PhD student in interactions between plant and soil microbiome in future forests 100% (f/m/d)

Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research
January 01, 2024
Offerd Salary:Negotiation
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Contract Type:Other
Working Time:Negotigation
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Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL

The Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL is part of the ETH Domain. Approximately 600 people work on the sustainable use and protection of the environment and on the handling of natural hazards.

The Forest Resources and Management research unit assesses conditions and changes in forests and works on solutions for the efficient provisioning of ecosystem services. The Plant Regeneration Ecology group studies tree regeneration and its limitations in a future world. In the frame of the WSL Polytunnel Greenhouse Experiment, the research group offers a 4-year position starting 1st March 2024 or soon after as a

PhD student in interactions between plant and soil microbiome in future forests 100% (f/m/d)

You will study how soil and foliar microbiomes impact the growth and physiology of future tree species in a warmer and dryer world. You will work in three long-term in situ climate manipulation experiments where seedlings of six tree species with contrasting co-evolutionary history have grown for three years either under current or future (warmer; warmer & drier) climatic conditions. Focusing on bacteria, archaea, and fungi, you will assess the foliar and soil microbiome of each tree species. You will isolate, sequence, and compare the genomes of microbes of the plants and in the soil indicative of positive and negative plant responses to climate change. You will also link microbiome community structure and function to seedling growth and net ecosystem CO2 fluxes to assess identify precise microbiome features and pathways affecting individual seedling performance all the way up to ecosystem-scale carbon balance.

We are looking for a highly motivated student who is passionate about plant- microbe interactions. She/he holds a master's degree with training in microbiology, ecology, or plant science. Experience and enthusiasm for field and lab work as well as statistical analyses is desired. The successful candidate should be fluent in English, have excellent written and oral communication skills and can work both independently and in a team. French or German knowledge are not necessary but can be helpful. A potential candidate has to have a valid driving license. The PhD thesis will be supervised by PD Dr. Anita Risch (Plant-Animal Interactions group, WSL), Dr. Barbara Moser (Plant Regeneration Ecology group, WSL), Prof. Dr. Mark Anthony (University of Vienna, Austria), and PD Dr. Monika Schmoll (University of Vienna, Austria). The workplace will be mainly at WSL, Birmensdorf, Switzerland, with extensive visits to the University of Vienna for lab work and data analyses. Hence, a potential candidate should be mobile and excited about working in different environments.

Applications, including a CV, motivation letter, a summary of past relevant accomplishments, and the names and contact details of two referees should be sent to Beatrice Lamprecht, Human Resources WSL, by uploading the requested documents through the WSL webpage. Applications via email will not be considered. The position remains open until filled. Barbara Moser, barbara.moser(at), will be happy to answer any questions or offer further information. The WSL strives to increase the proportion of women in its employment, which is why qualified women are particularly called upon to apply for this position.

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