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The Leibniz Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries (IGB) is inviting applications for a PhD position focussing on the role of microorganisms for phosphorus diagenesis in lake sediments. The position is based at the Department of Chemical Analytics and Biogeochemistry in Berlin. Funding has been secured for 3 years.

We seek to recruit an excellent and highly motivated doctoral student with an interest in interdisciplinary work. The project will focus on the interplay of microbial and chemical mechanisms to forming P minerals. The results serve as basis for innovative managing of eutrophication and P recovery from natural and technical systems. The position is part of the Innovative Training Network (EU) “Capture, recycling and societal management of phosphorus in the environment” (RecaP). The consortium involves multiple fellow students, scientists, engineers and economists from eleven countries.

Your tasks

  • Laboratory experiments to study the conditions and formation of vivianite-type minerals in lake sediments
  • Verification the role of microbial phosphorus as precursor for phosphorus minerals
  • Usage of modern analytical tools for the determination of phosphorus binding forms in lake sediments
  • Prepare manuscripts and present results at project meetings and conferences
  • Closely collaborate, exchange data, and mutual support within the graduate school
  • Complete a doctoral dissertation


Your profile

  • MSc degree in Environmental Science or Environmental Engineering, Soil Sciences, (Geo)chemistry, Aquatic Microbiology, or a related field
  • Experiences in chemical lab work and knowledge in the field of Aquatic sciences
  • Good team working skill and interest in international cooperation
  • Very good English language skills


Our offer

We offer an interesting position in an international and dynamic scientific environment. We foster career development by providing qualification and training opportunities. The reconciliation of work and family life is actively supported. Qualified researchers from underrepresented groups are particularly encouraged to apply. Applications will be treated equally, independent of gender. Severely disabled persons with equal qualification will be given priority. This is a fixed-term position. It is a full time position for doctoral research. Salary is paid according to EU roles for MCSA-ITN.

Are you interested?

We look forward to receiving your complete application including a letter of motivation indicating research interests and experiences, a description of your approach to the above mentioned project (one page excluding references,  your CV, two letters of recommendation, Bachelor and Master certificates, and your Master Thesis). The deadline for application is 31 May 2021. Please state the job reference number 21/2021 and apply exclusively via our recruitment platform at The RecaP website includes more detailed information about recruitment and selection. Enquiries can be directed to Dr. Michael Hupfer at




“Research for the future of our freshwaters” is the mission of the Leibniz Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries (IGB). The IGB is Germany’s largest and an internationally leading research centre for freshwaters. We seek to understand the fundamental processes governing fresh waters and their communities. Our research findings help to tackle global environmental changes and to develop measures for sustainable water management. The IGB is a diverse and inspiring place to work and conduct research. We promote individual development at every career level and stand for lively exchange and cooperation. With more than 350 employees and guests from all over the world, we conduct research at five locations in Berlin and at Lake Stechlin north of the city. IGB closely collaborates with numerous national and international universities and other partners in science and society and is a member of the Leibniz Association, which connects 96 independent public research institutes in Germany.