We at the Department of Soil and Environment conduct state-of-the-art research on the soil system in both national and international contexts. Our research focuses on fundamental soil properties and processes, as well as how soil functions are affected by changes in environmental conditions, including climate change. Through research, environmental analysis and education, we contribute knowledge about future sustainable land use and develop new solutions as a basis for decision-making in agriculture, forestry and the urban environment.

The working environment at the department is international and we have around 100 employees. Our research is carried out in seven subject groups with a focus on soil biology, soil nutrient cycling, soil chemistry, agricultural water management, soil and environmental physics, soil mechanics and soil management, and the biogeochemistry of forest soils.

We are responsible for important research infrastructure in the form of soil chemistry and soil physics laboratories, an X-ray scanner, long-term field experiments, a lysimeter facility, and the field research stations at Lanna and Lövsta. The Department contributes to approximately 30 courses at undergraduate and advanced level.

We are a part of the Soil, Water and Environment Center at SLU (MVM-center), which provides links to environmental monitoring and research on water systems, recycling and bioenergy. Our work is aligned to national environmental and climate goals as well as to the Sustainable Development Goals. We are situated at Campus Ultuna in Uppsala and in Skara.

Duties: Climate extremes are projected to become more frequent and severe in Nordic regions. In particular, spring droughts lead to a significant reduction in crop yields with negative economic consequences for farmers and society. Therefore, resilient production systems that deliver genuinely long-term sustainable cropping (eco)systems are required to secure crop productivity that will contribute to necessary climate change mitigation.

We are looking for a highly motivated individual to join and develop our research focusing on the relationship between diversified agricultural systems and soil functioning.

The holder of the position is expected to

  • develop our research on the relation among genotypic, phenotypic and functional diversity profiles in the rhizosphere of monoculture and diversified agricultural systems (both annual and perennial cropping systems).
  • setup and use the laboratory equipment (microdialysis in combination with rhizoboxes) for measuring soil biodiversity and processes in the rhizosphere.
  • develop a bioenergetics based soil organic matter model, in collaboration with other researchers.

The position is linked to several ongoing projects but there is a clear scope for developing your own research ideas in cooperation with your mentor and other scientists at SLU.

Qualifications: The candidate

  • shall have a PhD degree in a topic that is relevant for the position.
  • shall have documented experience in the use of microbial community (e.g. amplicon sequencing, metagenomics) and/or functional diversity (e.g. enzyme activity, multiple-substrate induced respiration) profiling methods.
  • shall have a documented capability to carry out independent research and skills in writing scientific publications.
  • shall have good ability in English, both orally and written.
  • should have an ability to work in a team and independently, showing an ability to take initiatives and organizational skills are a distinct advantage.

Postdoctoral appointments are career‐developing positions for junior researchers, and we therefore are primarily looking for candidates with a doctoral degree that is three years old at most.

Applications must be written in English and contain (1) CV with full publication list, (2) copies of the two most important publications, (3) a description of past research , current research interests, and a description of the research you want to develop further (max 3 A4 pages), and (4) proof of PhD exam. The names and contact information for at least two referee persons should be provided.

Place of work: Uppsala , Form of employment: Temporary employment 24 months, with the possibility of extension. Extent: 100% Starting date: 1 of May 2023 or according to agreement.


We welcome your application no later than 2023-03-19, use the button below.

Academic union representatives: The Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU) is a world-class international university with research, education and environmental assessment within the sciences for sustainable life. Its principal sites are in Alnarp, Umeå and Uppsala, but activities are also conducted at research stations, experimental parks and educational establishments throughout Sweden. We bring together people who have different perspectives, but they all have one and the same goal: to create the best conditions for a sustainable, thriving and better world.

SLU has just over 3,000 employees, 5,000 students and a turnover of SEK 3 billion. The university has invested heavily in a modern, attractive environment on its campuses. Contact person: Anke Herrmann, Professor of Soil Nutrient Cycling anke.herrmann@slu.se


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