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  3. PhD position to study carbon flow in mushroom ecosystems (4 years)

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PhD position to study carbon flow in mushroom ecosystems (4 years)

Utrecht University's Faculty of Geosciences has a PhD position to study carbon flow in mushroom ecosystems. Are you interested in this position? Then please read the full profile and apply.

10 maanden geleden


Domplein, Utrecht, Utrecht
Tijdelijk contract / Tijdelijke opdracht
Uren per week:
38 - 38 uur
€ 2222 - € 2840 per maand


The Department of Earth Sciences at Utrecht University is currently seeking a motivated PhD candidate to work within the research programme Traffic Control: optimal flow of nutrients to developing mushrooms. The programme is in co-operation with the Department of Biology, and overall involves four positions, two postdoctoral fellows and two PhD students, fully funded by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research, Applied and Engineering Sciences Division.

You will investigate in detail the flow of carbon and nutrients within a mushroom ecosystem. You will use stable isotopes as deliberate tracers, and use compound-specific isotope analysis of biomarkers and imaging secondary ion mass spectrometry (nanoSIMS) to study uptake and transfers of carbon and nitrogen between the compost, mushrooms and microbes.

Up to 10% of your time will be dedicated to assisting in the BSc and MSc teaching programmes of the Department of Earth Sciences. A personalised training programme will be set up and mutually agreed upon recruitment, which will reflect your training needs and career objectives.


You are an enthusiastic graduate student holding an MSc degree that ensures appropriate background knowledge such as Biology, Earth Sciences, Environmental Sciences, or Agricultural Sciences, and with a strong passion for research. Prior knowledge on stable isotopes, organic geochemistry and microbiology is an asset, but is not required.

Important accessory qualifications include positive social/verbal/communication skills, determination, willingness to travel abroad, eagerness to develop multidisciplinary skills, and ability to share and explain results to researchers from other disciplines (notably numerical modelling community). You should have excellent written and spoken English skills.


You will be offered a full-time position at first for one year. Depending on a good performance, this may be extended to a total period of four years, with the specific intent that it results in a doctorate within this period.

The gross monthly salary starts with €2,222 in the first year and increases to €2,840 (scale P according to the Collective Labour Agreement Dutch Universities) in the fourth year of employment with a full-time appointment. The salary is supplemented with a holiday allowance of 8% per year and an end-of-year bonus of 8.3%. In addition, we offer a pension scheme, collective insurance schemes and flexible employment conditions.

Facilities for sports and child care are available on our main campus (where the Department of Earth Sciences is situated), which is located only 15 minutes away from the historical city centre of Utrecht. You’ll find more information about Working at Utrecht University here.

Additional information

Would you like additional information? Then please contact the project leader Prof. Jack Middelburg: J.B.M.Middelburg@uu.nl.


A better future for everyone. This ambition motivates our scientists in executing their leading research and inspiring teaching. At Utrecht University, colleagues from various disciplines collaborate intensively towards major societal themes. Our focus is on Dynamics of Youth, Institutions for Open Societies, Life Sciences and Sustainability.

The city of Utrecht is one of the oldest cities in the Netherlands, with a charming old center and an internationally oriented culture that is strongly influenced by its century-old university. Utrecht city has been consistently ranked as one of the most livable cities in the Netherlands.

The Faculty of Geosciences conducts education and research concerning the geosphere, biosphere, atmosphere and anthroposphere. With a complement of 2,600 students (BSc and MSc) and 600 staff, the Faculty is a strong and challenging organisation. The Faculty is organised in four Departments: Innovation, Environmental & Energy Sciences, Earth Sciences, Physical Geography, and Human Geography & Urban/Regional Planning.

The Department of Earth Sciences conducts teaching and research across the full range of the solid Earth and environmental Earth sciences, with activities in almost all areas of geology, geochemistry, geophysics, biogeosciences and hydrogeology. The department hosts a highly international group of more than 100 PhD students and postdoctoral researchers and houses a wide variety of world-class laboratories.