Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL
The Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL is a part of the ETH domain. Approximately 500 people work on the sustainable use and protection of the environment and on the handling of natural hazards.
The Research Unit Landscape Dynamics studies patterns, causes and processes of landscape change. For the project “Origin-Alps“, WSL is searching (start date between 1. July and 1. October 2017) for a
PhD – Multifaceted approaches to conservation planning of the alpine flora
You will explore spatial correlation patterns between floristic biodiversity facets (taxonomic, functional and phylogenetic) for richness, uniqueness, endemism, and rarity across the Alps. You will explore to what degree the existing reserve network is capable of conserving this rich floristic diversity including its rare and unique elements and its floristic compositions, and what additional regions would ideally be added to improve the conservation of floristic diversity including phylogenetic and functional aspects. You will investigate how the existing network of protected areas should be optimized to secure the plant diversity of the European Alps under future climate and land use change scenarios, and by this you will contribute to the development of novel, large datasets. You will strongly collaborate with project teams in Switzerland and France.
You have a Master’s degree in a relevant area (ecology, biology, phylogenetic or environmental sciences), you are interested in biodiversity and macroecology, and you have a sound knowledge of statistics and of ecological and/or biodiversity research. You are highly motivated and experienced in working independently and well-organized, and you have good communication skills in English (Knowledge of French or/and German is helpful but not mandatory). You will work in both involved labs in Grenoble (CNRS) and Birmensdorf.

Please send your complete application using to Sabine Hirt, Human Resources WSL. Niklaus Zimmermann ( or Wilfried Thuiller ( will be happy to answer any questions or offer further information. The WSL strives to in-crease the proportion of women in its employment, which is why qualified women are particularly called upon to apply for this position.
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