The Center for Adaptive Rationality (ARC) at the Max Planck Institute for
Human Development, Berlin, Germany, under the direction of Prof. Dr. Ralph
Hertwig, seeks applicants for 2 Predoctoral Position on Human Foraging (Ice
fishing) (E 13 TVöD, 70 % ; 39 hours/week).
Preferred starting date is 1 December 2021 for 3 years. Closing date for
applications: 8 August 2021.
Job description : Technological developments are opening up new frontiers
on individual and collective decision making. Improved tracking technology
(e.g., GPS, Galileo, proximity sensing), allow to follow organisms over long
periods of time, with ever increasing accuracy. Organism-borne videos provide
detailed insights in the (visual) information that organisms have access to.
And organism-attached remote sensing allow monitoring of physiological
variables (e.g., heart rate) to understand how organisms cope with
environmental challenges. We are entering the ‘golden age of bio-logging'.
Despite revolutionizing animal ecology, relatively few studies in human
ecology have taken such a data-driven approach.
This project aims to do exactly this, investigating human foraging ecology.
This work is part of a DFG funded research project. The work combines
statistical analyses of a large-scale database spanning 50 years on individual
and collective catch data, with empirical fieldwork studying individual and
collective foraging of ice fishers in Finland. For the fieldwork, up to 100
ice fishers will be simultaneously and repeatedly equipped with (i) tracking
devices to record high-resolution spatial movement behaviour of ice fishers,
(ii) head cameras to capture continuous information on the search behaviour
and foraging success, and (iii) heart rate monitor to study physiology. This
novel study system and approach will provide an unprecedented amount of
spatio-temporal data on human foragers across natural environments, to uncover
new insights in behavioural and physiological mechanisms underlying individual
and cooperative human foraging.
Requirements: Applicants should hold, or anticipate receiving very soon as
shown in supporting documents, a master's degree, diploma or equivalent in
Psychology, Biology, or related natural sciences and ideally have proven
skills/background in the following topics:
working with spatio-temporal data, visual data, and/or physiological data
conducting human individual and/or collective behavior experiments
experience in working in the field under challenging conditions
statistical data analysis of interdependent data (mixed model approaches,
conventional statistics, Bayesian statistics)
programming skills (for example in MATLAB, Python, R)
experience in working in collaborative research activities including
command of the Finnish language is a bonus
The Max Planck Institute for Human Development offers an excellent
infrastructure including support staff and equipment for conducting
experiments and fieldwork. It provides an international research environment,
with English being the working language of the Center for Adaptive
The Max Planck Society strives for gender and diversity equality. We welcome
applications from all backgrounds. Furthermore, the Max Planck Society is
committed to increasing the number of individuals with disabilities in its
workforce and therefore encourages applications from such qualified
The Doctoral Positions are for three years. To apply, please send your
application (consisting of a cover letter describing your research interests,
a CV, one publication (or another sample of writing), and the contact
details of two references) as a SINGLE PDF file to Ralf Kurvers, MPI for
Human Development, Lentzeallee 94, 14195 Berlin (arc-applications@mpib-
berlin.mpg.de). Please submit your application without a photo. Applications
must be submitted by 8 August 2021 to ensure consideration. However, review of
applications will continue until the position is filled. For more information
about the position, please contact Dr. Ralf Kurvers (kurvers@mpib-
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