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Exploring patterns and processes in shallow lakes greenhouse gas dynamics in response to eutrophication and climate change

Exploring patterns and processes in shallow lakes greenhouse gas dynamics in response to eutrophication and climate change

The successful applicant will join a new DFF funded project (GreenLakes) which aims to establish how greenhouse gas (GHG) dynamics in shallow lakes and the underlying processes driving them are altered by the combination of climate warming and nutrient enrichment.

Research area and project description:

Small shallow lakes are the most abundant freshwater body on the planet and increasingly recognised as disproportionately important but inadequately studied sources of Greenhouse gases. The successful applicant will join a new DFF funded project (GreenLakes) which aims to establish how greenhouse gas (GHG) dynamics in shallow lakes and the underlying processes driving them are altered by the combination of climate warming and nutrient enrichment. The project will rely on innovations in gas sensors to measure the fluxes of methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2) at high spatial and temporal resolution. Such high frequency measurement is required to accurately characterise emissions, in particular CH4 ebullition (bubble release) from the sediment. Specifically, the selected candidate will determine how eutrophication interacts with warming to alter the production and consumption of CH4 and nitrous oxide (N2O) in different lake habitats (sediment, plant surfaces and water column) and determine the structure, abundance and activity of the underlying microbial communities.  To do this, the study will use a globally unique, climate change mesocosm facility in combination with high-resolution studies on lakes of contrasting ecological status.

The project has collaborative partners in the Netherland (Annelies Veraart – Radboud University) assisting with the microbiological aspects of the work and also in Germany (Daniel Græber, UFZ) who is working on the dissolved organic matter (DOM) analysis in the project. This provides the applicant with opportunities to develop their expertise through international research stays and good collaboration. The project is also a part of The Aarhus University Centre for Water Technology (WATEC – http://watec.au.dk/), which will also provide the student with excellent disciplinary support and opportunities to develop their own network.

Outcomes are expected to result in improved knowledge of the patterns of processes of shallow lake GHG emissions which will pave the way for natural resource management strategies which account for climate change impacts and feedbacks and ultimately help to manage natural resources so as to minimise positive feedbacks to climate change from fresh waters.

Qualifications and specific competences:

Applicants to the PhD position must have a relevant Master’s degree in Ecology, Biology or related field, with experience in either freshwater ecology, biogeochemistry, or other relevant disciplines. The student will be expected to work with sensor systems assembled in house and with the large amounts of data generated by high frequency measurements. Therefore, an interest in learning basic electronics and data management will be beneficial. The project will involve significant amounts of field and lab work, so proven abilities in this area are beneficial.

Place of employment and place of work:

The successful candidate will be employed by Aarhus University, and will initially be based at the Department of Bioscience, Lake Ecology section, Vejlsøvej 25, DK-8600 Silkeborg, Denmark, although this section will move to the main campus in Aarhus during the course of the candidate’s 3-year study period.

Contacts:

Applicants seeking further information are invited to contact:

Senior Researcher Thomas Davidson, thd@bios.au.dk, Phone +45 87158743

Application procedures, Before you apply

Information and attachments:
Please be aware that you must have all relevant appendices, attachments, addresses for referees, etc. ready when you apply, as the entire application must be uploaded to the system in one go.

Documentation of language skills:

The English language requirement at GSST is comparable to an “English B level” in the Danish upper secondary school (“gymnasium”).

English language qualifications comparable to an “English B level” are documented by one of the following tests:

  • TOEFL test, minimum score: 560 (paper-based test) or 83 (internet-based test). The paper-based test must have a “total score”. From the August 2019 call, GSST will no longer accept the paper-based test.
    Aarhus University does not accept the TOEFL ITP test. Aarhus University’s TOEFL code is 8935. Ask the test centre to send your test results to Aarhus University, in order to enable verification of your test results.
  • IELTS (academic) test, minimum average score: 6.5 points
  • Cambridge English Language Assessment:
    Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency (CPE)
    Cambridge English: Certificate of Advanced English with grade A,B or C (CAE)
    Cambridge English: First Certificate  with grade A (FCE)

When to take the test and how to upload the documentation:
The test result must not be more than two years old at the time of application.

The English language test should be taken before applying for admission and uploaded under “language skills documentation” in the online application form.

It is possible to apply for admission before you have taken the test. In this case documentation stating that you have signed up for a test (please state expected submission date) must be uploaded. If the test result is not part of the original application the test result is to be sent to sphd@psys.au.dk no later than one month after the application deadline.

The following applicants are exempted from documenting their English qualifications/taking a test:

  • Applicants with citizenship from the following countries: Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, the United States, or one of the Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway or Sweden).
  • Applicants with a Bachelor’s or Master’s programme completed in Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, or the United States. In this case, please upload your Bachelor’s or Master’s diploma under the section ”Language skills documentation”.
  • Applicants with a Bachelor’s or Master’s programme completed at a Danish university for which the requirement was English B level at the time of admission. In this case, please upload your Bachelor’s or Master’s diploma under the section ”Language skills documentation”.

The programme committee may request further information or invite the applicant to attend an interview.

Application procedures, How to apply:

1)      Find the application form:
Go to www.phd.scitech.au.dk/for-applicants/apply-here – Note, the online application system opens on 1 September 2019.
Choose November 2019 Call with deadline 1 November 2019 at noon (11.59 AM CET).
You will be directed to the call, and must choose the programme ‘Bioscience’.

2)      Fill in the following information:

  • Personal information
  • Academic background
  • Admission
  • Financing (if any)
  • Study: In the dropdown menu you must choose the project: “Exploring patterns and processes in shallow lakes greenhouse gas dynamics in response to eutrophication and climate change”
  • Source (how you found out about the call)

Next to some of the information fields you will find a number. Click on the number to get further directions on how to fill in the information field/what information is needed.

3)      Application attachments:
Please be aware that you cannot submit the application if one or several of these documents have not been uploaded.

If you wish to upload more than one document under each section, you must scan/merge all documents into one large PDF file and upload this. Please note that we reserve the right to remove scientific papers, large reports, theses and the like. Instead you can indicate a URL where the information is available.

All information in the application must be in English or Danish, preferably English.

As a minimum all applications must include (pdf-files only, max. 20 MB, no zip):

  • One reference (template for references)
  • Curriculum vitae,
  • Motivation (max. 1 page)
  • Transcripts, grade point averages (weighted and unweighted), and diploma(s) for both Bachelor’s and Master’s degree
  • Project description (½-4 pages). For technical reasons, you must upload a project description. When – as here – you apply for a specific project, please simply copy the project description above, and upload it as a PDF in the application. If you wish to, you can indicate an URL where further information can be found. Please note that we reserve the right to remove scientific papers, large reports, theses and the like.
  • Documentation of language skills if required.

After submission of the application, you will receive a confirmation e-mail with an application ID, you should use for reference if needed.

GSST reserves the right to verify the authenticity of your educational diploma and transcripts:

  • Request additional information to verify an application.
  • Reject the application if it is proven, or if the University has reasonable belief, that the information provided is false or if the applicant refuses to provide the requested information, whether or not an offer has already been made. 
  • For further information on applying, assessment procedures, etc. please see the GSST Application Guide.  

Please note:

  • The programme committee may request further information or invite the applicant to attend an interview.

All interested candidates are encouraged to apply, regardless of their personal background.