Postdoc position on mapping global land use (re: geo-computation, open data, collaborative workflows, etc.)

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We’re offering an attractive position for a postdoctoral researcher at iDiv/UFZ (Leipzig, Germany) on
“Mapping global land-use patterns and recent historical changes” (limited until 30 September 2020) - Detailed information at

Detailed information on global land use patterns and dynamics is crucial for biodiversity, climate, food security, and many other research fields. With the emergence of new remotely-sensed data, there are new opportunities for mapping multiple land-use dimensions as mutually consistent time-series. To develop land-use datasets using cutting-edge methodologies in a highly interdisciplinary and collaborative environment, we offer an exciting two-year Postdoc position at the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research Halle-Jena-Leipzig (iDiv). The project is supervised by Dr. Carsten Meyer (head of iDiv Macroecology & Society group), Dr. Isabel Rosa (iDiv Biodiversity Conservation group), and Prof. Ralf Seppelt (head of UFZ department for Computational Landscape Ecology).

Job description:

  • developing spatiotemporal analysis and modelling routines to create annual global time-series of land-use variables for a broad range of thematic variables pertaining to the extent, intensity, and management type of the three dominant classes of human land-use (cropping, grazing, and forestry)
  • integrating, harmonizing, and further advancing routines for downscaling and interpolating reported land-use statistics via state-of-the-art remotely-sensed covariate layers (e.g. land cover)
  • leading the development of open science and collaborative IT solutions as part of longer-lasting tools for global land-use analysis
  • leading the dissemination of project results via journal publications, conference presentations, media presentations, etc.
  • contributing to the management of the collaborative project (co-organization of project meetings, etc.)

Requirements/expected profile:

  • successfully completed PhD in a project-related field, and a solid (geo)informatics-related education at some point in your career
  • high motivation and skills to develop efficient solutions for large data processing tasks
  • prior experience in command-line based geo-computation, open source programming languages (ideally in a Linux environment), and version control (e.g. Git) is expected
  • proactive, team-oriented and having strong communication and written skills in English

We offer:

  • highly dynamic working environment
  • regular close interaction with an international consortium of land-use mapping experts (incl. Profs. Steffen Fritz, Marius Gilbert, Tim Robinson, Peter Verburg) as well as researchers at iDiv and UFZ, notably collaboration with the group of Prof. Lars Bernhard (Geoinformatics at TU Dresden) and iDiv’s informatics units
  • access to the high-performance cluster resources of iDiv/UFZ

Applications are accepted until August 6, 2018

Applications should include:

  • cover letter describing motivation, research interests & relevant experience
  • curriculum vitae, including a detailed account of relevant technical skills/prior experience
  • access to one of your recent IT projects in a field related to this position (e.g. links to GitHub depository)
  • digital copy of your best first-authored journal publication or conference paper
  • one letter of recommendation as well as contact details of two scientific references
  • digital copy of PhD certificate

Applications with reference file number 156/2018 are accepted via our application portal under We prefer applications via our application portal, hard copy applications can be sent to German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research – iDiv; Dr. Hanna Weise; Deutscher Platz 5e; 04103 Leipzig. For queries on the application process, please contact Dr. Hanna Weise (; for research project questions, contact Dr. Carsten Meyer (