Doctoral Student, Hydrological Process as Water Quality Controls and Limits in Peatland Agriculture via EURAXESS

University of Oulu

Oulu, , FI

University of Oulu is an international scientific community, with 15,000 students and approximately 3,000 employees. By combining multidisciplinary research and education, high-level infrastructure and wide cooperation with international research and educational institutes, companies and the public sector it has created a significant research and innovation hub of “Science with an Arctic Attitude”. More information University of Oulu has a wide academic base with 8 faculties and several research institutes.


Water, Energy and Environmental Engineering Research Unit ( research covers a broad area of expertise including hydrology, water resources engineering and various aspects of environmental sciences. Our research unit is a multinational and interdisciplinary group of 50 researchers and doctoral students working in a modern, up-to-date research environment. The unit is a leading hub for understanding complex interactions related to land-water-energy management and finding ways for a more sustainable future. Relevant to the current positions, it has strong groups on northern hydrology, peatland hydrology, hydrosystems engineering, water supply engineering, natural based systems, land use and climate change modelling and assessment.

Work description

We are looking for a Doctoral Student with an interest to understand hydrology, drainage, nutrient processes in soils, nutrient runoff mechanisms and ways to control water quality with technical and agronomical measures. The selected applicant will work in a team with various experts on hydrology, environmental sciences, water quality and geochemistry, greenhouse gas emissions, modelling and water management. 

The work includes studies on hydrological processes using environmental tracers, analysis of water quality data, and testing of different solutions to reduce nutrient leaching and runoff including methods such as ditch level regulation and controlled runoff. The study areas are near Oulu and related to experimental fields with grass cultivation on peat soils operated in collaboration with Natural Resources Institute (Luke).

The position is linked to several on-going and new projects such as Nordic Center of Excellence BIOWATER and a large European Union H2020 project WATERAGRI that has a specific focus on agricultural water management and nutrient recovery from waste streams in small agricultural catchments. The position is linked to tasks related to “hydrology and nutrient leaching from agricultural catchments”.

The specific subject areas of this position are related to research on:

–        Hydrological and water quality monitoring in agricultural fields and catchments

–        Hydrological analysis of snow, soil moisture, water level and runoff using environmental tracers (e.g. stable isotopes)

–        Rainfall-runoff and nutrient leaching modelling, assessment and control

–        Integrated assessment of methods and ways to best limit nutrient leaching in agriculture and field cultivation considering also potential impacts on greenhouse gas emission (with collaborators)


–  MSc in water resources engineering, environmental engineering, geosciences or similar fields with good grades

–  Interest to understand processes and methods to retain water and limit leaching

–  Experience with field work is an advantage

–  Fluency both in oral and written English

–  Ability to work both independently and with different experts and research teams

Assessment of the applicants’ qualifications will be based on the following criteria acknowledging the content of the job: education and previous work experience.

Terms of employment

The duration of the position is 2 years, beginning on September 1, 2020 (or as soon as possible). A six-month trial period will be applied to the position.

The salary is in accordance with the university salary system (for teaching and research personnel) level 2 – 4 of the demand level chart. In addition to the basic salary, supplementary salary will be paid for personal achievement and performance, the sum rising to a maximum of 50 % of the basic salary level for the post. The typical starting salary for a PhD is €2,300 per month.

How to apply

Applications, together with all relevant enclosures, should be submitted using electronic application form by August 9, 2020 at 23:59 (Finnish local time). Top candidates will be invited to an on-site or remote interview. All applicants will be notified when the selection process is completed.

The application should be written in English and include the following documents:

  1. A motivation letter summarizing applicant’s professional experience and expertise and describing why applicant is interested in this position. Also, information on personal research interests, experience and career plans are valuable to provide here (max. 3 pages)
  2. A curriculum vitae (max. 4 pages) in accordance with the guidelines of the Finnish Advisory Board on Research Integrity (TENK), available from
  3. A publication list based on the guidelines of the Academy of Finland
  4. A copy of the applicant’s Master of Science degree diplomas, or, if not available at the time of application, a statement from the applicant and their supervisor(s) regarding the expected completion date
  5. Contact information of two senior/experienced researchers who may be asked to give a statement on the candidate

For further information, please contact:

Assistant Professor Hannu Marttila, hannu.marttila(at)
WE3 Research Unit, Faculty of Technology, University of Oulu




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