Switzerland : 2 PhD positions in Soil Chemistry/Isotope Geochemistry at Swiss Federal Institute of Technology

We are inviting applications for two PhD student positions based jointly in the Soil Chemistry Group (Prof. Ruben Kretzschmar) and the Isotope Geochemistry Group (Prof. Bernard Bourdon) at ETH Zurich. The research topic will be the development of stable mercury (Hg) isotopes as novel tracers for biogeochemical Hg cycling in soil environments. Mercury is an important pollutant element and Hg isotope ratios provide a promising new tool to trace Hg sources and transformations in natural ecosystems. One PhD project will focus mainly on the investigation of field samples, whereas the other PhD project is dedicated to perform laboratory based experiments. Both project parts will be strongly linked and use the state-of-the-art facilities of the Soil Chemistry and Isotope Geochemistry laboratories at ETH Zurich.
We are seeking highly motivated candidates with a strong interest to perform interdisciplinary research at the interface of soil chemistry and isotope geochemistry. Previous experience in these fields and/or analytical chemistry would be beneficial. Applicants should hold a MSc degree (or equivalent) in geosciences, environmental sciences, chemistry, geoecology, or a related discipline. Good knowledge of English is essential. Female and male candidates are equally invited to apply. Employment will be according to standard regulations of ETH Zurich (funding secured for 3 years). Start in March 2010 or upon mutual agreement.
Applicants should submit letter of application, CV, statement of research interests, copy of certificates, and addresses of 2-3 potential referees to Prof. Ruben Kretzschmar, ETH Zurich, CHN F23.1, 8092 Zurich, Switzerland (paper copy by mail or single pdf-file by e-mail to jan.wiederhold[AT] For further details on the project please contact Dr. Jan Wiederhold. Evaluation of applications will start 4.1.2010 and continue until the positions are filled.
More information on our research group can be found at

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