Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL
The Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL is part of the ETH Domain. Approximately 600 people work on the sustainable use and protection of the environment and on the handling of natural hazards.

The Research Unit Biodiversity and Conservation Biology studies the diversity of life, from genetic diversity to species and habitat diversity, as well as their interactions. In collaboration with partners such as federal, cantonal and local authorities, we elaborate scientific knowledge for management strategies for the conservation of biodiversity and the preservation of natural resources in Switzerland and internationally. In the framework of the new WSL Biodiversity Center, the research group ‘Habitat dynamics’ is searching for the duration of one year, starting in late autumn 2022, for a (f/m/d)
PostDoc on “Effects of land-use intensification on biodiversity dynamics in Swiss grasslands” (80–100%)
In Switzerland, traditionally managed grasslands are part of the Alps’ cultural landscape. However, lowland grasslands have been intensified over the past decades. In contrast to the general perception that grasslands in mountainous regions are still traditionally managed and harbor a rich biodiversity, intensification is currently also increasing there.

You will use repeated remote-sensing data for quantifying land-use changes, and link this to multi-taxa time series data (e.g. vascular plants, bryophytes, butterflies, molluscs, birds) from the major national monitoring programs to explore nationwide biodiversity changes along environmental gradients over the past two decades. With the project team’s close contacts to the Swiss Federal Agencies for the Environment and Agriculture, the results can directly impact conservation policy and rise attention of authorities, politics and the public. The goal is to publish at least one scientific publication in an applied or conservation-oriented journal, as well as outreach publications. In this interdisciplinary project you will collaborate closely with researchers from the ‘Dynamik Macroecology” group of WSL. You will further work in close collaboration with a postdoc of another WSL Biodiversity Center-promoted project on the impacts of woody encroachment on habitat structures and biodiversity in Switzerland at WSL Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research SLF in Davos (for more details please visit project overview).
You have acquired a doctorate in an ecological science field and you are familiar with statistical analyzes that relate temporal changes to environmental factors. You have experiences in managing large data sets. You are motivated and skilled in writing scientific publications. You feel comfortable collaborating with mostly national stakeholders. A well-structured, conceptual and independent working attitude is your strength, as well as teamwork and the capability for communication.

Please send your complete application to Michèle Bucher, Human Resources WSL, by uploading the requested documents on our webpage. Applications via email will not be considered. If you are interested in either of the above projects, please indicate it in your cover letter. Steffen Boch, steffen.boch(at) will be happy to answer any questions or offer further information. The WSL strives to increase the proportion of women in its employment, which is why qualified women are particularly called upon to apply for this position.
Zürcherstrasse 111, CH-8903 Birmensdorf