About Me


PhD or Postdoc Position in Paleoclimatology (Sclerochronology)

The Department of Paleontology, Institute of Geosciences at the University of Mainz (Germany) is pleased to announce a temporary job opening for a highly motivated and highly qualified PhD student or postdoctoral researcher. The objective is to better understand climate dynamics in the extratropical North Atlantic during the last millennium.
Spatiotemporal high-resolution marine proxy records, specifically from mid to high latitudes, are essential for developing an understanding of forcing and feedback mechanisms operating within the Earth system. However, existing marine paleo-records are insufficient to determine how fast regime shifts occurred or to provide details on spatiotemporal climate dynamics. For the first time, this study will generate uninterrupted, millennial-scale, quantitative, multiproxy records (e.g., delta18O, delta13C, Sr/Ca) of SST, salinity and primary productivity from various regions in the North Atlantic (e.g., Iceland, Gulf of Maine, North Sea) providing interannual - and where appropriate seasonal - resolution. Master chronologies will be constructed from shells of long-lived bivalves with overlapping life-spans. Results will significantly improve our understanding of the temporal dynamics of the oceanic Polar Front and regional / basin-wide hydrographic patterns, teleconnections, ocean-atmosphere couplings, decadal climate variability and rapid perturbations in surface waters. These new records can be used as input variables for numerical models of the coupled ocean-atmosphere climate to reduce the uncertainty in future simulations.
Broadly-trained applicants must hold a diploma/master degree, preferably in geo- or biosciences. In addition to scientific independence, the ideal candidate should demonstrate originality of the research focus and excellence in communication skills. Proficiency in written and spoken English is essential, and a basic understanding of German desirable. The appointment will be for a maximum of three years. Salary according to E13 TV-L (50-75% position) includes fringe benefits. The University of Mainz is an equal opportunity employer. Disabled persons with comparable qualification receive preferential status.
Interested individuals are invited to submit an application package including a statement of interest, CV, copies of certificates, degree transcripts if available and addresses of three referees as a single pdf to schoeneb@uni-mainz.deor via regular mail to Prof. Dr. Bernd R. Schöne, Institute for Geosciences, University of Mainz, J.-J.-Becherweg 21, 55128 Mainz, Germany.
Application Deadline: 5th April 2012.

Geotech Engineers & Engineering Geologists
The Opportunity:
The geological make-up of New Zealand offers exposure to new, interesting and challenging geotechnical issues and solutions. If you would thrive on taking up those challenges, and have been thinking about a move to New Zealand, now is the time to act!
Many of the Engineering and Environmental Consultancies in New Zealand are on the look out for Geotechnical Engineers& Engineering Geologists. They need additional people to meet the increased demand for services resulting from the recent earthquake in New Zealand's second largest city, Christchurch. There are also job opportunities in Auckland, Wellington and Dunedin.
The scope of projects on which you will apply your expertise and knowledge are diverse, including:
  • Site investigation & interpretive reporting
  • Foundation Investigation &design
  • Ground improvement
  • Slope stability and support
  • Land remediation associated withearthquake-related issues, eg., lateral spread, liquefaction, etc.
Your skills:
  • Hold a Bachelor or Masters level qualification in Geotechnical Engineering or Engineering Geology.
  • Minimum of 5-10 years relevant geotechnical engineering experience with design and consulting experience.
  • Good communication and people skills, and able to relate well to clients.
  • Developing project management, supervision and business development skills.
  • contact Lisa Hulley by email on jobs@peakrecruitment.co.nz

Research assistant in the field of sediment-based paleoclimatology

The 'Quaternary Geology and Paleoclimatology' group at the Institute of Geological Sciences of the University of Bern, Switzerland, is looking for a research assistant (postdoctoral level) in the field of sediment-based paleoenvironmental reconstructions. A focus should be given to paleoclimatologic studies on various temporal (i.e. Quaternary) and spatial scales using a variety of geological archives, such as marine and especially lacustrine sediments. The Geological Institute hosts with its research groups a broad spectrum of analytical laboratories (see www.geo.unibe.ch). The 'Quaternary Geology and Paleoclimatology' group in particular will establish a core-scanning facility for petrophysical and geochemical characterization of sediment cores, so that experience in the context of coring and drilling projects will be an advantage. Furthermore, the Faculty of Natural Sciences of the University of Bern hosts a competence center for climate research, so that fruitful collaborations can be expected.
Duties of this position will include initiation of research projects, generating third-party research funds, supervising students on BSc, MSc, and PhD-level and also contributing to the group's teaching activities (preferably partly in German). The applicant should have a PhD degree with some years of postdoctoral experience and a proven record of successful research and publication activities. Please send a full CV, a letter of motivation and research interests and the names of three references to Prof. Flavio Anselmetti (flavio.anselmetti@eawag.ch).
The position is fully funded including benefits for social security for two years with the option of extension to a maximum duration of 6 years. Evaluation of applications will start in March 2012 and continue until filled. The starting date of the position is ideally January 2013.

 Faculty position in Neotectonics, Remote-Sensing, and Geodynamics 

The Missouri University of Science and Technology Department of Geological Sciences and Engineering invites applications for a full-time tenure-track position at the assistant professor level in Geology and Geophysics in the area of Neotectonics, Remote-Sensing, and Geodynamics to begin September, 2012.  The successful candidate will be expected to develop an externally-funded research program integrated with excellence in teaching at both the graduate and undergraduate levels.  Teaching responsibilities will include courses in Tectonics and Remote Sensing as well as others in the individual’s area of expertise.  Specific research subfields of the successful applicant could include active deformation/geodesy/InSAR, morphotectonics/dynamic-topography, and crustal/mantle dynamics that can build on departmental strengths in Mechanical Earth Modeling, Tectonics, Geophysics/Seismology, and Natural Hazard Mitigation. For a full position description including application procedures visit: http://hraadi.mst.edu/hr/employment/geologygeophysics/

Announcement of a joint DMG – MSA event

We would like to draw your attention to a short course on the

Application of diffusion studies to the determination of timescales in geochemistry and petrology
to be held at the

Institut für Geologie, Mineralogie und Geophysik; Ruhr Universität Bochum, Germany

1-5 October 2012

This is a joint Deutsche Mineralogische Gesellschaft (DMG, The German Mineralogical Society) Short Course and Mineralogical Society of America (MSA) Workshop.

Bochum is located at the heart of Europe. It is therefore very conveniently accessible by road, train and air. The surrounding region, which includes Cologne and Dusseldorf, is densely settled and boasts a world-renowned cultural infrastructure.

Content: That course is directed at petrologists, geochemists and planetary scientists interested in retrieving information on timescales of processes from their rocks. Such information might include the residence times of magmas in their reservoirs, the cooling- or exhumation rates of rocks, the duration of terrestrial or extra-terrestrial (e.g. parent bodies of meteorites) metamorphism, the duration of fluid flow (e.g. metasomatism by fluids / melts in the crust or mantle), and the evaluation and application of closure temperatures.  Our focus will be high temperature processes.  Therefore "high temperature Thermochronometry" or "Geospeedometry" are related keywords that may describe the course contents.

Goals and expected profile of participants: Previous experience with numerical modeling or programming is not required, but an interest in learning the rudiments of these tools is. One of the objectives of the course, however, is to demonstrate how much it is possible to accomplish without any or with very little programming. The basic information on diffusion that is required for carrying out such calculations will be provided, but this is not a course designed to cover all aspects of diffusion in minerals and melts.

In addition to instruction via lectures, a major component of the course will be hands on training in small groups to enable participants to "do your own" modeling. Participants will be expected to bring their own laptop computers. All instruction and exercises will be in English.
The course material will be designed for graduate students or post-docs starting off in the fields mentioned above, but participants with all levels of experience and expertise are of course welcome. To maintain the hands-on nature of the course, we expect to restrict the number of participants to around 30, to be given out on a first come first serve basis. Student members of DMG and MSA will be given priority for registration if demand for a slot becomes a concern.

Instructors: Instruction will be provided by the staff, post-docs and graduate students at the Ruhr Universitaet Bochum. These include Sumit Chakraborty, Ralf Dohmen, Thomas Mueller, Massimiliano Tirone, Maren Kahl, Kathrin Faak and Sascha Borinski.

Registration and Fees: Interested participants can express intention to register by sending an email containing a brief paragraph describing their background / reasons for wanting to participate to:   Ralf.Dohmen@rub.de

There are NO course fees as such. However, we will charge a nominal fee of 30 Euros to cover expenses for refreshments during the course and for some course materials. Upon receiving an acknowledgement from Ralf that a place is available, this amount should be transmitted to the following bank account within 15 days to book a place:

Thomas Fockenberg
Account Number (Kontonummer): 501 449 541
Bank Tracking Code (BLZ): 424 614 35
Bank Name: Volksbank Kirchhellen
IBAN Code: DE 12 4246 1435 0501 4495 41

Further Information and Web: More details on course content and information on details of travel, accommodation etc. and other updates will be provided in a Short course webpage to be opened shortly under

General enquiries: Sumit Chakraborty (Sumit.Chakraborty@rub.de) or Ralf Dohmen (Ralf.Dohmen@rub.de). Information on non-technical matters can be obtained from the departmental Secretary's office as well: Agnes Otto (office-mineralogie@rub.de)

NERC-funded PhD project
Investigating the closure of the Tethys Ocean as recorded by the Liuqu Conglomerate, Tibet.
Lancaster Environment Centre (LEC), Lancaster University.
Supervised by:
In collaboration with Dr. Xuimian Hu, Nanjing University, China.

Closure of Tethys ocean, collision of India and Asia, and subsequent evolution of the Himalaya was a multistage process involving the accretion of more than one terrane. It has been proposed that the Paleogene Liuqu Conglomerates, which crop out discontinuously for many kms along strike along the Yarlung-Tsangpo suture zone between the Indian and Asian plates record the history of collision between India and an intra-oceanic arc. The timing of this collision can be constrained by the age of the conglomerate, which is thought to contain detritus from both the Indian plate and intra-oceanic arc, thus providing a minimum age to collision. The suggested absence of detritus from the Asian plate to the north suggests that the Tethys ocean was still in evidence at that time, and that final India-Asia collision had not yet occurred. However, the age of the Liuqu Conglomerate is poorly known and its provenance has not been assessed in detail, other than by conglomerate clast identification. The finer-grained sandier component of the unit may have been derived from more distal Asian terranes to the north and thus alternative geological histories of Asia-arc-India collision may be viable. This project will better constrain the age and provenance of the conglomerates using single grain isotopic techniques such as U-Pb dating on detrital zircons, analysing mineral grains extracted from the sandier fractions of the conglomerate unit. From this information, a better picture of the multistage process of the India-Asia collision can be built up. The student will be trained in sedimentological field techniques in Tibet, and petrographic, geochemical and isotopic lab techniques. The student will be part of the Environmental Geoscience Group at LEC (www.lec.lancs.ac.uk/research/environmental_geosciences/), and will carry out isotopic analyses at NERC’s Isotopic Geoscience Laboratories, a state-of-the-art National Facility at BGS Keyworth in Nottingham (www.bgs.ac.uk/nigl/).
Academic Requirements: First-class or 2.1 (Hons) degree, or Masters degree (or equivalent) in an appropriate subject.
Application Deadline: Midnight Sun 26th Feb 2012.  Provisional Interview Date: Fri 16 March. Start Date: TBC summer 2012 or later.
Application process: Please send a CV and a covering letter outlining your background and suitability for this project, along with two references (http://www.lec.lancs.ac.uk/docs/LECPG/PG_Reference_Form_LEC.docx) to Andy Harrod, lec.pg@lancaster.ac.uk,  Lancaster Environment Centre, Postgraduate Admissions. Please pass the reference form to your two referees and ask them to send their completed reference direct to Andy Harrod. Due to the limited time between the closing date and the interview date, it is essential that you ensure references are submitted by the closing date or as soon as possible.
Please do not apply via the online application system.
For further information please contact the supervisors or for application details please contact Andy Harrod, lec.pg@lancaster.ac.uk.
Funding Notes
Full studentships (fees and maintenance grant (£13,590 ( 2011/12) tax free, per year) are available to UK and EU candidates who have been ordinarily resident in the UK throughout the 3-year period immediately preceding the date of an award. EU candidates who have not been ordinarily resident in the UK for the last 3 years are eligible for "tuition fees-only" awards (no maintenance grant). Unfortunately this studentship is not available to non-UK/EU applicants.

The Helmholtz Centre Potsdam GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences is the national Research Centre for Geosciences in Germany and a member of the Helmholtz Association.

In the framework of TIPTIMON we are seeking a candidate for a

Ph.D. position (Reference No. 83/3/11 D)

interested in studying landslide and mass movement processes in seismotectonically active mountain regions by means of experimental and numerical simulation.

TIPTIMON (Tien Shan-Pamir Monitoring Program) is a joint research program planned to be funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) to investigate Late Cenozoic geodynamics, climate interactions and resulting hazards in Central Asia. The program involves partners from the Helmholtz Centre Potsdam, GFZ, the Technical University Bergakademie Freiberg, the Universities of Potsdam and Tübingen and the Senckenberg Natural History Collections Dresden.


Developing experimental and numerical Simulation methods for studying the landslide process.
Integration and analysis of regional geophysical, geomorphological, geological and hydro/-meteorological data.
Presentation and publication of results at international platforms

M.Sc. or a German "Diplom" or an equivalent degree in earth sciences with solid mathematical background or alternatively in other natural/engineering sciences or mathematics with a strong geoscientific background/interest.
Experience in experimental and numerical Simulation of Geoprocesses (beneficial)
Applications should include a resume/CV, M.Sc./Dipl. thesis (abstract or full text), copies of credentials and certificates and the names and addresses of at least two advocates and/or two reference letters. If your native language is neither English nor German, you should submit a proof of your English and/or German language proficiency.

Date: 01 April 2012 (subject to final grant approval)
Duration: 3 (2+1) years (subject to final grant approval)
Salary: TVÖD EG13 (50%) (subject to final grant approval)
Contact: Dr. Matthias Rosenau (rosen@gfz-potsdam.de)
Application period: Evaluation will begin two weeks from appearance of the advert and continues until the position is filled (preferentially by February 2012).

The partner institutions are equal opportunity / affirmative action employers and encourage applications from qualified female candidates. Handicapped applicants will be given preference in the case of equal qualifications.

Please submit your applications, stating the Reference No. 83/3/11 D, by email to rosen@gfz-potsdam.de.

Postgraduate Scholarship in Plate Tectonics/Geodynamics

Applications are invited for a PhD scholarship in Plate Tectonics/Geodynamics working with Professor Dietmar Müller's EarthByte Group at the School of Geosciences, the University of Sydney, for the project "Towards a unified East
Gondwanaland reconstruction and its implications for Himalayan Orogeny". The plate kinematic history leading to the separation and migration/collision of Gondwanaland fragments and the adjoining continental shelves and orogenic belts remain poorly constrained. Working as part of a team of scientists based in Sydney and Canberra, Australia and Goa, India, the objective of this PhD project is to develop more robust plate reconstructions for the rifting and breakup of Gondwana and the seafloor spreading history of the Indian Ocean, linked to geodynamic models. This project is at the interface between geophysics, e-research and space science. It will involve state-of-the-art numerical modeling tools, the assimilation of geophysical data into models of crustal deformation, and satellite potential field data.

Specific challenges include:

(1) Using quantitative constraints from areas of continental extension to derive more robust full-fit reconstructions of East Gondwana. The earliest phases of relative motion between each of the major plates relies on analysis of continental extension and breakup. Traditionally plate reconstructions have modeled the continents as rigid blocks, but software and workflows recently developed at the University of Sydney allow us to incorporate areas of continental deformation. Deriving more robust reconstructions for the original configuration of Gondwana will involve developing deformable plate reconstructions the conjugate passive margins of India, Africa, Madagascar, Antarctica, and Australia, as well as various continental fragments within the Indian Ocean. This analysis will build on geological and geophysical data describing the crustal structure of these extended regions (crustal thickness, sediment thickness, and correlation of ancient geological terranes between continents) leading to the generation of a deforming plate model and new Gondwana fit reconstructions. These reconstructions will help to resolve ongoing controversies surrounding the fit of the continents in Eastern Gondwana and the size of Greater India prior to collision with Eurasia.

(2) Resolving inconsistencies between different published regional plate tectonic models of the Indian Ocean to generate a single, self consistent history. Key areas include the Central Indian Ocean, Wharton and Crozet basins where marine magnetic anomaly data and fracture zones from satellite gravity data will be used. The resulting reconstructions will in turn provide a more detailed history of the convergence history between India and Eurasia during the Himalayan Orogeny.

(3) Understanding the links between the evolution of the Indian Ocean and regional and global-scale plate-mantle system reorganisations. Deformable plate reconstructions for the Indian Ocean and East Gondwana passive margins will be integrated into a global plate model which will then be linked to geodynamic modeling codes. This will enable investigation of the links between mantle dynamics, especially subduction processes, lithospheric deformation and surface topography.

Successful candidates must have:

an undergraduate degree and an Honours degree in physics, geophysics or geology
an interest to carry out research at the interface between geophysics and e-research
ability to work as part of a research team
good communication skills, and an ability to present results both orally and in written form, in English.
Amount awarded: Funding is valued at $23,728 per annum for three years

Additional information about the group's research can be found at www.earthbyte.org and about related software development at www.gplates.org Applications and enquiries should directed to Dietmar Müller, dietmar.muller@sydney.edu.au.

CLOSING DATE: 9 February 2012