Position available: PhD candidate in Community Ecology and Biogeography of Aquatic Ecosystems

Project description

Global change is driving biodiversity loss at unprecedented rates constituting a global threat to human welfare and ecological stability. Consequences of such changes (e.g., warming, drought, salinization) are particularly pervasive in aquatic ecosystems (e.g., ponds, lakes, rivers). Ecosystem services (i.e., benefits provided to people, both directly and indirectly) by aquatic biodiversity are amongst the most vulnerable to global change posing serious risks to people’s access to food, water through natural filtration processes and buffering against soil erosion and drought and salinization. Unravelling the links between global change impacts on biodiversity and the structure of aquatic food-webs is critical to be able to predict ecosystem-level responses to future change. The development of environmental genomics (e.g., environmental, and ancient DNA), machine learning and other computational approaches provides a unique opportunity to reconcile knowledge about past (long-term) responses of biodiversity to global change, with modern datasets generated by empirical and experimental approaches. In the proposed PhD project, the successful candidate will develop a project combining palaeoecological and modern datasets to reconstruct food-web responses to environmental change, from local to global scales.

Candidate profile

  • We are looking for a bright and committed candidate interested in conservation biology from a community ecology perspective to conduct a PhD based at the MNCN-CSIC (Madrid).
  • Previous knowledge in analysing and modelling food-webs, ecological networks is a useful complement.
  • Previous knowledge and experience with aquatic ecosystems is welcomed.
  • BSc/MSc in ecology, biology, environmental sciences, geography, or related subjects.
  • Ability to work in groups, share ideas, and network.
  • Solid knowledge of R (and/or Matlab) and GIS.
  • Good writing skills and fluency in English.

What we offer

  • 3-years contract commensurate with experience.
  • Joint supervision by Ramón y Cajal Fellow (Miguel Matias) and senior researcher (Miguel B. Araújo).
  • Integration in a vibrant group of highly motivated international researchers.
  • Fully supported research project through ongoing grants at MNCN.

 How to apply

Please send your application to miguel.matias@mncn.csic.es until the 31st of January 2024 with:

  • A complete CV (no longer than 5 pages).
  • A cover letter explaining why you are ideal for the post.
  • Two names who can provide references and their contact.