2 PhDs positions at the University of Hamburg

2 PhD positions are open in the group of Prof Möllmann at the University of Hamburg. The position commences on 1 January 2016

The successful candidates will work within the project “MARine MAnagement and Ecosystem Dynamics under climate change (MARmaED)” an Innovative Training Network funded by the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Action (The European Union's Horizon 2020) for the period 2015-2019. MARmaED is an international and interdisciplinary network that unifies specific and complementary competences in marine sciences from Norway, Finland, Denmark, the Netherlands, Germany and France to investigate how the cumulative stress from biodiversity loss, climate change and harvesting will affect Europe’s complex marine systems and the consequences for optimal resource management. The project’s main aim is to investigate how combined anthropogenic and climatic changes affect different harvested ecosystems and how management strategies can be improved to ensure sustainable exploitation and resilience. MARmaED will provide salary for 15 PhD projects.


The first position:

The specific PhD project of this position will investigate "The importance of the Biodiversity –Ecosystem Functioning (BEF) relationship for resilience and vulnerability of marine exploited fish populations to climate change and fisheries exploitation." According to theory high levels of biodiversity positively affect important ecosystem functions such as production, trophic interactions and elemental cycling. Stability in the provision of these ecosystem functions may maintain resilience and hence low vulnerability of marine populations to the effects of climate change and fisheries exploitation. Biodiversity will hence regulate or mediate the importance of external drivers and eventually determine the ecosystem services that humanity needs for their well-being. The project will explore (1) the existence of the theoretical biodiversity (taxonomic and functional) ecosystem functioning (BEF) relationship, (2) how variability in the BEF relationship is related to resilience/vulnerability of fish populations, and (3) how climate change and exploitation affect the relationship between biodiversity and fish populations. Modern statistical techniques such as Generalised Linear and Additive Mixed Modelling (GLM, GAM) as well as Hierarchical Multi-Level Modelling (HMLM) approaches will be applied to case studies for marine systems with different and contrasting species richness levels. Candidate systems are the Central Baltic Sea (species poor), the North Sea (species rich) and the Barents Sea (species poor).

During the course of the PhD project, the candidate will have three mandatory secondments: 1) In Denmark at the National Institute of Aquatic Resources-Technical University of Denmark (DTU Aqua) to work on time-series modelling techniques; 2) in Finland at the Åbo Akademi University to work on functional diversity measurements, and 3) at the World Wide Fund for Nature in Hamburg to work on the science-policy interface.

see also EURAXESS

The second position:

The specific PhD project of this position will investigate "The ecosystem and socio-economic context of North Atlantic cod recovery under climate change and exploitation pressure". Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) is a top predator and key component of North Atlantic marine ecosystems. Many of these commercially important populations have collapsed due to overfishing and climate-induced changes in physical oceanographic conditions. North Atlantic cod stocks are well investigated, but usually either with a focus on bottom-up or topdown effects on food web dynamics. Moreover socio-economic effects are usually considered largely separate from the ecological ones. A holistic investigation of cod population dynamics under climate and fishing effects is hence largely lacking. The project will built on applying Structural Equation Modelling (SEM) a statistical technique developed in social science but now increasingly applied in ecology. SEM allows for simultaneous estimation of relationships within a network of interactions and evaluating their relative importance. Here population dynamics (biomass, recruitment, growth and mortality) will be investigated for cod stocks with a contrasting history, specifically Eastern Baltic (unknown state), North Sea (overfished) and Barents Sea cod (sustainably fished).

During the course of the PhD project, the candidate will have three mandatory secondments: 1) In Norway at Oslo University to work on statistical modelling techniques; 2) in the Netherlands at Wageningen University to work on bio-economic modelling, and 3) at the Marine Stewardship Council in Berlin to work on fisheries ceritifcation processes.

see also EURAXESS



For further information, please contact Prof. Dr. Christian Möllmann [Tel. +49 40 42838 6621; christian.moellmann@uni-hamburg.de] or consult our website at https://www.biologie.unihamburg. de/ihf/mitarbeiter/researchers/moellmann.html.
Applications should include a cover letter, curriculum vitae, and copies of degree certificate (s). The application deadline is 15 October 2015.

Please send applications to:

Prof. Dr. Christian Möllmann, Institute for Hydrobiology and Fisheries Science, University of Hamburg, Grosse Elbstrasse 133, D-22767 Hamburg, Germany.

By Joël Durant
Published Aug. 28, 2015 3:37 PM - Last modified Sep. 14, 2015 10:01 AM