PhD Scholarship in Physical Geography and Ecosystem Science

Outstanding international students are invited to apply for a PhD scholarship in environmental sciences at Lund University. Successful candidate will have funding to work and study for 4 years in Sweden. Applications are welcome before January 20, 2019.

The Faculty of Science conducts research and education within Biology, Astronomy, Physics, Geosciences, Chemistry, Mathematics and Environmental Sciences. The Faculty is organized into nine departments, gathered in the northern campus area. The Faculty has approximately 1500 students, 330 PhD students and 700 employees.

The PhD student will carry out research within the project " Model-Data Fusion for improving quantification of methane fluxes from wetlands with LPJ-GUESS, CH4DAS" which is a newly funded collaborative project between the Department of Physical Geography and Ecosystem Science (INES) and the Centre for Mathematical Sciences at Lund University. The research also links to the activities of the Carbon Portal of the Integrated Carbon Observation System (ICOS), a European infrastructure for measurement and analysis of greenhouse gas concentration and fluxes from ecosystems and oceans, and to ICOS-Sweden, both hosted at INES. The position is embedded within the inverse modelling group at INES and there is the possibility of establishing international collaborations with colleagues in Germany and the Netherlands.

Methane (CH4) is a key component of the global carbon cycle and one of the most important greenhouse gases. An increased atmospheric burden of CH4, caused by increased emissions, intensifies the Earth's greenhouse effect causing a shift in the planetary energy balance involving complex interactions and feedbacks. The amounts of CH4 that conceivably could be released from boreal wetlands are potentially very large. A better understanding of CH4 emissions from wetlands is of paramount importance. It is only since recent years that model-data fusion techniques have successfully been applied to improve our understanding in the global CO2 cycle. In this project, the PhD student will develop a prototype CH4 Data Assimilation System assimilating CH4 flux observations.

In particular, the PhD student will, in collaboration with ecosystem modellers and mathematical statisticians, work with and refine an established model-data fusion method (here based on a Monte Carlo approach) to exploit the observational constraint of methane ecosystem flux measurements on model estimates of CH4 fluxes from wetlands via the optimisation of model process parameters. The research will lay out the basis for a methane cycle data assimilation system (CH4DAS, analogue to CCDAS; Scholze et al. 2007, J. Geophys. Res. 112, D17305). Data assimilation can be seen as a way of combining observations with 'prior' information (i.e. process model formulation and prior model process parameter value) to derive updated ('posterior') parameter values that are consistent with the observations. Initial work will focus on using CH4 measurements from one wetland site as part of the ICOS network, scaling up to a broader regional or pan-boreal scale.

A PhD student is committed to conduct independent and original scientific research, to present this research at international conferences and report on it in international scientific journals, and to publish the results of the research in a PhD dissertation, to be completed within 4 years.


Students with basic eligibility for third-cycle studies are those who

The employment of doctoral students is regulated in the Swedish Code of Statues 1998: 80. Only those who are or have been admitted to PhD-studies may be appointed to doctoral studentships. When an appointment to a doctoral studentship is made, the ability of the student to benefit from PhD-studies shall primarily be taken into account. In addition to devoting themselves to their studies, those appointed to doctoral studentships may be required to work with educational tasks, research and administration, in accordance with specific regulations in the ordinance.

Type of employment

Limit of tenure, four years according to HF 5 kap 7.


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