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Postdoctoral researcher, Data analysis and modelling of phenology and growth of deciduous temperate forest trees - 2019BAPFWETEF146

The Faculty of Science is seeking to fill a full-time (100%) vacancy in the Department of Biology for a

Postdoctoral researcher (with a subsidy) in the area of ‘Data analysis and modelling of phenology and growth of deciduous temperate forest trees’

The selected candidate will join the Centre of Excellence PLECO (Plant and Ecosystems, The position fits within the ERC project LEAF-FALL (

Job description

  • You contribute to research on data analysis and process-based modelling of phenology, seasonal- and annual growth of deciduous temperate forest trees. In particular, the successful candidate will: (i) compile original datasets based on experimental data collected within LEAF-FALL across species and sites and enrich them with other publicly available data; (ii) analyze these datasets, and (iii) integrate insights from this analysis into a large-scale model of forest ecosystem dynamics, ORCHIDEE-CAN (
  • You co-supervise PhD students and other team members.
  • Part of your job will be the organization and management of project applications within the field of the vacancy and the search for external funding.

Profile and requirements

  • You hold (or get during the application period) a doctorate degree (PhD) in biology or applied biology, environmental sciences, forest engineering or similar. The PhD has to be awarded from a non-Belgian university/institute.
  • The ideal candidate has experience in handling large datasets, statistical analysis such (meta)analyses and developing process-based vegetation models. Good knowledge of statistical and scripting tools such as R, MATLAB, Pyton or similar is requested.
  • The candidate’s scientific expertise should be supported by international peer-reviewed publications.
  • The candidate will have to stay abroad (up to 3 months) within the group of Dr. Sebastiaan Luyssaert (VU Amsterdam) one of the main developer of ORCHIDEE-CAN and collaborator for this part of the project.
  • You are fluent in academic English (speaking and writing).
  • Your academic qualities comply with the requirements stipulated in the university’s policy.
  • You are quality-oriented, conscientious, creative and cooperative.

We offer

  • an appointment as a postdoctoral researcher for a period of 2 years, with the possibility of a one year extension depending on the funding agency;
  • the date of appointment can start between November 1, 2019 (preferably) and February 1, 2020;
  • a full time net monthly grant ranging from € 1.903,00 - € 3.125,00;
  • a dynamic and stimulating work environment.

How to apply?

  • Applications may only be submitted online until July 15, 2019. Please add the following attachments: (i) motivation letter of 1-2 pages max, showing your interest in the topic, (ii) CV, showing your expertise in the topic, (iii) a PDF copy of one international peer-reviewed publication (published or submitted or very close to be submitted) of which you are most proud of and you appear as first author (unpublished manuscripts will be treated strictly confidentially), (iv) a copy of your PhD diploma, and (v) three potential reference scientists.
  • A pre-selection will be made from amongst the submitted applications.
  • The short-listed candidates will be invited for an interview with the selection panel.
  • More information about the application form can be obtained from
  • For questions about the profile and the description of duties, please contact Prof. Matteo Campioli at

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