Doctoral scholarship holder, Carbon sequestration in Coastal Wetlands

Updated: about 2 months ago

Department: Department of Biology
Regime Full-time

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The Department of Biology in the Faculty of Sciences is looking for a full-time (100%) doctoral scholarship holder in the field of Carbon sequestration in Coastal Wetlands


  • As part of a larger research project, you will work on a PhD study (4 years) on carbon sequestration in coastal wetlands. Coastal marshes are among the most effective ecosystems that can mitigate the climate warming by carbon sequestration into their soils. But the climate warming in itself is impacting coastal marshes through sea level rise and there is much uncertainty about its impact on soil carbon accumulation and preservation. The objective is to advance understanding of the global and local variability in soil organic carbon dynamics in response to coastal marsh submergence by sea level rise. This will be done by a combination of (1) compilation and analyses of innovative global datasets, (2) detailed local field studies in marshes in the Netherlands and the USA, with clear spatial gradients in marsh submergence by sea level rise, and (3) applications of a new integrated model of carbon inputs and outputs in marsh soils in response to future scenarios of sea level rise. The core of the PhD work will consist of field sampling of sediment cores and different sources of organic carbon, lab analyses (among others stable carbon isotopes), data analyses, and writing of scientific papers. You will work in a team, interacting among others with other PhD students and post-doc researchers working on carbon dynamics and other ecological processes in tidal marshes and mangrove forests.
  • You will communicate results at national and international conferences and symposia. You will publish results in high-quality scientific journals, and you will prepare a PhD thesis.
  • You may contribute to supporting teaching for courses on Estuarine & Coastal Systems, and Geographical Information Systems.


  • You hold a master degree in Biology, Bio-engineering, Physical Geography, Oceanography, Marine Sciences or related disciplines; or you will have obtained it by the time you start working.
  • You can demonstrate excellent study results.
  • Preferably you have a background knowledge on carbon fluxes in ecosystems; also basic understanding of the ecological, hydrological, and geomorphological functioning of tidal systems (estuaries, coastal lagoons, marshes, mangroves...) is an added value;
  • You are not afraid of field work in often challenging conditions (in terms of mud, water…) in swampy marshes;
  • You are enthusiastic about joining field campaigns of several weeks to marshes in the USA;
  • You have a driving license to drive a regular car;
  • You are fluent in English (both speaking and academic writing);
  • Your teaching competences are in line with the University of Antwerp’s educational vision .
  • Your research qualities are in line with the faculty and university research policies .
  • You act with attention to quality, integrity, creativity and cooperation. 

What we offer

  • We offer a doctoral scholarship for a period of one year. Following a positive evaluation, the scholarship can be renewed once for another three-year period (i.e. four years in total).
  • The planned start date is 1 May 2022 or as soon as possible after that date.
  • Your monthly scholarship amount is calculated according to the scholarship amounts  for doctoral scholarship holders on the pay scales for Contract Research Staff (Dutch: Bijzonder Academisch Personeel, BAP).
  • You will receive ecocheques, and a bicycle allowance or a full reimbursement of public transport costs for commuting.
  • You will do most of your work at campus Drie Eiken in a dynamic and stimulating working environment.
  • Find out more about working at the University of Antwerp here .

Want to apply?

  • You can apply for this vacancy through the University of Antwerp’s online job application platform up to and including the 26th of June 2022 (by midnight Brussels time). Click on the 'Apply' button, complete the online application form and be sure to include the following attachments: a motivation letter, your CV, and contact information of max. 2 reference persons.
  • The selection committee will review all of the applications as soon as possible after the application deadline. As soon as a decision has been made, we will inform you about the next steps in the selection procedure.
  • If you have any questions about the online application form, please check the frequently asked questions  or send an email to . If you have any questions about the job itself, please contact Prof. Stijn Temmerman, e-mail: .

The University of Antwerp received the European Commission’s HR Excellence in Research Award  for its HR policy. We are a sustainable, family-friendly organisation which invests in its employees’ growth. We encourage diversity  and attach great importance to an inclusive working environment and equal opportunities, regardless of gender identity, disability, race, ethnicity, religion or belief, sexual orientation or age. We encourage people from diverse backgrounds and with diverse characteristics to apply.

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