The Paul Scherrer Institute PSI is the largest research institute for natural and engineering sciences within Switzerland. We perform cutting‐edge research in the fields of future technologies, energy and climate, health innovation and fundamentals of nature. By performing fundamental and applied research, we work on sustainable solutions for major challenges facing society, science and economy. PSI is committed to the training of future generations. Therefore, about one quarter of our staff are post‐docs, post‐graduates or apprentices. Altogether, PSI employs 2200 people. 

The Laboratory for Energy Systems Analysis (LEA) is an interdivisional laboratory of the Nuclear Energy and Safety Research Division (NES) and the General Energy Research Division (ENE). It unites specific analytical research concerning diverse energy technologies and systems, including nuclear, fossil, and (modern) renewables. In cooperation with external partners (e.g., the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETHZ) and many others), LEA conducts environmental and economic technology assessment and energy systems analyses relevant to energy policy. 

For the Technology Assessment Group in the Laboratory for Energy Systems Analysis (LEA) we are looking for a
Postdoctoral Fellow
On the environmental assessment of decarbonization strategies in the European industry sector in the context of the Green Deal
Your tasks
You will perform environmental Life Cycle Assessment of novel industrial processes and value chains, one of the key components of the European Green Deal, on a global scale. In this context, you will integrate material flow analysis (MFA) and prospective LCA and investigate recycling and circular economy options relevant to the successful decarbonization of the European industry sector. Further, you will develop a parameterized life cycle‐based accounting framework for carbon emissions embedded in industrial products to be applied in the context of cross‐border adjustment mechanisms. To this end, you will collaborate with leading experts in the European industry sector. You will use the brightway and premise LCA frameworks, linking energy systems or integrated assessment models and LCA. Furthermore, you will develop approaches for regionalized LCA and apply these to industrial value chains worldwide to consider regional or even site‐specific boundary conditions and quantify impacts on human health and ecosystems in a regionalized way. You will also quantify resource demands regarding bulk materials, minerals, and metals crucial in the energy system and industry transition pathways. Key research questions include the identification of industrial processes and value chains compatible with European net‐zero targets; the quantification of environmental co‐benefits and adverse side‐effects of such industrial value chains from an LCA perspective; and how LCA can contribute to a fair transformation of the European industry, avoiding relocation of critical players and associated burden‐shifting.All tools and workflows will be open and FAIR. Your work will be part of a Horizon Europe project with leading research institutions and direct collaboration with industrial partners.
Your profile
  • PhD degree in natural science, industrial ecology, or engineering 
  • Several years of experience in environmental Life Cycle Assessment 
  • Specific advanced LCA skills: familiar with ecoinvent, brightway, and premise
  • Good knowledge of Python 
  • Interest in open software development 
  • Proficiency in English 
  • Basic experience in project management 
  • Independent working style
  • Communication skills to work well in a team
We offer
Our institution is based on an interdisciplinary, innovative and dynamic collaboration. You will profit from a systematic training on the job, in addition to personal development possibilities and our pronounced vocational training culture. If you wish to optimally combine work and family life or other personal interests, we are able to support you with our modern employment conditions and the on‐site infrastructure. 

Your employment contract is limited to 2 years. 

For further information, please contact Christian Bauer, phone +41 56 310 23 91. 

Please submit your application online by 3 March 2024 (including list of publications and addresses of referees) for the position as a Postdoctoral Fellow (index no. 4501‐00). 

Paul Scherrer Institut, Human Resources Management, Serdal Varol, 5232 Villigen PSI, Switzerland