PhD in Paleolimnology, Bern, Switzerland

A PhD position (3-4 years) is open for an enthusiastic young researcher to work in the Paleolimnology research group at the Oeschger Centre for Climate Change Research (OCCR) and Institute of Geography, University of Bern, Switzerland.


Novel ultrahigh-resolution scanning techniques have opened new avenues for the biogeochemical analysis of varved lake sediments. The Paleolimnology Group at the University of Bern is currently exploring frontiers in hyperspectral imaging techniques which, in combination with µXRF and advanced analytical techniques (HPLC, GC-MS, ICP-MS) provide unprecedented insight into lake sediment archives.

In the PhD project, the candidate will explore the potential of ultrahigh-resolution biogeochemical analyses (µXRF, HPLC and Hyperspectral Imaging) of sediments with biochemical varves to record seasonal climate variability and phenomena at the meteorological time-scale (e.g. extreme weather). The information from the varves will be compared with long instrumental and early instrumental meteorological data. Field sites include lakes in Switzerland and Poland.


The successful candidate holds a Master (MSc) in earth or environmental sciences, physical geography, environmental chemistry or similar. The candidate is motivated to work with advanced laboratory techniques (HPLC, uXRF) and will be trained on innovative Hyperspectral Imaging techniques.

Laboratory experience (with lake sediments) or experience in remote sensing, an interest in climatology/meteorology and statistics is an additional asset. Strong language skills (English) are expected. The candidate will enroll in the Graduate School of Climate Sciences, University of Bern.


The supervisor will be Prof. Dr. Martin Grosjean, Oeschger Centre & Institute of Geography.

The Swiss NSF PhD Fellowship salary is 47,000 to 50,000 CHF, 100%.

The position is available from 1 June 2017 (for 36 months), negotiable.


Review of applications starts on 31 March 2017 and continues until the position is filled.

Applications (ONE pdf with CV, letter of motivation, transcript of MSc with Grades, publication list, addresses of three referees) should be sent to:

Prof. Dr. Martin Grosjean
Oeschger Centre
University of Bern
Falkenplatz 16
3012 Bern
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.Tel: + 41 31 631 31 47

Further information

Please direct all inquiries to Martin Grosjean.