Two PhD in Marine Science – end 31 October 2015 – Åbo Akademi University, Finland

marmaed-logo-507px Åbo_Akademi_logo.svgEnvironmental and Marine Biology at Åbo Akademi University offers two 3-year PhD fellowships. The fellows will work within the project “Marine Management and Ecosystem Dynamics under Climate Change (MARmaED)”, which is an Innovative Training Network funded by the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Action (The European Union’s Horizon 2020) under grant agreement No 675997 for the period 2015-2019. MARmaED is an international and interdisciplinary network that unifies specific and complementary competences in marine sciences from Norway, Finland, Denmark, the Netherlands, Germany and France to investigate how the cumulative stress from biodiversity loss, climate change and harvesting will affect Europe’s complex marine systems and the consequences for optimal resource management. The project’s main aim is to investigate how combined anthropogenic and climatic changes affect different harvested ecosystems (terrestrial, freshwater, and marine – particularly, but not only, in Arctic regions) and how management strategies can be improved to ensure sustainable exploitation and resilience. MARmaED will provide salaries for a total of 15 PhD projects within the network.

Position 1: Benthic food-web structure and function under environmental change
Objective: To identify changes in empirical food-web structure and function in benthicpelagic communities across gradients of environmental stress/anthropogenic disturbance and recovery (including climatic impacts)

Position 2: The importance of local habitats for maintaining structural and
functional biodiversity in coastal ecosystems
Objective: To analyse and characterise structural and functional diversity in selected coastal habitats as a basis for understanding temporal and spatial variability, connectivity and vulnerability of the coastal ecosystem, including links throughout the food web.

We invite applications from students interested in marine ecology with an emphasis on experiments and observations, and with a relevant background in biology, ecology or environmental sciences. An ideal candidate is highly motivated, shows enthusiasm for scientific work and can work both independently and as a member of a larger research team.
Previous experience in fieldwork, ecological data analysis and knowledge of general ecology are desired qualities of the applicant. The candidate is also expected to have good communication skills and be fluent in English.

  • Candidates should have a MSc degree in marine biology or ecology (or other relevant field of science). Candidates may apply prior to obtaining their master’s degree, but cannot begin before having received it.
  • Eligible applicants must not have resided more than 12 months in Finland during the last 3 years. The 3 years will be counted from the date applicants are selected. Compulsory national service and/or short stays such as holidays are not taken into account.
  • Eligible applicants need to be in the first 4 years (full-time equivalent research experience) of their career and not awarded a PhD at the time of their (first) recruitment. Full-time equivalent research experience is measured from the date when a researcher obtained the degree, which would formally entitle him or her to embark on a doctorate, either in the country in which the degree was obtained or in the country in which the researcher is recruited.
  • The selected applicant must be accepted to the Åbo Akademi University PhD program, requirements include e.g. grade of MSc thesis and studies.

Application procedure

Please submit your application no later than 31 October 2015, by email to the Principal investigators :

Professor Erik Bonsdorff ( and Dr Marie Nordström

Applications must be sent as a single pdf file containing all materials to be given consideration.
The application must be in English or Swedish, and include:
• A letter motivating the application (cover letter)
• CV (summarizing the applicant’s education, previous positions and academic work, including scientific publications)
• Copies of educational certificates, transcript of records
• Documentation of proficiency in English
• Names and contact details of 2-3 references (name, relation to candidate and e-mail)
• Other material that you would like to be included in the evaluation

In addition, please arrange for 2-3 letters of recommendation to be sent directly to the PIs by email.
In your application, please indicate which of the positions you are interested in, if both; please indicate the preferred position.

Applications and recommendations received after the deadline will not be considered.
All interested candidates irrespective of gender, race, disability, religion or ethnic background are encouraged to apply.
Further information
For further information:

  • please contact the Principal Investigators Professor Erik Bonsdorff ( and Dr Marie Nordström (
  • check the offer’s presentation



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