Announcements > Postdoc / Scientific Coordinator 5yrs: East Africa Agroecology & SES Modelling

The Institute of Geobotany at the Leibniz University of Hannover, Germany invites applications for the position of a Researcher (Postdoc, m/f/d) as Project Coordinator in Agroecology/Social-Ecological Systems Modelling (Salary Scale 13 TV-L, 100 %) to be appointed on the 1st November 2020. The position is limited to 5 years.

Keywords: Social-ecological systems modelling (e.g. agent-/individual-based models, causal loop diagrams), Entomology, Landscape ecology, Agroecology, African farming

The Institute of Geobotany is coordinating the multi-actor Horizon 2020 project UPSCALE: Upscaling the benefits of push-pull technology for sustainable intensification of agriculture in East Africa (

Closing the yield gap in African smallholder agriculture is a critical challenge which must be met in order to achieve food security goals for millions of farmers. Nature-based solutions that harness the benefits of biodiversity for productive, low input and climate-resilient agriculture are promising avenues for sustainable intensification. Through its success in staple crops, the push-pull technology in mixed livestock-cereal farms in Eastern Africa is an essential discovery for food security and environmentally friendly agricultural management. The UPSCALE project, a consortium of 18 European and African partners, aims to harness the potential of push-pull as a key to sustainable intensification in sub-Saharan Africa.

We are seeking an outstanding and highly motivated scientist to coordinate social-ecological field work and modelling across 5 countries in East Africa. You will supervise PhD students and support Country coordinators performing entomological field work on push-pull farms. In addition, you will synthesize agroecological research results. A particular focus will be on modelling the consequences and social-ecological feedback loops of upscaling push-pull technology across African landscapes in the face of changing human and environmental conditions. You will be expected to contribute to project deliverables and publish research results in international journals.

The position will involve short research stays in East Africa and coordination among African and European partners. As such, the ability to communicate in English and the willingness to travel and work abroad are essential, within the framework of all necessary safety requirements due to the current pandemic.

Required qualifications
• University degree (MSc, Diploma) in ecology, biology, environmental science, agricultural science or related field
• A PhD in a relevant field is expected
Further expected qualifications:
• Fluency in English
• Profound statistical and programming skills, preferably in R
• Demonstrated efficient writing skills in English through publication of research in international journals
• Demonstrated ability to work well independently and in a team
Additional qualifications:
• Familiarity with GIS, especially for landscape ecological analyses
• Familiarity with ecological field work particularly in entomology and the study of plant-insect interactions
• Experience modelling complex social-ecological systems using quantitative and/or qualitative tools (e.g. agent-/individual-based models, causal loop diagrams, approximate Bayesian computation)
• Demonstrated ability to coordinate, organize and troubleshoot scientific activities among multiple partners and to collaborate internationally
• Experience pursuing projects and field work in Africa especially East Africa

As an equal opportunities employer, Leibniz University Hannover intends to promote women and men. For this reason, suitably qualified women are specifically invited to apply. Preference will be given to equally qualified applicants with disabilities.

For any queries please contact Prof. Emily Poppenborg Martin (E-Mail:

Please submit your application in English (subject "Postdoc position UPSCALE") including a letter of interest, a curriculum vitae, a list of publications, copies of certificates, and the names and addresses of two references able to evaluate the applicant's qualifications for the position in electronic form (merged into a single pdf file) until 2nd September 2020 to

or alternatively by postal mail to:
Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Universität Hannover
Institut für Geobotanik
Prof. Emily Poppenborg Martin
Nienburger Straße 17
30167 Hannover

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