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PhD position in coral reef biology

Faculty of Science – Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics

PhD position in coral reef biology
Publication date 17 December 2019
Closing date 26 January 2020
Level of education Master's degree
Hours 38 hours per week
Salary indication €2,325 to €2,972 gross per month
Vacancy number 19-864

Do you have an MSc in Marine Biology, Ecology or Environmental Science, and are you interested in how reef-building corals are impacted by climate change? Are you excited to elucidate the mechanisms that enable reef-building corals to cope with environmental extremes and multiple climate change stressors, and do you enjoy both field and laboratory work? We are looking for a PhD student who will conduct research on corals living in extreme/marginal reef environments to better understand the environmental, eco-physiological and biogeochemical mechanisms that promote coral persistence in a changing ocean.

What are you going to do?

You will investigate a new and to date 'unexplored' type of extreme coral habitat in the Dutch Caribbean (i.e. Curaçao). The aim is to conduct field experiments to understand the mechanisms and time scales that promote coral resistance to environmental extremes, including climate change stressors. You will further conduct laboratory work to analyze seawater chemistry and coral physiology. You will use statistical analysis to interpret the data, communicate your results via conference presentations and publications in peer-reviewed journals, and write a high-quality PhD thesis, while closely working with the project team.

You will be expected to:

  • spend significant time in the field (Curaçao);
  • meet regularly with the project team and collaborators to present work in progress and discuss findings;
  • assist with the supervision of BSc and Msc students, if and when requested;
  • assist teaching coral reef courses, if and when required;
  • show good time management, balancing competing demands and multiple deadlines;Be aware of and proactive about the risks associated with working in a marine environment, in tropical locations and in a laboratory, and comply with health and safety regulations.

What do we require?

  • MSc in marine biology, ecology or environmental science, or a related discipline;
  • an interest in, and understanding of, how marine organisms adjust their physiology to environmental conditions, especially in the context of climate change;
  • experience with marine fieldwork, preferably in tropical locations;
  • SCUBA diving certificate;
  • experience with laboratory work, preferably related to the analysis of animal or plant samples and seawater chemistry;
  • experience with coral husbandry and setting up and running aquarium experiments is desirable but not required;
  • good analytical and statistical skills, including the use of programming languages such as R;
  • excellent English skills  and demonstrated skills in scientific writing (either excellent Master-thesis (in English) or published paper in peer-reviewed scientific journal);
  • an ability to work both independently and as part of a team;
  • driving license.

Our offer

A temporary contract for 38 hours per week, preferably starting in spring 2020, for the duration of 4 years (initial appointment will be for a period of 18 months and after satisfactory evaluation it will be extended for a total duration of 4 years) and should lead to a dissertation (PhD thesis). We will draft an educational plan that includes attendance of courses and (international) meetings.

The salary, depending on relevant experience before the beginning of the employment contract, will be  €2,325 to €2,972 (scale P) gross per month, based on fulltime (38 hours a week), exclusive 8 % holiday allowance and 8.3 end-of-year bonus. A favorable tax agreement, the ‘30% ruling’, may apply to non-Dutch applicants. The Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities is applicable.

Are you curious about our extensive package of secondary employment benefits like our excellent opportunities for study and development? Then find out more about working at the Faculty of Science.

Questions?

Do you have questions about this vacancy? Or do you want to know more about our organisation? Please contact:

About the Faculty of Science

The Faculty of Science has a student body of around 6,500, as well as 1,600 members of staff working in education, research or support services. Researchers and students at the Faculty of Science are fascinated by every aspect of how the world works, be it elementary particles, the birth of the universe or the functioning of the brain.

The Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics (IBED) is one of eight research institutes of the Faculty of Science at the University of Amsterdam. The research at IBED aims to unravel how ecosystems function in all their complexity, and how they change due to natural processes and human activities. At its core lies an integrated systems approach to study biodiversity, ecosystems and the environment. IBED adopts this systems approach to ecosystems, addressing abiotic (soil and water quality) and biotic factors (ecology and evolution of plants, animals, and microorganisms), and the interplay between those. The IBED vision includes research encompassing experimental and theoretical approaches at a wide variety of temporal and spatial scales, i.e. from molecules and microorganisms to patterns and processes occurring at the global scale.

Job application

The UvA is an equal-opportunity employer. We prioritise diversity and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for everyone. We value a spirit of enquiry and perseverance, provide the space to keep asking questions, and promote a culture of curiosity and creativity.

Do you recognize yourself in the job profile? Then we look forward to receiving your CV and cover letter by 26 januari 2020. You may apply online by using the link below. 

Applications should include:

  • a motivation letter and CV, including – if applicable - a list of publications,
  • contact details for two referees.

We anticipate inviting potential candidates for interviews  during the third week of February 2020. LI-DNP

No agencies please

Apply now