PhD Position (m/f/x) Subject: Matter turnover in the course of microbial succession

The Helmholtz-Centre for Environmental Research GmbH – UFZ


October 11, 2021


The Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ) with its 1,100 employees has gained an excellent reputation as an international competence centre for environmental sciences. We are part of the largest scientific organisation in Germany, the Helmholtz association. Our mission: Our research seeks to find a balance between social development and the long-term protection of our natural resources.

In the framework of the project "Heat dissipation and matter turnover in the course of microbial succession constrained by substrate and oxygen availability " (MICROHEAT) funded by the DFG, the Department of Soil Ecology offers a PhD position with an intended starting date of November 2021 for a duration of three years. As the project is part of the DFG priority program 2322 'SoilSystems' (https: // www., close collaboration with the other projects of this priority program is essential.

PhD Position (m/f/x) Subject: Matter turnover in the course of microbial


Subject: PhD Position (m/f/x) Subject: Matter turnover in the course of

microbial succession

Earliest project start date: Nov. 1st, 2021, working time: 65%, limited for 3 years

Your tasks:

Your tasks in this project will be to link carbon and energy use efficiency to microbial growth and to the range of enzyme-mediated reactions related to various stages of substrate decomposition. This will be done by a combination of kinetic and calorespirometric approaches to relate matter and energy losses with 1) changes in dominating microbial populations in soil, 2) microbial functional traits, and 3) turnover time of carbon sources. This work will be conducted in close collaboration with a Postdoc focusing on the impact of oxygen availability and anaerobic microsites on carbon and energy use efficiency.

Your profile:
  • Master degree in soil science, chemistry, biochemistry, biology, environmental sciences or equivalent field
  • Interest in complex and interdisciplinary relationships in soil systems
  • First experience in the areas of calorimetry, respirometry, soil science, as well as environmental microbiology are of advantage
  • Willingness to work in an interdisciplinary and international team
  • Very good English skills
  • Existing scientific writing skills
  • 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 (65%)
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