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For a DFG funded research project on the fate of trace organic compounds (TrOCs) in streams and their streambeds the IGB in Berlin-Friedrichshagen is inviting applications for a PhD position starting as of 01 Feb. 2023.

This is a PhD position in a pleasant working environment in a research group studying groundwater-surface water interactions and attenuation of TrOCs in streambeds. The project will be conducted in close collaboration with Ben-Gurion University in Israel, where part of the PhD work will be conducted. The project is supervised by a team of two German and three Israeli scientists. It comprises, in addition to the position advertised here, a second PhD position hosted in Israel. In case you are interested in that position please contact Shai Arnon (

Project: High TrOC loads occur in lowland streams that receive treated wastewater. Such streams are often characterized by fine sediments in which water flow over small bedforms creates pressure differences and some water flows into, within and out of the streambed (hyporheic exchange flow). Flow through the sediment attenuates some of the TrOC load. Bedform migration is common in streams with fine sediments but significantly understudied. It affects the distribution of flow paths, fluxes, and redox zones within the bed. The project aims to investigate the effects of migrating bedforms on TrOC attenuation in streambeds and to determine how dynamic flow regimes affect bed mobility and TrOC attenuation. Field investigations will be carried out in a sand-bed stream in Berlin (River Erpe) and flume experiments will be conducted in a unique flume at Ben-Gurion University (Israel) that allows systematic variation of bedform celerity and a dynamic flow regime to gain insight into the key processes controlling TrOC attenuation. By improving the mechanistic understanding of TrOC attenuation in streams, the proposed research aims to improve long-term predictions of TrOC fate in streams and advance remediation strategies to improve water quality in freshwater systems. More details on the project “Dynamic hyporheic zone: Impact of non-steady stream flow and moving streambeds on the fate of trace organic contaminants” can be found here:

Your tasks

  • Planning and conduction of field experiments in an urban stream
  • Organization and implementation of flume experiments on TrOCs in migrating streambeds
  • Analytics of trace organic compounds
  • Data analysis and interpretation
  • Preparation of three manuscripts as first author for submission to high impact journals, contribution to three further manuscripts as co-author and DFG project reports
  • Presentation of research results on national and international conferences

Your profile

  • Excellent master in hydrology, hydrogeology, geoecology, geochemistry, environmental sciences or a related field
  • Practical experiences with either challenging fieldwork or sophisticated lab/flume experiments is essential
  • Analytical experiences are highly desirable
  • Professional competencies in data evaluation and interpretation are desirable
  • Experiences in groundwater hydrology and biogeochemistry as well as knowledge of groundwater-surface water interfaces or trace organic contaminants are advantageous
  • Excellent oral and written English skills including scientific writing are essential
  • Good German is advantageous but not mandatory
  • Collaborative teamworking and good communication skills are essential
  • Willingness to spend 6 month of the PhD in Israel is mandatory

Our offer

We offer an interesting position in an international and dynamic scientific environment. We foster flat hierarchies and active participation. We allow maximum individual freedom, enabling everyone to develop and use their creativity to the best of their abilities.

Salary is paid according to the German salary scheme for the public sector (TVöD Bund). It is a 75% position for doctoral research (salary grade E 13 TVöD) for three years. The position is not suited for job-sharing or part-time work.

The IGB is committed to diversity. We welcome every application, regardless of gender and gender identity, origin, nationality, religion, belief, health and physical disabilities, age or sexual orientation.

We foster your career development by providing qualification and training opportunities. We actively support the reconciliation of work and family life. Applicants are treated equally regardless of gender. Qualified women are particularly encouraged to apply. Severely disabled applicants with equal qualification and aptitude will be given preferential consideration.

Main Supervisors

Dr. Jörg Lewandowski (IGB)
Dr. Stephanie Spahr (IGB)
Prof. Shai Arnon (BGU)

Are you interested?

We look forward to receiving your complete application including a letter of motivation indicating research interests and experience, a CV with two letters of recommendation, Bachelor and Master certificates, and your Master Thesis. Please state the job reference number 18/2022 and apply exclusively via our recruitment platform at

Reviews of the applications will begin on 15 Nov. 2022 and continue until the position has been filled.

Questions can be directed to: PD Dr. Jörg Lewandowski by phone (+49 30 64181-668) or by e-mail (




“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 one of the leading international research centres for freshwaters. We seek to understand the fundamental processes governing freshwaters 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 (Brandenburg). 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.