PhD position in Physical Geography

University of Basel

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Position type:

Full time

10 Jan 2017
09 Feb 2017

Full details:

Reference number: UOB-b6e7

The Physical Geography and Environmental Change Research Group at the University of Basel explores landscape and environmental dynamics across resource-scarce areas in drylands and mountains. The Research Group is seeking a doctoral student to investigate the physical boundaries of dust emissions from croplands in South Africa. The post is a full time PhD position funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNF).

Starting date: 01.09.2017

Length of the PhD position: 3 years

Required qualifications and competencies:


  • Master degree in Geography, Agricultural Science, Environmental Science or equivalent
  • Excellent command of written and spoken English. Knowledge of German is an advantage
  • Excellent interpersonal skills in an international and culturally diverse research environment
  • Ability to work independently and think across scales and themes
  • Statistics and quantitative analytical skills
  • Excellent organizational skills for planning tasks, logistics and deliverables



  • Conducting fieldwork in South Africa with a wind and rainfall simulator for data collection and related data processing
  • Establishing contacts with farmers to install the unit on their land and interviewing them on their management practices
  • Assessing and modelling physical boundaries of dust emissions based on environmental parameters
  • Contributing to the Research Group's international visibility through scientific publications in prominent journals and presentations in international fora
  • Contributing to the Research Group's strategy for research grant acquisition


We offer:

  • A vibrant and international scientific environment with diverse research interests spanning soil and agriculture, climate change and global governance
  • A fully funded doctoral programme based on SNF conditions
  • A range of courses taught at the Universities of Basel and Cape Town pertaining the position research scope
  • Scientific collaboration with South African researchers
  • Travels to South Africa

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