PhD position – University of Bremen

A PhD Studentship “Southern Patagonian climate during the last 50,000 years: insights from lipid biomarkers and their isotopes (PASADO Lipids)” has become available at the Marine Environmental Sciences (MARUM), University of Bremen.

The Center for Marine Environmental Sciences (MARUM), University of Bremen, Germany ( has an opening for a three-year PhD position funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) through the “Schwerpunktprogramm” (priority programme) ICDP. The candidate will have the opportunity to obtain a doctorate degree at the University of Bremen.

This project strives for quantitative reconstructions of changes in temperature, precipitation and hydrologic balance in southern Patagonia over the last 50,000 years. The PASADO core drilled within the framework of the ICDP in Laguna Potrok Aike provides the material that enables to investigate new organic-geochemical parameters based on microbial membrane lipids and compound-specific isotope compositions. An extensive survey of lake organic matter sources will be conducted and regional climatic calibrations will be developed. Application to the sedimentary archive can provide new insights into past temperature, precipitation and evaporation changes which will be compared to existing data from paleo-biological, sedimentological and geochemical studies (see also: This project involves a strong collaboration with other scientists involved in the PASADO project.

Specific tasks include:

  • Organic-geochemical extraction, fractionation and purification of lipid extracts from various sample materials
  • Analyses of organic-geochemical extracts by GC, GC-MS and HPLC-MS
  • Compound-specific isotope analyses of lipids

Applicants should hold a Master or Diploma degree in geosciences, chemistry, biology or related disciplines with a strong interest in paleo-climate. We expect the ability to work in a team, good communication skills in English, enthusiasm for organic-geochemical analytical techniques, and commitment for the project. Prior experiences in organic geochemical methods and/or isotope analyses are advantageous.

Applications should be submitted before May 31, 2011, including:

  • Complete CV;
  • Relevant documents (copies only);
  • Statement describing specific interest in the respective project and relevant experience;
  • Two letters of reference.

Materials should preferably be emailed as single pdf file to Dr. Enno Schefuß ( or they could be sent as hardcopy to:

The attention of Dr. Enno Schefuß
c/o MARUM – University of Bremen
Leobener Straße, D-28359 Bremen

The position is available immediately but will remain open until filled.

Salary will be according to the German civil service remuneration system EG13 TV-L (66%).

As the University of Bremen intends to increase the proportion of female employees in science, women are particularly encouraged to apply.

Disabled persons with comparable qualification receive preferential status.