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Bayi Glacier in Qilian Mountain, China (Credit: Xiaoming Wang, distributed via

Job advertisement Doctoral Research Associate (PhD student)

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European Geosciences Union

Doctoral Research Associate (PhD student)

Doctoral Research Associate (PhD student)


Münster, Germany


Relevant divisions
Biogeosciences (BG)
Soil System Sciences (SSS)

Part time



Required education

Application deadline
23 September 2022

9 September 2022

Job description

The Institute of Landscape Ecology at the University of Münster (WWU), Germany, is seeking to
fill the position of a

Doctoral Research Associate
in Wetland Biogeochemistry
Wissenschaftliche/r Mitarbeiter/in
(salary level TV-L E13, 65%)

We are offering this fixed-term part-time position (65% FTE) within the Emmy Noether research group of Dr P Mueller for 3 years, starting from 1 January 2023.

We are looking for a highly motivated candidate to work with us in the DFG Emmy Noether-project “RELATE – Rhizosphere mediation of biosphere-climate feedbacks”. The main objective of the project is to understand the mechanisms by which plants mediate the effects of climate change on wetland soil carbon storage. The successful candidate will join the recently established Rhizosphere-Biogeochemistry group (of Dr Peter Mueller) within the Institute of Landscape Ecology at WWU. In addition, the successful candidate will have ample opportunities for cross-project collaborations with the University of Hamburg, the GFZ Helmholtz Center Potsdam, and the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center (United States).

Your tasks:
We are looking for an excellent candidate interested in working at the interface between plant ecology, biogeochemistry, and environmental microbiology. The successful candidate will apply a wide array of biogeochemical methods to investigate the consequences of plant-soil microbe interactions for the carbon and greenhouse-gas balance of wetland ecosystems. This will involve the chemical analysis of soil, vegetation and porewater samples, gas flux measurements, planar optode imaging, and isotope tracing experiments. National and international sampling campaigns are part of the project, and longer research stays at the collaborating institutions might become necessary. The candidate will be responsible for publishing the obtained research results in peer-reviewed journals and presenting them at conferences.

Our expectations:
- a Master of Science in Soil Science, Biogeochemistry, Ecosystem Ecology, or another related field
- extensive knowledge of soil science and/or ecosystem carbon cycling
- interest in planning field or lab-based mesocosm experiments
- good communication skills and a strong work ethic
- a valid driving license for traveling to field sites is desirable
- interest in and the ability to solve technical challenges related to instrument maintenance
- experience with gas-flux measurements and/or isotope tracing studies
- advanced computer programming and statistical skills
- fluency in English
- German language skills are not a requirement, but a willingness to learn is desirable

How to apply

We look forward to receiving your application, written in English, combined into a single PDF file, by 23 September 2022 .

Applications should be sent to Dr Beate Keplin at:

Applications should include
(1) a cover letter with a statement of research interests and motivation (max. 1 page),
(2) a CV including details about your research experience and academic education, and
(3) contact details of at least two referees.

As we are offering two PhD positions within the same project, please make sure to include the vacancy reference – PhD in Wetland Biogeochemistry – in your cover letter.

Enquiries can be directed to Dr Peter Müller at: