Post-doc position on Soil Health and Monitoring

Applications for a Post-doc position on Soil Health and Monitoring at Wageningen University & Research (WUR) in the Netherlands.

Wageningen University & Research (WUR) seeks to strengthen its team with an outstanding postdoc with expertise in soil health assessment and monitoring. Capturing the complexity of soil life for soil health assessments is one of the most challenging paradoxes of contemporary soil science. Soil biota performs a plethora of processes that are fundamental to soil health. These processes in turn support a range of ecosystem functions (nutrient cycling, water regulation, carbon management, climate regulation, disease and pest regulation, and plant growth). As the concepts of soil quality and health developed, so have the attempts to integrate soil biological measurements into monitoring schemes from field to regional scale.

The successful candidate will co-develop a soil monitoring framework for the assessment of soil health and multifunctionality with a range of users and scales in mind (farm-scale, value chains to national and international policy/governance objectives) The framework will bring together the best scientific knowledge on the role of soil biodiversity in tandem with chemical and physical conditions to understand multifunctionality.

Duration: 4 Years


The portfolio for this position will be split into four key areas;

  1. Develop a flexible quantitative scientific framework to define indicators of soil health and multifunctionality (biological, chemical, and physical) (Building on the work of Creamer et al., 2022 and Zwetsloot et al., 2022) across a range of scales and ecosystems.
  2. Further develop the BIOSIS method selection tool (www.biosisplatform.EU) for a range of user contexts, from applied research to support land managers to policy decision making.
  3. Create a soil monitoring benchmarking approach for application in a range of climatic regions for agricultural soils.
  4. Quantify synergies and trade-offs in multifunctionality at different scales of assessment for a range of ecosystem types. 
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  • A gross monthly salary of between € 2.846 and € 5.230,- for a full-time working week of 38 hours;
  • sabbatical leave, study leave, and partially paid parental leave;
  • working hours that can be discussed and arranged so that they allow for the best possible work-life balance;
  • the option to accrue additional compensation/holiday hours by working more, up to 40 hours per week;
  • a fixed December bonus of 8.3%;
  • excellent pension scheme.

Job Requirements

  • The position seeks a PhD in soil science, soil ecology, and/or agronomy, with a strong soil-related background, and experience related to soil health/quality or multifunctionality assessment across a range of scales.
  • A candidate who demonstrates a strong aptitude and proven record in modeling or statistical models for the quantification of soil health/multifunctionality.
  • Experience in the spatial assessment of soil monitoring, and design of monitoring systems.
  • Have a good knowledge of the laboratory assessment of soil properties (biological, chemical, and/or physical).
  • A good understanding of agricultural soil management practices.
  • The ability to develop new ideas and modeling approaches to assess and benchmark soil health/multifunctionality
  • Excellent communication and writing skills in English.

Application Process

Interested applicants for the Post-doc position on Soil Health and Monitoring, can apply by attaching the following documents:

  • curriculum vitae and
  • cover letter

To apply, click here

Application Deadline: July 12, 2022.

For more information, visit the official site.

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