Monday, November 30, 2009

Open Positions in Freshwater Biodiversity Research

5 PostDoc Positions, 2 PhD Positions, 1 Science Officer Position

BioFresh - Biodiversity of Freshwater Ecosystems: Status, Trends, Pressures, and Conservation Priorities - is a large, integrative EU-funded project. BioFresh aims to build a freshwater biodiversity information platform to bring together, and make publicly available, the vast amount of information on freshwater biodiversity currently scattered among a wide range of databases. BioFresh will provide spatially-explicit information on the status and trends of freshwater biodiversity and its ecosystem services. Using the data to search for past and present impacts of multiple stressors, the project will significantly improve our ability to predict future responses of freshwater biodiversity and its services to climate and socioeconomic pressures. These responses will be investigated at global, continental and local scale with a focus on European biodiversity. The BioFresh project will start on February 1st, 2010, and has a duration of four years (Coordinator: Klement Tockner; contact: tockner(at); freyhof(at)

We are seeking to fill the following research positions within the frame of the EU-project BioFresh (please contact the listed persons below for further details on the specific open position):

I. IGB, Leibniz-Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries, Berlin, Germany (

1 PhD-position - Climate Change on Lake Ecosystems Based on Long-Term Records (contact: tockner(at); freyhof(at)
The focus of the research is on climate change impacts on the thermal regime, biodiversity, and effects on the structure and functioning of plankton communities in lakes across Europe. Requirements include a master in biology/ecology, statistics, mathematics, or related fields. The ideal candidates would have excellent skills in statistics, handling of large data sets, along with an interest in combining climatologically and ecological research. Start: from Februray 2010. Duration: 36 months.

1 PostDoc-Position - Global Change Impacts on Freshwater Biodiversity (contact: tockner(at); freyhof(at)
The successful candidate will participate in a collaborative project on the effects of climate change on freshwater biodiversity. Requirements are a PhD in biology/ecology, mathematics, bioinformatics or related fields and a strong publication record. The ideal candidate would have excellent skills in statistics, handling of large data sets, stochastic/mechanistic and/or prognostic modelling and an interest in combining climatologically and ecological research to analyse past and future freshwater biodiversity trends. Start: from February 2010. Duration: 48 months.

II. EAWAG, Swiss Federal Institute for Aquatic Science and Technology, Switzerland (

1 PostDoc-Position - Ecosystem Modeling (contact: gessner(at)
We are looking for a motivated modeler with interest and expertise in ecosystem science, global-change research, or related fields. The specific role of is to develop a modeling framework that helps forecast at large spatial scales the consequences of environmental change (including changes in riverine biodiversity) on litter dynamics and decomposition, which is one of the most fundamental ecosystem processes in forest streams. The ideal candidate has a strong background in the development of numerical ecological models, is familiar with spatially explicit models, interest in collaborative research, and a demonstrated ability to produce high-quality publications. Start: from February 2010. Duration: 18 months.

III. UB, University of Barcelona, Spain

1 PostDoc-Position - Effects of Global Change on Freshwater Biodiversity Patterns (contact: bonada(at)
The candidate will develop predictive models on freshwater species distribution related to climate change (climate envelope modeling) and other human-caused disturbances (eutrophication, land-use change, habitat degradation and invasive species). The study will be focused on the analysis of existing datasets and will cover different catchments in the Mediterranean and Temperate climate regions of Europe. Candidates should have a general background in ecology, biogeography and modeling. Experience on the use of predictive models and knowledge of the management of large databases and is highly advantageous. Start: from February 2010. Duration: 24 months.

IV. Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1, Ecologie des Hydrosystèmes Fluviaux, France

1 PhD-position – Groundwater Biodiversity Patterns and Trends (contact : malard(at), christophe.douady(at)
A PhD position is available in the Laboratory of Fluvial Hydrosystem Ecology, Lyon University, France, to identify and analyze distribution patterns of selected groundwater crustaceans (e.g. Asellidae, Proasellus) at a European scale using morphological taxonomy and molecular markers. Applicants should have a graduate degree in ecology and a strong interest in understanding current and historical factors controlling the biodiversity of aquatic ecosystems. Skills in molecular ecology, geographical information systems, and biodiversity data base would be appreciated. Start: from February 2010. Duration: 36 months.

V. EDB, University Toulouse 3, France (

1 PostDoc-Position - Determinants of Freshwater Diversity and Impact of Human Disturbance (contact: brosse(at)
This post-doctoral project focuses on the spatial distribution and the determinants of biodiversity of freshwater fish species. The main ecological hypotheses currently under consideration for explaining large scale diversity patterns will be tested using a global database on fish occurrences at the river basin scale. Both taxonomic and functional approaches will be considered. The post-doctoral candidate should have a good background in macroecology, community ecology, functional traits and ecological statistics. Modelling skills and GIS competences will be greatly appreciated. The candidate will also contribute to the database development and to the supervision of master and PhD students on related subjects. Start: from February 2011. Duration: 24 months.

VI. Museum of Natural History in Paris, France

1 PostDoc-Position – Freshwater Macroecology (contact: oberdorf(at)
We are seeking a scientist with a strong background in community ecology and ecological modeling. Strong preference will be given to candidates with some research experience at the interface between hydrology, climatology and ecology. The candidate should be interested in working on research questions related to how global changes in environment and climate may impact multi-scale patterns (from local to global) of freshwater diversity (species richness or life-history traits) using vast quantitative databases on species distribution in association with climatologic, hydrologic and ecological information. Start: from February 2010. Duration: 24 months.

VII. Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, Belgium

1 Science Officer – Establishing a web portal that will provide free and open access to relevant data sources and bioinformatics tools will be developed (contact: hendrik.segers(at)natural
BioFresh seeks an enthusiastic scientist to coordinate the construction of a web-based freshwater biodiversity data portal that will provide access to databases holding diverse information on freshwater biodiversity from a local to a global scale. The science officer will be offered a position equivalent to Data Acquisitions Manager in the Belgian Biodiversity Platform, taking into account the specific tasks and responsibilities connected to the BioFresh project.
The successful candidates will be confided the following tasks (i) network with partners involved in the scientific and outreach tasks of the project, to maximize the relevance of the portal to users, (ii) In collaboration with Biofresh partners, organize and expand the scientific and user network of BioFresh, (iii) prospect for, and engage freshwater biodiversity data custodians and related metadata, (iv) liase between scientists and IT specialists during the development of client-oriented databases, (v) support the development of the BioFresh portal, (vi) promote and represent Biofresh at national and international meetings. Start: from February 2010. Duration: 48 months.

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