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  3. PhD Candidate Predicting biodiversity patterns with environmental DNA (eDNA)

PhD Candidate Predicting biodiversity patterns with environmental DNA (eDNA)

The Natural Resources department (NRS) of ITC works in the domains of Agriculture and Environment with a focus on food security, biodiversity and ecosystems …

12 dagen geleden


Drienerlolaan, Enschede, Overijssel
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
38 - 38 uur
€ 2325 - € 2972 per maand


The Natural Resources department (NRS) of ITC works in the domains of Agriculture and Environment with a focus on food security, biodiversity and ecosystems (forests, wetlands, drylands). The department uses earth observation data and spatial information in combination with systems modelling, geographical information systems (GIS) and remote sensing for the assessment, monitoring, planning and management of natural resources, for their sustainable use, development and restoration under global change.

For a European Research Council project, you will take an active part in developing an exciting new research direction linking Earth observation (EO) with eDNA metabarcoding for biodiversity assessment.

Your specific profile includes investigating whether eDNA profiles of phyllosphere communities (i.e. the microorganisms inhabiting the above-ground portions of plants) can be linked to the unique spectral signal from remote sensing as well as in situ biodiversity observational data. You will trace microbial communities (as discriminated by eDNA profiling) to a unique spectral signal, and then map the communities using remote sensing. Further, the PhD candidate investigates upscaling of microbiological communities by next-generation remote sensing.


You have:

  • An MSc in molecular ecology, microbiology or biology, biochemistry, geography or similar.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of DNA extractions from environmental samples.
  • It is desirable to have DNA amplification and sequencing as well as bioinformatics.
  • Refined written and oral skills in English at IELTS level > 6.5.
  • It is desirable to have knowledge of upscaling (e.g. using GIS and remote sensing data)
  • Experience with programming and manipulating large data sets.
  • Experience in experimental design and statistics such as R, Python.
  • Willingness to collect field data, travel and upscale results.
  • Willingness to work in a multidisciplinary science team.


Additional information about this position can be obtained from Prof Andrew Skidmore (e-mail: a.k.skidmore@utwente.nl) or Prof Arjen de Groot (g.a.degroot@wur.nl). You are also invited to visit our homepage.

Please submit your application before 15 June 2020 (choose “apply now” below). Your application must include:

  • A cover letter (maximum 1 page A4), emphasizing your specific interest, qualifications and motivations to apply for this position
  • a full Curriculum Vitae, including a list of all courses attended and grades obtained
  • a short description (maximum 1 page A4) of your MSc research with a short description of your relevant laboratory and field experience


We offer you an inspiring multidisciplinary and challenging international and academic environment. The university offers a dynamic ecosystem with enthusiastic colleagues in which internationalization is an important part of the strategic agenda.

You will be fulltime employed for a period of 4 years. Salary and conditions will be in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement (CAO-NU) of the Dutch Universities.

  • A starting salary of € 2,325.00 in the first year and a salary of € 2,972.00 in the fourth year gross per month;
  • A holiday allowance of 8% of the gross annual salary and a year-end bonus of 8.3%;
  • A solid pension scheme;
  • 41 holiday days in case of full-time employment;
  • Professional and personal development programs;
  • Costs for moving to Enschede may be reimbursed.


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