PhD position in Marine Biogeochemistry

The Department Biological Oceanography of the Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research Warnemünde (IOW) is offering a part-time (30hrs/week) position of a PhD Candidate (*gn)

The fixed term position will start on 11/01/2020 and continue until 10/31/2023. Remuneration is paid in accordance with the TV-L salary scale at level EG 13TV-L(75%).

The IOW is an independent institute of the Leibniz Association, engaged in system analysis of coastal and marginal seas, with special focus on the Baltic Sea. The scientists of the four departments (Physical Oceanography and Instrumentation, Marine Chemistry, Biological Oceanography and Marine Geology) cooperate within the framework of a joint research program.

The German Research Foundation (DFG) funded MeNARP Project (Metabolism of Nitrogen in the Amazon River Plume (ARP) and Tropical North Atlantic) studies the impact of riverine nitrogen on the cycling and turnover of nitrogen and carbon and functional biodiversity of higher trophic levels. Estuaries critically control how much of allochthonous nutrients from rivers reach the open ocean and how much carbon dioxide can be sequestered in the river plume. Along the Amazon River outflow nutrients and plankton communities change significantly. In particular, the role of allochthonous nutrients for the production along the plume is still unclear. Specifically, the project will (1) determine the functional biodiversity in different planktonic compartments in the habitats along the plume using bulk and amino acid nitrogen and carbon stable isotope proxies (CSIA); (2) quantify the turnover of new and regenerated nitrogen species at the bulk and amino acid specific levels; (3) empirically link trophic structure and nitrogen metabolism to potential abiotic driving mechanisms that allow an implementation into current biogeochemical models.

Job description

You will be responsible for the determination of -assimilation rates of inorganic and organic nitrogen that will be determined using the 15N-tracer method during the project ?s research cruise on FS METEOR (M174) to the ARP in April/May 2021. Furthermore, you will determine the pool of dissolved organic nitrogen (DON and DIN) and determine the natural abundance values of stable nitrogen isotopes ( 15N).


You have a very good university degree (Master/Diploma) in marine biology, marine biogeochemistry or related fields and demonstrable experience in interdisciplinary work. Fitness for working at sea and willingness to participate in sea-going research expeditions are also a prerequisite. Experience with analytical chemistry is a plus. Knowledge on cycling of matter in the ocean and in nitrogen in particular is helpful. You have very good oral and written communication skills in English, good interpersonal skills, and are comfortable working in a team. Finally, you have a strong interest in the interdisciplinary collaboration with physical oceanographers and marine chemists and will achieve a PhD within 3 years.

Applicants are kindly asked to send their complete applications (Cover letter, CV, copies of certificates, references and description of relevant experiences, publications) quoting the code Bio 08/2020 until August 20th 2020 to:


Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research Warnemünde
Dept. Human Resources
Seestraße 15
D-18119 Rostock

The interviews are expected to be in the first or second week of September 2020.

Applications of disabled persons with the same professional and personal qualification will be treated preferentially. Please indicate a handicap in the cover letter and enclose the relevant certificate. The job advertisement is aiming at all persons regardless of their gender (* gender neutral).

The IOW promotes equal opportunities and has been awarded for the third time in a row the Total Equality Certificate in 2019. An overview of our equal opportunities measures and to improve the compatibility of work and family can be found at Applications of female candidates are expressly encouraged and will be treated preferentially in case of equal qualifications and suitability, as the open position belongs to a structural unit in which women are underrepresented.

The Leibniz Institute for Baltic Sea Research offers a varied work in the immediate vicinity of the Baltic Sea. Interdisciplinary research topics on the Baltic Sea ecosystem, broad in-house expertise in physical, chemical and biological oceanography, and marine geology, state-of-the-art-laboratory equipment and infrastructure together with modern facilities provide an excellent framework for best research conditions.

Application and travel costs cannot be reimbursed.

For further Information, please contact Maren Voss ( or visit our website:

published: 23 July 2020     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.