PhD in isotope-based ecohydrology (f/m/x)

Leibniz Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries (IGB)

Berlin, Germany 🇩🇪

The research group “Landscape Ecohydrology” led by Prof Doerthe Tetzlaff in the Department of Ecohydrology & Biogeochemistry of IGB in Berlin (Friedrichshagen) is inviting applications for a PhD position (65%, 3 yrs) starting from 01.05.2023 or soon thereafter. The position is part of the “Leibniz Association” funded project “Isoscale: Stable Isotope and AI supported model development for high frequency, cross scale water partitioning” which aims to achieve a novel integrated, cross-compartmental and cross-scale understanding of the partitioning of incoming precipitation in agricultural systems. You will investigate temporal dynamics and spatial variability in ecosystem evapotranspiration, soil evaporation, plant transpiration, soil water distribution and root water uptake in agricultural systems. We will also use and assess the value of in-situ stable water isotope data to advance and test the capacity of tracer-aided, process-based ecohydrological modelling.

We seek a dynamic, motivated and ambitious young scientist to join an existing interdisciplinary, international science team on Landscape Ecohydrology to apply and further develop tracer-aided ecohydrological modelling in agricultural landscapes. It is expected that the modelling will utilise existing data sets from instrumented research sites near Berlin, Germany. The successful candidate will have experience in the application of numerical models and programming and should also be willing to conduct own field work, for example for model calibration and validation. Expertise in using water isotopes would be advantageous. Access to high-performance computer clusters is available to facilitate the use of “state of the art” research models.

Your tasks

  • Conducting field experiments of ecohydrological investigations for model calibration and validation
  • Processing of existing data
  • Laboratory analysis
  • Data analysis and interpretation
  • Incorporating multiple hydrological data into process-based models
  • Preparation of three manuscripts as first author for submission to high impact journals (a requirement to obtain a PhD)
  • Further result dissemination through presentations at national and international conferences

Your profile

  • Excellent MSc degree in hydrology, environmental sciences or environmental engineering, geoecology, geochemistry, or a related field
  • Experience with isotope tracers
  • Strong programming and numerical skills
  • Experience in the application of numerical models
  • Strong English language skills both in oral and written communication
  • Ability to work in a team environment
  • Driver’s licence (valid in Germany)

Other advantageous attributes might include:

  • Experience of working in interdisciplinary research projects
  • Good German is advantageous but not mandatory

Our offer

Salary is paid according to the German salary scheme for the public sector (65% E13 TVöD Bund). This is a position for doctoral research for 36 months. The IGB is committed to diversity. We welcome every application, regardless of gender and gender identity, origin, nationality, religion, belief, health and physical disabilities, age or sexual orientation.

We foster your career development by providing qualification and manifold training opportunities for early career scientists. We actively support the reconciliation of work and family life. Applicants are treated equally regardless of gender. Qualified women are particularly encouraged to apply. Severely disabled applicants with equal qualification and aptitude will be given preferential consideration.

Are you interested?

We look forward to receiving your application incl. a cover letter, a CV, at least 2 reference letters or contact details for 2 referees by 03.03.2023Please state the job reference number 11/2023 and apply exclusively via our recruitment platform at

Questions can be directed to Professor Dörthe Tetzlaff by e-mail ( It is recommended to check out the group’s webpage:

“Research for the future of our freshwaters” is the mission of the Leibniz Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries (IGB). The IGB is Germany’s largest and one of the leading international research centres for freshwaters. We seek to understand the fundamental processes governing freshwaters and their communities. Our research findings help to tackle global environmental changes and to develop measures for sustainable water management. The IGB is a diverse and inspiring place to work and conduct research. We promote individual development at every career level and stand for lively exchange and cooperation. IGB closely collaborates with numerous national and international universities and other partners in science and society and is a member of the Leibniz Association, which connects 97 independent public research institutes in Germany.





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