The UFZ has a strong commitment to diversity and actively supports equal opportunities for all employees regardless of their origin, religion, ideology, disability, age or sexual identity. We look forward to applications from people who are open-minded and enjoy working in diverse teams.

Your contact for any questions you may have about the job:

Dr. Marie Muehe

Please submit your application via our online portal with your cover letter, CV (please omit your photo, age, or marital status) and relevant attachments.

Closing date for applications:

Place of work: Leipzig

More information about jobs at the UFZ:

Helmholtz-Zentrum für Umweltforschung GmbH - UFZ
Permoserstraße 15
04318 Leipzig, Germany

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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.

The research group Plant Biogeochemistry at the Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ) in Leipzig, Germany, is looking to fill a position quickly with a motivated

Doctoral researcher (f/m/x); Biogeochemical Processes in the Root-Soil System

Subject: Climate impacts on biogeochemical processes in the rhizosphere of phytoremediating plants

Working time: 65% (25.35 hours per week), limited to 4 years

Your tasks:

Two of the greatest threats to soil health are a changing climate and increasing levels of metal contaminants. A fundamental knowledge gap exists as to how climate affects the availability of metals in root-soil systems and whether this could improve the remediation of contaminated soils by plants. In this project, we will elucidate how different climate scenarios impact the mobility of metals in the rhizospheres of metal-hyperaccumulating versus non-accumulating plants and how that translates to phytoremediation effectiveness.
The PhD student will perform greenhouse and field studies to analyze the response of (1) the root system (metal visualization, RNA sequencing, metabolomics), (2) the rhizosphere microbiome (culturing, DNA/RNA omics), and (3) soil geochemistry (extractions, synchrotron-based X-ray absorption spectroscopy). You will perform field work at the experimental research station Bad Lauchstädt, and will work closely together with the Center for Applied Geoscience at the University of Tübingen.
We offer an international and dynamic work environment within the newly established research group Plant Biogeochemistry at the Department of Environmental Microbiology at the UFZ. The PhD candidate will be integrated into the UFZ graduate school HIGRADE.

Please submit your application with a cover and motivation letter, CV and copies of your certificates, and contact details of 2 referees.

Your profile:

  • Strong background in Biogeochemistry and/or Environmental Microbiology/Microbial Ecology
  • Have a relevant Master or equivalent degree
  • Interest and high motivation for interdisciplinary research focusing on rhizospheres
  • Ability to work independently and in a team
  • Excellent management and communication skills
  • Sound computer and language (English) skills
  • Field work experience is highly beneficial

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%)