PhD position in Environmental Sciences

Project title: Agro-ecological processes and management practices associated with dust emissions in central South Africa. In association with the University of Basel in Switzerland, the Agricultural Research Council-Animal Production Institute and the Department of Geography and Environmental Sciences at the University of Cape Town. (Deadline for applications: 31 May 2017)

PhD position in Environmental Sciences

Project title: Agro-ecological processes and management practices associated with dust emissions in central South Africa. In association with the University of Basel in Switzerland, the Agricultural Research Council-Animal Production Institute and the Department of Geography and Environmental Sciences at the University of Cape Town. (Deadline for applications: 31 May 2017)

Project title: Agro-ecological processes and management practices associated with dust emissions in central South Africa.


In association with the University of Basel in Switzerland, the Agricultural Research Council-Animal Production Institute and the Department of Geography and Environmental Sciences at the University of Cape Town are exploring landscape and environmental dynamics across resource-scarce areas in drylands and mountains. The South African component of the Research Group, comprising Dr Tony Palmer from the ARC and Prof Frank Eckardt from UCT, is seeking a doctoral student to investigate the agro-ecological processes associated with dust emissions from croplands in the western parts of the Free State and the eastern regions of the Northern Cape, South Africa. The post is a full time PhD position funded by the National Research Foundation (NRF). Starting date: as soon as possible. Length of the PhD position: 3 years


Required qualifications and competencies:

  •  Master degree in Geography, Agricultural Science, Environmental Science or equivalent
  •  Excellent command of written and spoken English, as well as a good command of spoken Afrikaans.
  •  Excellent interpersonal skills in an international and culturally diverse research environment
  •  Ability to work independently and think across scales and themes 
  •  Statistics and quantitative analytical skills
  •  Excellent organizational skills for planning tasks, logistics and deliverables

Duties:

  •  Conducting fieldwork in South Africa with the view to determining the agricultural practices that may be exacerbating wind erosion.
  •  Establishing contacts with farmers to conduct questionnaire surveys on the impact of dust emissions on crops, human health, ecosystem services as well as determining associated management practices.
  •  Contributing to the Research Group's international visibility through scientific publications in prominent journals and presentations in international conferences.
  •  Contributing to the Research Group's strategy for research grant acquisition

We offer:

  •  A vibrant and international scientific environment with diverse research interests spanning soil and agriculture, climate change and global governance
  •  A fully-funded doctoral programme based on NRF conditions and a range of courses taught at the Universities of Basel and Cape Town pertaining to the position research scope.
  •  Scientific collaboration with Swiss researchers and travel to Switzerland.

Application:

  •  Candidates are requested to submit their applications electronically in a single pdf file to Prof Frank Eckardt (frank.eckardt@uct.ac.za) in the following order: cover letter, CV, contact details of three referees, a transcript of their Master's grades, and a copy of their Master's thesis (if at the time of applying the thesis is not finalized, candidates may explain the level of advancement of their work and expected completion date of their degree).
  •  CV should indicate clearly what peer-reviewed publications are planned or have been submitted as part of their completed research.

 

Deadline for applications: 31.05.2017


Candidates may choose to be registered in either the Department of Environmental Sciences at Rhodes University, or in the Department of Geography and Environmental Sciences at the University of Cape Town.
 

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