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Postdoc Position: “Carbon and nutrient cycling across the North Sea-Atlantic Ocean frontier (NoSE project)”

Netherlands, Noord-Holland, TexelOcean systems (OCS)

Job description

The Department of Ocean Systems (OCS) at the Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research is looking for a highly motivated postdoctoral scientist with a background in marine biogeochemistry. In this 3-year position, you will investigate carbon and nutrient cycling in seawater passing through the Norwegian Trench, in order to determine the long-term fate of CO2 absorbed from the atmosphere in the North Sea and its biogeochemical impact on the surrounding Atlantic Ocean. The position will involve highly collaborative work within an international consortium. We have recently recruited 6 PhD candidates and this is one of 3 postdoctoral researchers we are now seeking who will all work closely together across the NoSE project.


The North Sea-Atlantic Exchange (NoSE) project

The North Sea is a highly productive and heavily exploited continental shelf sea that absorbs significant quantities of atmospheric CO2. But the fate of absorbed CO2 is highly uncertain, in particular the balance between outflow into the Atlantic Ocean and burial in sediments, so we cannot accurately project how this may change in the future. In NoSE, a multidisciplinary consortium of researchers (from NIOZ, Delft University of Technology, University of Groningen, Utrecht University, and several international partners) will determine the past, present and future role of the North Sea within the wider biogeochemical system of the Atlantic Ocean. Focusing on the Norwegian Trench, which is both the main outflow route to the Atlantic Ocean and the main place where sediments accumulate within the North Sea, we will investigate the transport and conversion processes that regulate carbon and nutrient exchange between the land, shelf sea and open ocean through a combination of oceanographic research expeditions and computer modelling. By linking these results to the palaeo-record from seafloor sediments, NoSE will reveal new insights into how the cycling of carbon and nutrients in the North Sea and their exchange with the Atlantic Ocean have varied over the past thousands of years and how they may continue to evolve in the future.

Job requirements

Position

The NoSE project includes ‘work packages’ focused on water column processes, sediment biogeochemistry, the palaeo-record, and modelling. While this position falls primarily under the first of these (water column), its aim is to draw together all the different lines of research to lead and support synthesis studies tackling the big scientific questions on which NoSE is based, for example: what is the final fate of CO2 absorbed from the atmosphere in the North Sea? How variable is this uptake and what are its drivers? How is CO2 uptake linked to (micro)nutrient cycling? How might this change in the future under different stressors and climate scenarios? This will involve co-supervision of NoSE PhD and associated Masters students as well as collaborative work with all researchers involved in the project. You will use observational data collected during NoSE and other research expeditions, including from state-of-the-art biogeochemical sensors on autonomous platforms (ocean gliders and moorings), and combine this with model output and information from the palaeo-record to lead the creation of an overall budget of carbon and nutrient cycling through this key oceanographic region.


Candidate

You must have completed a PhD in oceanography, marine biogeochemistry or a related discipline, ideally with a focus on marine carbon and/or nutrient cycling. You should be able to show that you can write high quality scientific articles and effectively communicate your results in presentations and meetings.

Other skills/experience that would give you an advantage (we don’t expect you to have all of these!), in no particular order, include

  • Using and interpreting ocean model output,
  • Coding (e.g., Python),
  • Supervising (Masters or PhD) students,
  • Participation in and preparation for oceanographic research expeditions,
  • Working with autonomous sensors and observing platforms (moorings, gliders),
  • Outreach for maximising research impact (scientific or societal).

Due to the international character of our research, good command of spoken and written English is essential (at least C1 CEFR proficiency level, all IELTS components at 6+). The exact starting date is flexible, but we are looking for someone who will be available to start working on Texel in the second half of 2023.

We highly encourage applicants from all members of our community and of diverse background, including LGBTQI+, to join us.


Department

Researchers in the Department of Ocean Systems (OCS) at NIOZ study open-ocean processes from a variety of disciplines including physical and chemical oceanography, marine geology, palaeoceanography and deep-sea ecology. We investigate the past and present ocean in order to assess its future role in the Earth system. We collect data during oceanographic research cruises and conduct experiments both at sea and in the laboratory at our home base on Texel. The department carries out work in diverse environments all around the globe, from the Antarctic to the Arctic, and from the Caribbean to the North Sea.


Conditions

We are offering a 3-year full-time Postdoc position. Employment of this position at Royal NIOZ is by NWO-i (The Netherlands Organization of Scientific Research). The salary is compliant to the CAO-OI (Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Research Institutes) scale 10 or 11 depending on relevant experience. Furthermore, NIOZ offers a pension scheme, a holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary, a year-end bonus of 8,3% of the gross annual salary, flexible work arrangements and 42 days of holiday leave (fulltime position).

You may expect attractive secondary employment conditions. We offer generous relocation expenses for employees coming from abroad and support with finding accommodation.

Application process

If you are interested in this opportunity, please submit

  1. your CV, including education, work experience, and research activities (e.g., publications, fieldwork, conference presentations);
  2. a motivation letter (max. 2 pages), where you show how your skills and experience will allow you to succeed in this position; and
  3. the names and contact information of 3 referees, including a brief explanation of your professional relationship with each one.

We will begin reviewing received applications and inviting suitable candidates for interview from Monday 20th February 2023, after which the application process will remain open until the position is filled.

There will be a two-step interview process starting from late February 2023. The first interview will take place via Teams. Successful candidates will then be invited for a second interview in person at NIOZ Texel.


More information

Potential applicants are welcome to make contact prior to submitting their application. For additional information about this vacancy, please contact Dr Matthew Humphreys (PI for this position) and/or Dr Furu Mienis (overall NoSE PI). For additional information about the procedure, please contact Sigrid Moerbeek (sr. HR advisor). Please visit the website of the Department of Ocean Systems here.

Closing date for applications: when position is filled; review of applications begins 20th February 2023.