Doctoral Researcher in Integrative Biodiversity
Leipzig University German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity

iDiv, the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research Halle-Jena-Leipzig, invites applications for five doctoral researcher positions beginning in October 2020 for candidates who have a strong background in integrative biodiversity research and are keen to develop scientific networks. They will play a vital part in enhancing iDiv’s scientific strategy and boosting its research profile in key thematic areas.

iDiv is a national research centre funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG). Located in the city of Leipzig, it is a Central Institution of Leipzig University and jointly hosted by the Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg, the Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena and the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ). The scientific consortium is further enhanced by the expertise of other research institutions, including several Max Planck Institutes and the Leibniz Association. More information about iDiv:

Specifically, we offer the following positions, details of which are available at

  • Project: “Traversing the canopy – how do transport processes of microbes and matter shape phyllosphere microbial communities?”, Dr Martina Herrmann (affiliation: FSU Jena)
  • Project: “Detecting long-term functional changes in biodiversity: boosting analyses of herbarium specimens using spectroscopic methods (FunSpec)”, Professor Karsten Wesche (affiliation: SMNG/FSU Jena)
  • Project: “Macroecology and macroevolution of plant – frugivore trait matching in the tropics”, Dr Renske Onstein (affiliation: Leipzig University)
  • Project: “Identifying drivers of intra- and interspecific leaf trait variation in space and time from digitized herbarium specimen using computer vision approaches”, Dr Jens Kattge (affiliation: MPI- BGC/FSU Jena)
  • Project: “Understanding soil biodiversity: Using the new functional framework for root traits (Root Economics Space) to predict soil-borne fungal communities in grasslands (RESfun)”, Professor Alexandra Weigelt (affiliation: Leipzig University)

We offer:

  • Work in a dynamic, international and interdisciplinary environment
  • Opportunities to develop and advance scientific networks
  • Cutting-edge research in modern facilities
  • Doctoral researchers at iDiv benefit from inter- and transdisciplinary training and support by the graduate school yDiv
  • Attractive benefits, e.g. contributions to capital formation, subsidised public transport pass, company pension scheme (VBL)
  • Family-friendly working environment with flexible working hours
  • Salary in accordance with the German public service salary scale (up to TV-L E13, 65 % of a full-time position)

We seek:

Highly motivated scientists with a strong interest in participating in enhancing iDiv’s research profile. German is not a prerequisite for all positions, but a very good command of English is necessary. Applicants must hold a master’s degree or equivalent in a relevant field. The employment contract will initially be limited until 30 September 2021. An extension for a further 2–3 years is possible and dependent upon successful renewal of DFG funding for iDiv (evaluation in spring 2021).

Kindly send your application via our application portal at While we prefer applications via this portal, hard-copy applications may also be sent to:

German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research – iDiv (Halle-Jena-Leipzig)
Dr Christa Genz
Deutscher Platz 5 e
04103 Leipzig

It is possible to apply for several projects. Please note that you can apply for multiple PhD positions in this Flexpool call.

The deadline for submissions is 10 July 2020. Selected candidates will be invited to the online joint recruitment symposium on 31 August until 1 September 2020.

Queries concerning the application process should be directed to Ms Christa Genz; for project-related questions, please contact the relevant project leader.

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Severely disabled persons are encouraged to apply and will be given preference in case of equal suitability. Please note that applying via email is not entirely secure under data protection law. The sender assumes full responsibility.

iDiv is committed to establishing and maintaining a diverse and inclusive community that collectively supports and implements our mission to do great science. We will welcome, recruit, develop, and advance talented staff from diverse genders and backgrounds.

Closing date:

10 July 2020


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