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PhD fellow in hydrogeology at the Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management

PhD fellow in hydrogeology at the Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management

The Water Resources research group within the Geology Section at Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management of Faculty of Science at University of Copenhagen invites applications for a PhD scholarship in hydrogeology, for conducting a cross disciplinary study between hydrogeology and biology. The scholarship commences 1 October 2021 or as soon as possible thereafter.

Project description
Low-lying areas, such as stream valleys drained decades ago for land reclamation to facilitate agriculture, are immense sources of CO2 to the atmosphere. They also represent areas of lost nature. Rewetting these areas can reduce CO2 emissions and restore nature, and thereby help mitigate both climate change and the global biodiversity crisis. ‘Rewetting’ could be carried out by elevating the streambed and/or remeandering the stream, thereby raising the water table in the stream valleys. However, during rewetting, the optimal new water table position for reducing net greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions may not be the same as the optimal water table position for restoring biodiversity. Further, changing the hydrology in a stream valley could also have (negative/positive) hydrological effects in the upgradient catchment area to the stream. The project REWET brings hydrogeologists and biologists from University of Copenhagen and University of Southern Denmark together to investigate the rewetting scheme that optimally reduces GHG emissions and increases biodiversity. In REWET, hydrogeological data are to be combined with GHG emissions and biodiversity data to develop methods for rewetting low-lands.

Job description
We are looking for a candidate who can undertake detailed hydrogeological field studies in rewetted stream valleys alongside with catchment scale hydrological numerical modelling. The study comprises three parts: 1) Hydrogeological characterization of several stream valley study sites across Denmark, in particular with respect to the groundwater-surface water interaction and sediment characterization. This part comprises collection and joint interpretation of hydrometric, chemical, and isotopic (δ18O and δD of water) data, potentially aided by reactive transport modelling. 2) Combining the hydrological dataset with GHG emissions and biodiversity data gathered by fellow PhDs and post-docs and other project participants. This part addresses the relations between hydrogeological characteristics, GHG emissions and biodiversity evaluations. 3) Catchment-scale numerical hydrological modeling to investigate how the increased water table in a stream valley will propagate to the upgradient sub-catchments and thus potentially cause rewetting of dried out depressions in the catchment’s landscape. Such rewetted depressions in the landscape may act as stepping stones for plant and animal species and thereby increase the biodiversity of not only the rewetted ‘target’ stream valley, but also across its upgradient catchment. The successful candidate will be enrolled at the PhD School of the Faculty of Science. The position is available for a 3-year period.

Principal supervisor isAssociate professor Søren Jessen, Department of Geosciences and Natural Resource Management, sj@ign.ku.dk, direct phone: +45 5137 0693.

Candidate qualifications
The successful candidate holds a Master degree in geology, geography or other related Earth science, with a specialization in hydrogeology. Experience with distributed numerical hydrological modelling and reactive transport modelling is highly advantageous. Experience with conducting field and experimental laboratory work, or willingness to learn to do so, is expected. Knowledge of biogeochemistry is an advantage. Further, the candidate acknowledges the biological and ecohydrological scientific fields and aspects of the project, and appreciates to engage positively into the interdisciplinary work with fellow project collaborators. The candidate will closely collaborate with all members of the project team and share knowledge and results and take part in discussions at project meetings, and yet be able to work independently and self-guided. The candidate is expected to conduct an external research stay at another institution for a few months, preferably abroad. The candidate is expected to publish findings in international peer-reviewed journals and at international and national conferences. For this, excellent skills in data management and analysis as well as written and oral communication skills in English are required. The candidate will receive teaching/courses as well as contribute to the teaching of Water Resources research group’s curriculum. The candidate shall hold a driver’s license and be comfortable with driving alone as well as with others.

Application procedure
The application must be written in English and by the applicant. The application must be submitted electronically by clicking APPLY NOW below.

Please include

  • Cover Letter, detailing 1) your motivation for applying and 2) a careful description of your degree of fulfillment of the above mentioned qualifications.
  • CV (1 page maximum)
  • Copy of diploma and transcripts of records (BSc and MSc)
  • Up to three reference letters (if any)

Reference letters must be uploaded by no other but the applicant. It is against Danish law for the recruiting person to obtain reference letters which content is not known to the applicant.

The University wishes our staff to reflect the diversity of society and thus welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background.

The deadline for applications is 27 June 2021, 23:59 GMT+2.

For more information, click here

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