is also reflected in the educational programs of bachelor and master of Engineering science/Architecture, master (after master) of Conservation of Monuments and Sites, master (after master) of Human Settlements, and master (after master) of Urbanism, Landscape and Planning under the aegis of the Faculty of Engineering Science. He/She will play an important role in anchoring the domain of architectural history within KU Leuven and in particular in the Faculty of Engineering Science, where this field has existed for over a century. Website unit

  • You develop high-level, internationally oriented research on architectural history, specifically on European architecture from the period before the French Revolution and before the heyday of the Industrial Revolution (late eighteenth and early nineteenth century). You pay attention to the broader connections of your subject with the global context.
  • You will be actively involved in doctoral research at the Department of Architecture, as supervisor or as a member of the advisory committee. You will thus build up your research group, demonstrating academic leadership qualities.
  • You also actively develop new research projects at the Section and in the Department, both fundamental and applied in nature. You competitively acquire research funding on the university, national and/or European level. You publish in the top channels and fora of your field.
  • You actively support and assist in developing national and international collaboration at the Section and at the Research Unit you are associated with.
  • You strive for excellence in your research and consequently provide a contribution to the continued development of the Department.

Remark. During the first years, your educational load will be limited in agreement with the educational committee and with the other professors of architectural history, so as to leave you sufficient space to build up your research. 

  • You ensure high-quality education within the broad field of architectural history before the end of the eighteenth century, with a clear commitment to the quality of the program as a whole. In particular, you contribute to the bachelor and master programs in engineering/architecture, and of the master after master programs at the Department, in particular the Master of Conservation of Monuments and Sites. You take care to develop a broad perspective, both content- and method-wise. This specifically includes teaching non-European architecture from the past in a global context.
  • You integrate your research within your teaching. You commit yourself to reviewing the existing didactical model critically, to refine and further develop it.
  • You also contribute to the pedagogic project of the Faculty/University through the supervision of master theses and as a supervisor of PhD students.
  • You develop your teaching 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 Faculty and the University.
  • In doing so, you collaborate closely with the other professors of architectural history and heritage conservation, and with the other professors in the Section History, Theory and Criticism of Architecture of the Department of Architecture.

Remark. The bachelor courses on architectural history are also taken up in the bachelor programs of art history and of civil engineering (minor “architecture”) as required courses. 

  • You are prepared to provide scientific, social and internal services, amongst others by maintaining close contact with the international academic community and the related professional domains, and by serving on advisory committees.
  • You are prepared to take up responsibilities in academic management at KU Leuven and you are willing to participate actively in the development of the educational programs in engineering/architecture, on all degree levels.
  • You play an active role in maintaining the profile and furthering the impact of the Department and Faculty as regards students, both new and old, and the broader professional field, amongst others by taking part in public presentations, information days, introductory events.
  • You have a master degree in architectural engineering or architecture, or a master degree in history of art and architecture, history, archaeology, or an equivalent degree, as well as a PhD. The subject of your doctoral thesis was related to the research and educational field described for this vacancy.
  • You can show high-level research experience in the aforementioned field (publications, membership of reputable research programs and institutions, previous research financing).
  • International experience acquired during your academic training and/or international experience with practice, and/or collaboration with practitioners from other disciplines, are considered as an advantage.
  • Experience with teaching students in architecture, architectural or construction engineering, conservation or related fields will also be considered as an advantage. You are ready to help position the program of engineering/architecture and the master after master degrees at the Department within the (inter)national world of architectural education.
  • You possess organisational skills and you adopt a cooperative attitude towards your colleagues. You champion a dynamic department. You are willing to build bridges between practice, education and research on the one hand, and between sections, institutes, organisations and communities on the other. 
  • Proficiency in English is required. 
  • The official language used at KU Leuven is Dutch. If you do not speak Dutch (or do not speak it well) at the start of 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 standard.

We are offering full-time (100%) 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 multidisciplinarily 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.The alma mater of acclaimed scholars such as Erasmus, Andreas Vesalius and Georges Lemaître, KU Leuven has a rich scientific tradition and history. Its internationally renowned research and educational programmes cause it to consistently rank among the best 50 universities worldwide.You will work in Heverlee near 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.In accordance with your curriculum vitae and your scientific seniority, the rank of your appointment will vary. You may either be appointed as assistant professor on the tenure track for a period of 5 years; after this period and a positive evaluation, you will be permanently appointed (or tenured) as an associate professor. Or, if your track record justifies this, you may be appointed as associate professor, professor or full professor for a probation period of 3 years, after which you achieve tenure if the evaluation is positive.


For more information please contact Prof. dr. ir. Bruno De Meulder, tel.: +32 16 32 13 37, mail: or Prof. dr. ir. Krista De Jonge, tel.: +32 16 32 13 79, mail: problems with online applying, please contact
Add to your application 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 list of your publications and if applicable, a portfolio of your past 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 4 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);- your vision on leadership (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.
You can apply for this job no later than March 08, 2021 via the online application tool 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