PhD: Graduate Assistant in Surface layer dynamics in lakes

University of Lausanne

Lausanne, Switzerland 🇨🇭


UNIL is a leading international teaching and research institution, with over 5,000 employees and 17,000 students split between its Dorigny campus, CHUV and Epalinges. As an employer, UNIL encourages excellence, individual recognition and responsibility.


The Institutes of Earth Surface Dynamics (IDYST) of the Faculty of Geosciences and Environment of the University of Lausanne opens a position of Graduate Assistant on “Surface layer dynamics in lakes”

Job information

Expected start date in position : 01.01.2023 / to be agreed

Contract length : 1 year, renewable 2 x 2 years, maximum 5 years

Activity rate : 80%

Workplace : Lausanne Mouline (Geopolis building)

Your responsibilities

This work will focus on characterizing the dynamic of the surface layer of Lake Geneva using existing data (temperatures, surface waves, current, turbulence, meteorological data, see for instance that will be completed by specific measurements to quantify the surface layer dynamics.  The PhD student will extensively use the unique research facility LĂ©XPLORE (See also 360° tour) on Lake Geneva to conduct his/her research. The PhD student will be co-supervised by Prof. Marie-Elodie Perga (UniL). The PhD student will also actively collaborate with international colleagues and research teams from University of Pennsylvania, (Prof Hugo Ulloa), University of Trento, (Prof Sebastiano Piccolroaz) and University of Southampton (Dr Bieito Fernandez Castro).

Your qualifications

Highly-motivated scientist with a Master’s degree in environmental sciences, applied physics, physical oceanography, applied mathematics, environmental fluid dynamics or any related discipline. A requirement for this position is a good base in applied mathematics, physics and programming. Knowledge in collecting and handling in-situ observations and interest in coupling physical and biogeochemical processes are advantages. Team player and excellent skills in English language and scientific writing are required.

What the position offers you

The PhD student will be hosted at the Institute of Earth surface dynamics, within the faculty of geoscience and environment at the University of Lausanne (UNIL), a vibrant, well-funded institute with a multidisciplinary focus on environmental surface processes in mountain landscapes, covering meteorology and climatology, glaciology, remote-sensing, river geomorphology, pedology and limnology. The FGSE specifically promotes interdisciplinary research and teaching, within and between the social and natural sciences. It is embedded in the broader Lausanne research environment that includes two universities (UNIL, EPFL), and cross-disciplinary, collaborative cutting-edge research programs for lakes (LeXPLORE) and climate actions (CLIMACT).

The PhD student will work in close collaboration with colleagues from both UniL and Eawag. The PhD student will also be affiliated to the Surface Waters – Research & Management department at Eawag and benefit from Eawag research facilities.

We offer a nice working place in a multicultural, diverse and dynamic academic environment. Opportunities for professional training, a lot of activities and other benefits to discover.

Contact for further information

Prof. Damien Bouffard

[email protected]

Your application

Deadline : 30.11.2022

Please, send your full application in PDF including :

  • a cover letter, addressed to Damien Bouffard, explaining the reasons for applying (max. 1 page);
  • a full Curriculum Vitae;
  • an electronic version of a research output (Msc diploma thesis, research report or other scientific publication);
  • a link to own git repository (if available);
  • the names and contact information of one or two referees

Only applications through this website will be taken into account.
We thank you for your understanding.

Additional information

UNIL is committed to equal opportunities and diversity and seeks to promote an equitable representation of men and women among its staff and strongly encourages applications from women.

UNIL supports early career researchers.