Working at Nikhef

At Nikhef, it’s all about scientific research. The physicists at Nikhef perform research into the building blocks of matter and the foundations of space and time.

Nikhef offers fascinating scientific and technical work among passionate people and cutting-edge technology.

In return, Nikhef demands a lot from its personnel. Everyone is expected to be optimally dedicated and flexible. Of course, this is reflected in the terms of employment.

The organisation

Working at Nikhef means working in an open, colourful organization with an international focus and a strong dedication to technology. 175 physicists and 75 engineers and technicians work at Nikhef. The atmosphere is informal and no-nonsense.

Every day, the scientists and technicians shape the Dutch participation in international particle and astroparticle physics experiments. Nikhef actively participates in major international experiments.

At CERN (Geneva), Nikhef participates in research programmes aimed at understanding the quark-gluon plasma (right after the Big Bang), anti-matter, and the properties of the recently discovered Higgs particle. Other experiments in which Nikhef participates are dedicated to the search for gravitational waves and their properties, using a large-scale interferometer in Pisa; research into the nature and origins of neutrinos, using a deep-sea telescope in the Mediterranean Sea; and the search for the unknown ‘dark matter’ in a subterranean laboratory in Gran Sasso, Italy.

Furthermore, Nikhef scientists and technicians are at the forefront in initiating and developing future scientific experiments that are meant to deepen the understanding of nature at the most fundamental level.

The facilitate this research, advanced technologies are used, which are partly developed in-house. Work on the instrumentation of experiments is done in advanced workshops (mechanics and electronics). Modern equipment, diverse laboratories and cleanrooms are available. The development of software is also done in-house. Finally, Nikhef has its own state-of-the-art data centre for both internal and external users.

The compact support staff is characterized by its short lines of communication with scientists and technicians, as well as by its service-oriented attitude.

Are you interested in working at Nikhef? Check out our vacancies or send an open application. Alternatively, you can contact the personnel department by email.


Curious to find out where Nikhef PhDs found themselves after Nikhef? Read the interviews with Nikhef alumni.
Lucie de Nooij
Serena Oggero
Sander Mooij
Zdenko van Kesteren