• Interviews started
  • Closing date: 30 November 2021


The mission of The Ocean Cleanup is to develop advanced technology to rid the world’s oceans of plastic. To do so, we need to design, develop, and deploy offshore cleanup systems that extract plastic from our oceans. You will be responsible for the concept development and related research within the R&D Team to build knowledge and deliver high-quality concept designs. We have a small R&D team, which is supported by our engineering team and by 3rd parties. Working closely with our engineering team to test and analyze concept ideas is an important part of this position.

You will succeed when you deliver innovative concept designs that push the boundaries of our technology after developing the required knowledge within a short period of time. 

"The Ocean Cleanup is a technology-driven project, aiming to clean the world’s oceans from plastics by developing innovative technology. We are looking for a person who can build knowledge to improve our technology in a quick and clever way. Someone with a broad view on design and engineering, an interest in new ideas, and a good sense of humor will perfectly fit our team. Join our R&D group to generate those smart ideas and get the oceans clean as quickly as possible!” - Arjen Tjallema, Technology Manager


Responsible for knowledge building and delivering high-quality concept designs for ocean cleaning systems. Other responsibilities include:

  • Performing high-level calculations/simulations to understand basic principles of concept designs and to quickly assess ideas before handing them over to engineering
  • Perform optimization studies to get to the best performing system design: bring a concept design from the early concept phase to maturity, meeting performance criteria and scale-up requirements
  • Manage and/or execute the conception process from ideation to completion of basic engineering
  • Ensuring tight and smooth cooperation between R&D and engineering groups
  • Preparing and monitoring work scopes for testing and assessment of concept designs and answering research questions. Work scopes include (hydrodynamic) analyses, lab tests, and field tests (in a broad sense)
  • Keeping a record of developing knowledge within our project while defining knowledge gaps. Prioritizing and providing scopes to the engineering team or third parties to fill those knowledge gaps
  • Feeding newly developed knowledge back into the concept development


  • Master's degree in engineering, preferably marine/offshore/dredging engineering (or comparable working experience in combination with another engineering master's degree)
  • At least three years of relevant work experience in technology development and/or a research role within the maritime/offshore sector, preferably in an innovative environment
  • Experienced with hydrodynamic (ocean) engineering
  • Knowledge of oceanography in general and ocean waves, more specifically
  • Ability to clearly present and explain results of complex research to engineers and other stakeholders
  • Ability to quickly build an understanding of complicated technical subjects where knowledge is limited (both internally and externally)
  • Has the capacity to pay attention to detail while keeping the broader picture in mind
  • Fluent in English


  • Able to quickly get to the essence of a technical challenge and investigate the most relevant/important aspects to help direct towards a solution
  • Performs well in a fast-paced and challenging environment
  • Curious, creative, and determined to deliver
  • Flexible team player
  • Strong communication skills
  • Intrinsic motivation to work on our ambitious and meaningful goal

Please note: because we are a non-profit, our salaries reflect that of an organization fully reliant on donations rather than that of a commercial entity.

Curious to hear how it is to work at The Ocean Cleanup? Listen to our team members explain their work in our podcast.

Starting from:
Work permit needed:
European Union

Interviews have started, but please feel free to apply, as we might consider new applications.