PhD Position on biodiversity responses to land-use change in the former Soviet Union

This job offer has expired

    University of Goettingen
    Biological sciencesBiodiversity
    Biological sciencesZoology
    Environmental scienceEcology
    Environmental scienceGlobal change
    First Stage Researcher (R1)
    30/06/2020 23:00 - Europe/Brussels
    Germany › Goettingen



The Conservation Biology department at the University of Göttingen (Germany)

seeks highly qualified and motivated candidates for a

PhD Position on biodiversity responses to land-use change in the former Soviet Union

One PhD position (TV-L 13, 65%) for three years.

Starting date: from 1st October 2020.

The successful applicant will focus on the impacts of land-use change on biodiversity across the former Soviet Union. The break-up of the Soviet Union in 1991 resulted in major institutional and socio-economic changes, leading to widespread rural outmigration and land abandonment that provided more space for wildlife. At the same time, poaching increased and new threats to biodiversity emerged. Overall, the consequences of the break-up of the Soviet Union for biodiversity are far from fully understood.

The aims of the PhD project are

  • To harness and analyze time series of animal abundance (i.e., birds and mammals) to understand population trends across the former Soviet Union in relation to land-use changes,
  • To identify legacies of post-Soviet changes in grazing and wildfire patterns on biodiversity,
  • To explore rewilding opportunities due to post-Soviet land-use trends,
  • To identify gaps in protected area networks and to develop conservation strategies to better protect biodiversity.

The applicant will join the Conservation Biology department (new head from 01. August 2020: Prof. Johannes Kamp). We are interested in biodiversity trends at regional and global scales, identify drivers of species declines and develop solutions to halt species loss. We work at the nexus of population biology, biodiversity monitoring and landscape ecology, on a wide range of species, from large carnivores to birds and insects. The working language of the group is English.

The PhD student will collaborate closely with the Conservation Biogeography Lab at Humboldt University Berlin (Prof. Tobias Kuemmerle, https://hu.berlin/biogeo). This will include the opportunity to spend some time in Prof. Kuemmerle’s lab in Berlin.

We offer a position in an international, young and dynamic team. Payment will be according to EGr. 13 TV-L (65% position), i.e., an annual gross salary of about 35,000-37,000 EUR, depending on previous research experience. Employment at the University of Goettingen offers all benefits of the German public service, including health insurance. Funding for participation in scientific conferences and relevant workshops is available.

The Georg-August-University Göttingen, founded in 1737, is one of Germany’s oldest universities with more than 45 nobel prize winners. It is a key hub of environmental research in Germany, with a large number of connected departments in the ecological, forestry and agricultural sciences, an international reputation and great networking opportunities. Göttingen is a medium-sized city in the centre of Germany with a high living quality and a young population. The University of Göttingen is an equal opportunities employer and places particular emphasis on fostering career opportunities for women. Qualified women are therefore strongly encouraged to apply in fields in which they are underrepresented. The university has committed itself to being a family-friendly institution and supports their employees in balancing work and family life. The mission of the University is to employ a greater number of severely disabled persons. Applications from severely disabled persons with equivalent qualifications will be given preference.


More Information




Selection process


Applicants should include (1) a letter of motivation, (2) a full CV, (3) a writing example (e.g., a publication, a part of a thesis), and (4) contact details for two references. Please send the application electronically in a single PDF file attached to an e-mail with the subject line “PhD position” to Ms. Andrea Lambertz (alamber@gwdg.de).

Application deadline: 30 June 2020

For further information please contact Johannes Kamp, currently at the University of Münster (johannes.kamp@uni-muenster.de). Website: https://www.uni-muenster.de/Oekosystemforschung/en/mitarbeiter/kamp.html

Additional comments

Please refer to https://www.uni-goettingen.de/de/305402.html?cid=14958 where you find the legally binding version of the job announcement.

Offer Requirements

    Other: Master Degree or equivalent


We seek a candidate with an above-average MSc (or equivalent degree) in Ecology, Wildlife Biology, Conservation Science, Environmental Science or a related field. We expect experience and a strong interest in ecology and conservation biology. An additional background in land-use science is an advantage. Required methodological skills include a sound background in geographic information systems and (spatial) statistics, preferentially in R. Experience in other scripting languages (e.g., Python) is a plus. We also expect excellent command of the English language, good communication skills, and willingness to work in international research teams. Russian language skills are highly welcome.

Work location(s)
1 position(s) available at
University of Goettingen
Bürgerstr. 50

EURAXESS offer ID: 520799


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