February 2014
Message 39

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[Met-jobs] PhD position in statistical modeling of ocean plankton biogeography and biodiversity

From "Wagenbach Bianca Elisabeth" <>
To "" <>
Date Wed, 19 Feb 2014 13:50:13 +0000

The Environmental Physics Group at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology 
Zurich (ETH Zurich) and the Landscape Dynamics Group of the Swiss Federal 
Research Institute WSL are offering a joint

PhD position in statistical modeling of ocean plankton biogeography and 

funded by ETH Zurich through the ETH Grants program.

The overarching goal of the PhD project is to understand and quantify the link 
between global phytoplankton biogeography and diversity patterns and ecosystem 
services such as ocean productivity and the global biogeochemical cycling of 
carbon in the open ocean. The successful candidate will analyze global marine 
phytoplankton observations and develop statistical models to simulate their 
diversity and distribution patterns and compare these to data sets of ecosystem 
services such primary and export production. The PhD student will then combine 
these results with trait information to understand the links between different 
forms of diversity and productivity. A key motivation for this project is the 
determination of the optimal level of biological complexity needed in global 
marine lower trophic level ecosystem models to accurately represent all major 
biogeochemical functions.

The PhD student will be supervised jointly by Prof. Nicolas Gruber, Dr. Meike 
Vogt from ETH Zurich and Dr. Niklaus E. Zimmermann from WSL. The candidate is 
expected to collaborate closely with an interdisciplinary research team, and 
take an active role in the development of novel data and modeling techniques. 
The research project will include two extended research visits to DTU Aqua, 
Denmark and Michigan State University, USA. The expected starting date of the 
two PhD positions is spring 2014, for a duration of 36 months.

Candidate requirements

The desired qualifications for the PhD candidates are:
- Master degree in biology, ecology, marine and/or climate sciences, physics, 
statistics, computational sciences or a closely related discipline.
- Experience with a higher programming language (e.g., R, Fortran, C, Matlab, 
- Good statistical and mathematical skills and interest in environmental 
- Fluency in English and good communication skills.
- Interest in biological oceanography and ocean biogeochemistry/global 
biogeochemical cycling.
- High degree of motivation and independence and works well in a team 

How to apply

In order to receive full consideration, applications must be submitted online 
before February 28, 2014, but the position stays open until filled. 
Applications should include a CV, a statement of research interest, and the 
names of two academic referees.

To submit your application online, follow this link:

For further information about the position please contact Dr. Meike Vogt 
(<>). See also<>.

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