The Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ) with its 1,100 employees has gained an excellent reputation as an international competence centre for environmental sciences. We are part of the largest scientific organisation in Germany, the Helmholtz Association. Our mission: Our research seeks to find a balance between social development and the long-term protection of our natural resources.

The UFZ is going to establish a graduate school within the Research Unit “Environment and Society” on the topic Leverage Points for the Transformation to an Environmentally Sound Agriculture (AGRI-TRANSFORM).
Within this graduate school, we are looking for 4 dedicated PhD students. All PhD students will participate in a structured PhD training program, which facilitates integration and exchange among the PhD projects as well as within the larger UFZ research context. The PhD students will contribute scientific evidence for an agricultural transformation by conducting policy-relevant research on the following topics:

  • behavioural insights and adequate policy responses for sustainable agriculture
  • farming 4.0 as challenge and opportunity for a transformation towards environmentally sustainable agriculture
  • modelling of energetic and material biomass usage within sustainable agriculture and nutrition scenarios
  • economic modelling of future drought impacts on German agriculture

PhD position (m/f/x) Subject: Farming 4.0 as challenge and opportunity for a transformation towards environmentally sustainable agriculture

Project start: 1st December 2019, working time 65% (25,35 hours per week), limited to 3 years

Your tasks:

Widespread application of novel digital technologies in agriculture (Farming 4.0) is a potentially double-edged sword for the environment, since the new possibilities can foster a more environmentally sensible agriculture or a further intensification of agricultural land management. If Farming 4.0 is to relieve the burden on the environment, appropriate governmental framework conditions are needed. Moreover, Farming 4.0 is not only a challenge but also an opportunity for enforcing environmental regulation, as it enables public authorities to monitor and evaluate individual agricultural land management digitally and in high-resolution. By addressing both challenges and opportunities of Farming 4.0, the envisaged legal dissertation project will identify institutional and regulatory preconditions in Germany that need to be met in order to facilitate an environmentally sustainable transformation of agricultural production.

Your profile:

  • first State Examination in German Law or Master’s degree in German and European Law
  • proficiency in German and English language
  • experience with environmental or agricultural law
  • motivation to work in an interdisciplinary environment
  • basic understanding of the functioning of modern agriculture is beneficial

We offer:

  • top level interdisciplinary research at a research centre which enjoys an excellent reputation within Germany as well as internationally
  • excellent technical facilities
  • work in interdisciplinary and multinational teams
  • excellent links to national and international research networks
  • support and optimal training courses by our graduate school (HIGRADE)
  • remuneration in accordance with the TVöD public-sector pay grade 13 (65%)

The UFZ has a strong commitment to diversity and actively supports equal opportunities for all employees regardless of their origin, religion, ideology, disability, age or sexual identity. We look forward to applications from people who are open-minded and enjoy working in diverse teams.

Your contact for any questions you may have about the job:
Dr. Stefan Möckel

Please submit your application via our online portal with your cover letter, CV (please omit your photo, age, or marital status) and relevant attachments.

Place of work: Leipzig

Closing date for applications:

Please use our online application system for your application:

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More information about jobs at the UFZ:

Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research GmbH – UFZ
Permoserstraße 15
04318 Leipzig