PhD Scholarship in Forest Ecology at ETH Zurich

ETH Zurich has an opening PhD position in environmental sciences. Applications will be evaluated immediately.

ETH Zurich is one of the world's leading universities specialising in science and technology. It is renowned for its excellent education, its cutting-edge fundamental research and its efforts to put new knowledge and innovations directly into practice. The Forest Management Group at ETH Zurich is a dynamic and young team that is engaged in teaching and research of silvicultural concepts. We offer world-class facilities in a relaxing work atmosphere in the heart of Zurich with lots of opportunities for national and international collaboration. The Forest Management group seeks to appoint, by 1 September 2019 or by mutual agreement, a new study the drought sensitivity and growth performance of native and non-native tree species along environmental gradients. With the rise in temperature and increase in drought frequency, the use of non-native tree species has been promoted as an adaptive silvicultural strategy for the sustainable provision of forest ecosystem goods and services. However, little is known about the influence of site conditions, species composition, mixture proportion and competition on species-specific drought sensitivity and growth performance.

The PhD student will assess the growth and physiological responses to drought of European larch, silver fir and Douglas fir at different time scales and along environmental gradients based on tree-ring and stable isotope analyses. The PhD student will plan and conduct dendrochronological field and lab work, including the analysis of carbon and oxygen stable isotopes in tree rings. The results of the thesis will be published in international scientific journals and presented at conferences. You will closely collaborate with people at the Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL and with the Forest Ecology Group at ETH Zurich.

The candidate should have an MSc degree in forest sciences, ecology, environmental sciences or a related field. Candidates should have experience or at least a strong interest in doing dendrochronological field and lab work and isotopic analysis. Experience with statistical data analysis in R and knowledge of forest ecology are strong assets. You have excellent written and oral communication skills in English; knowledge of German or French is an asset. Furthermore, you are a team-oriented person with good communication skills and you are used to working independently and in a well-organized way. A driving license is an asset.

Deadline: As soon as possible
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