Ombudsman for PhD students in Delft


During your PhD position you might have some troubles you cannot solve on your own. Job van Luyken is the new Ombudsman of TU Delft. He is specialized in helping PhD candidates and employees who feel like they have been treated unfairly.

Job doesn’t work at the university, he works for the employees at the university. All conversations with Job are confidential. Because of his independency and neutral position, PhD candidates can visit Job for neutral advise, mediation and references. This in contrast to supervisors, mentors and other workers of TU Delft. Want to know more about Job? Read this interview:


Mister van Luyken, could you tell us in a short summary what your work is about?

‘’My goal is to create more understanding between all the parties involved in a project or parties that work together. I am balancing between three points: relationships, decisions and processes. As an ombudsman I make sure that the relationship between parties is okay, but not at the expense of the process and decisions that have to be made during a PhD position. To make this work, I listen, mediate and advise the parties involved. The most important advantage for PhD candidates is that I operate independently.’’

For what kind of problems can PhD candidates contact you?

‘’PhD candidates have different problems. You can visit me if you feel like you are not fairly treated, when your faculty doesn’t meet your expectations or if you do not have a good working relationship with your PhD mentor or supervisor for example. It is also important to mention that I do not only strive to solve problems, but I am also giving my clients tips so that TU Delft can grow as an organisation on the long-term.’’

Why is there a different contact point for PhD candidates and students?

‘’Students and PhD candidates are different. Students are focused on getting the right grades and having a good relationship with their teachers. PhD candidates are employees who are working for their next degree. They need specific help, for example by maintaining or improving the relationship between them and their supervisors.’’

Do you have a tip for the PhD candidates who are working at the university?

‘’Solve your problems immediately, because otherwise your problems will get worse. Ask your supervisor or mentor for help. Are they not able to help you? Then get in contact with me. I operate independently.

How can they get in contact with you?

‘’You can e-mail me, call me or knock on my door. My phone number is 0627024134 and my e-mailadres is j.r.h.m.vanluyken@tudelft.nl. You will find my office at Stevinweg 1, room 5.05.''

Do you want to know more about your network and stakeholders involved during your PhD? Take a look at the You are in the centre diagram.