Doctoral position in Marine/ Chemical science

The Netherlands Earth System Science Center (NESSC) is a virtual institute funded by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science and founded in 2014. The aim of the NESSC is a better understanding of Earth’s climate system in past, present and future. The program is comprised of multiple projects each focusing on different aspects of the Earth’s climate system and from different disciplines, i.e. paleoclimatology, microbiology and modeling.

The NESSC is a collaboration between the University of Utrecht, Radboud University, Free University of Amsterdam, Wageningen University and the NIOZ Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research. At the NIOZ we will focus on developing novel tools for paleoclimate reconstructions and the generation of high resolution paleoclimate records.

In this NESSC project we want to develop novel organic geochemical tools to reconstruct past atmospheric methane concentrations. A large number of diverse microbes are involved in the generation and consumption of methane, generally with characteristic biomarker lipids and a distinct isotope signature. A number of these are involved in the oxidation of atmospheric methane.

Through cultivation and environmental studies we will investigate the (quantitative) relationship between atmospheric methane concentrations and the stable isotope and distribution of biomarker lipids of methanotrophic microbes. The project is in collaboration with microbiologists from the Radboud University of Nijmegen.


We like to get into contact with a seriously motivated PhD with excellent practical and cognitive abilities. You must hold an MSc degree and have a background in biology, geosciences, environmental science or chemistry. Experience with (in)organic (bio)geochemistry or microbial ecology is beneficial. Good English speaking and writing skills are essential.

Conditions of employment

We are offering a fulltime position for 4 years, a pension scheme, an annual 8% vacation allowance, year-end bonus and flexible employment conditions. Our labour policies are based on the Collective Labour Agreement of Research Centers (WVOI). Cost of relocation and housing will be provided by the Royal NIOZ.

Contract type: Temporary, 4 years.


The Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research (NIOZ)

The Royal Netherlands Institute for Sea Research (NIOZ) is the leading research institute in the Netherlands for the basic marine sciences. Five departments (Physical Oceanography, Marine Geology, Marine Organic Biogeochemistry, Biological Oceanography and Marine Ecology) carry out the multidisciplinary research of the institute. Approximately 250 persons are currently appointed at the NIOZ. NIOZ has a large variety of instrumentation and is operating modernly equipped research vessels for coastal and ocean studies. The institute is located on the Wadden Island of Texel, close to the mainland.

Additional information

Additional information on job details: S. Schouten and/or Prof. dr. ir.J.S. Sinninghe Damsté(department head).

For additional information about the procedure, please contact Jolanda Evers, HR advisor.

Closing date: 2015-May-12