PhD position - riverine nitrogen cycling

The Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht, near Hamburg, and in Teltow, near Berlin, conducts materials and coastal research. You can find more information at

In a close co-operation, the Umweltforschungszentrum Leipzig (UFZ) and the Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht link their water research on the topic “Reactive Nitrogen in watersheds – sources, cycling and sinks from catchments to coasts”. As part of this co-operation, the Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht, Department for Biogeochemistry in coastal seas, invites applications for a
PhD position (m/f) with the topic “N and O isotopic composition of nitrogen compounds in dissolved and particulate phases”.

The position is limited for three years (starting as soon as possible).

In co-operation with the UFZ, the successful candidate will work on a synthesis towards a process based quantification of N-sources, turnover and transport on reach and watershed scales. Candidates can make use of outstanding analytical capacities and infrastructures at both centres including the TERENO monitoring network in the Bode River (Germany), container based mesocosm experimental facilities, modern analytical laboratories and computational capacities. The project offers the opportunity to interact with other researchers and will be carried out in close cooperation between both centres.

The announced PhD project focuses on the assessment of nitrogen isotope source signatures and their biological alteration within the catchment. The work will be carried out in close co-operation with the Helmholtz Young Investigators Group “Sources, sinks and internal cycling of nitrogen in coastal waters”. Candidates should hold a Masters or Diploma degree in Geosciences, biology or a related field, and should have a core qualification in aquatic ecology, hydrology or geomicrobiology. A strong analytical background is required, experience with mass spectrometry or stable isotope work is beneficial. A driver´s license is required. Interested candidates should be highly motivated, organized, and willing to work in a young, interdisciplinary research team.

We offer an appropriate salary related to TV-AVH as well as the usual public sector social benefits. The advancement of equality at the Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht goes without saying; in particular, we are striving to increase the percentage of women in the science sector. Severely disabled persons with equal qualifications will be considered preferentially within the framework of legal requirements.

For further information regarding this position, please contact Dr. Kirstin Daehnke (

Please send your application indicating job offer code No. 2013/KB 1 to Max-Planck-Straße 1, 21502 Geesthacht, Germany, or preferably to the email-address: Please include your CV, a short description of your scientific expertise, publication list, and names and addresses of two references. Closing date for application is February 18th, 2013.

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