PhD Position: Winter diatom blooms and their effects on lake ecosystems

Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ)

Magdeburg, , DE

Your tasks:

Ecologists have traditionally thought that lakes are biologically dormant in winter, but recent developments have shown that they’re not. Algae can form large blooms, but we know little about them because monitoring campaigns typically skip the winter.

Your job will be to investigate the causes and consequences of diatom blooms that occur in late winter in a certain class of lakes. You will analyze long-term data from a number of Germany’s best studied lakes and reservoirs, and perform field research over one season. Using this knowledge, you will develop and apply an ecological model to simulate the winter dynamics in some of these lakes. Ultimately, your work will help scientists understand how climate warming, which strongly affects winter, will influence lake ecology. You will have the possibility to be part of the UFZ’s graduate school TRACER, which provides opportunities for scientific courses, career development, international travel, and networking. The position will be based in the department of lake research at the UFZ’s campus in Magdeburg, Germany.

Your profile:

  • Master’s degree or equivalent in limnology, biology, environmental science, mathematics, or a related field
  • Knowledge of aquatic ecosystems and biogeochemistry
  • Strong numerical and data analysis skills
  • Knowledge of scripting languages like R, Python, or Matlab is an advantage
  • Experience in statistical modelling and time-series analysis is an advantage
  • Experience in process-based modelling is an advantage
  • Proficiency in English
  • Ability to work in an interdisciplinary team and willingness to collaborate with international partners

We offer:

  • Top level interdisciplinary research at a research centre which enjoys an excellent reputation within Germany as well as internationally
  • Excellent technical facilities
  • Work in inter-disciplinary and multinational teams
  • Excellent links to national and international research networks
  • Support and optimal training courses by our graduate school (HIGRADE)
  • Remuneration in accordance with the TVöD public-sector pay grade 13 (75%)





IHE Delft Institute for Water Education - MSc in Water and Sustainable Development