The climate needs bright minds. The Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) addresses crucial scientific questions in the fields of global change, climate impacts and sustainable development. It is one of the world's leading research institutions in its field and offers natural and social scientists from around the world an inspiring environment for excellent interdisciplinary research.

Within the Earth System Model Intercomparison Project (ESMIP) / Earth Modelling Science Targets Intercomparison Project (EMSTIP) led by the Earth Commission and funded by external sources, PIK is looking for

2 Post Doctoral Earth System Modelers

(Position number: 14-2020-Postdoc)

starting on 01.04.2020 or as soon as possible.

The positions are funded initially for 15 months, with the possibility of a 12 months extension or longer depending on the availability of funding. Remuneration is in accordance with the German public tariff scheme (TV-L Brandenburg), salary group E13. Both positions are full-time with a weekly working time of 40 hours per week. Appointment is conditional on approval by the funding agency. The positions can be filled on a part-time basis. 

The Earth Commission ( comprises 20 scientists and experts who will synthesize the latest research to define the conditions for a healthy planet, informing the setting of science-based targets to help maintain Earth’s life support systems: climate, land, biodiversity, freshwater and oceans. Future Earth is hosting the Earth Commission’s scientific secretariat in collaboration with the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, PIK, and the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis, IIASA.

The Earth System Model Intercomparison Project (ESMIP) / Earth Modelling Science Targets Intercomparison Project (EMSTIP) aims at carrying out a first community based generation of full-scale Earth system model runs exploring the biophysical boundaries that define the long-term stability of the Earth system. Experiments are designed to assess feedbacks and interactions between atmosphere, ocean, land and biosphere, and to quantify processes that regulate the state of the Earth system, with a special focus on climate and carbon cycle feedbacks. 

The postdoctoral scientists filling the 2 positions will be responsible for furthering the development of the Potsdam Earth Model POEM and conducting and analyzing simulations within ESMIP/EMSTIP.

Key responsibilities:

  • Design experiments and conduct simulations within the Earth System Model Intercomparison Project (ESMIP) / Earth Modelling Science Targets Intercomparison Project (EMSTIP)
  • Further the development and coupling of the Potsdam Earth Model (POEM), with a focus on the terrestrial and marine carbon cycle 
  • Co-supervise team members (doctoral student, research analyst)
  • Write and publish articles in peer-reviewed journals that highlight findings from the research, and present research findings at conferences and workshops 
  • Contribute to writing of reports within the scope of the Earth Commission


  • PhD degree (or equivalent) in a relevant field (mathematics, physics, geophysics or similar)
  • strong experience with Earth System modeling and model development
  • expertise in terrestrial and/or marine carbon cycle and/or atmosphere dynamics is a plus

We expect:

  • capacity for teamwork 
  • fluency in oral and written English
  • advanced scientific programming skills
  • scientific writing skills
  • willingness to travel for work (project meetings, workshops etc.)

We offer

  • the opportunity to work on cutting-edge scientific questions in Earth system analysis
  • a stimulating working environment in one of the world’s leading climate-change research institutes on Potsdam's beautiful, historic Telegrafenberg campus
  • competitive remuneration with a collective pay scheme and associated benefits

PIK seeks to increase the share of women in scientific positions and therefore explicitly encourages women to apply. In cases of equal qualification and within the given legal scope, women will be given preference. Applications by persons with a migration background are expressly encouraged. Applications of disabled persons with equal qualifications will be regarded favourably. PIK also encourages applications by parents returning from parental leave.

Please apply by 22.03.2020 directly using our application form.

The size of the file should not exceed 15 MB.

For further information or to discuss the position please contact Prof. Dr. Ricarda Winkelmann at

Potsdam-Institut für Klimafolgenforschung e.V. (PIK)
2020-03-22T23:00:00Z FULL_TIME
YEAR null
Potsdam 14473 Telegrafenberg
52.3806053 13.0642447