MeteoSwiss in collaboration with the research group “Climate and Water Cycle'' led by Prof. Christoph Schär at ETH Zürich is offering a
PhD position on land-surface model development
The land surface influences the state of the overlying atmosphere considerably and thus plays a major role for weather and climate. The partitioning of the surface energy balance and the vertical transport of soil water are currently treated in a very crude way in many atmospheric models. This potentially leads to large biases in near-surface quantities. The aim of the PhD is to evaluate and improve the land-surface model TERRA_ML coupled to COSMO, to be used for operational numerical weather predictions at MeteoSwiss and for regional climate modeling at ETH Zürich. The targeted work includes evaluation of recent developments within TERRA_ML, own model development, simulations, statistical analysis, interpretation of results, and publication of results in peer-reviewed journals. The position will be jointly supervised by MeteoSwiss and ETH Zürich. You will find yourself in an experienced research team, have access to high-performance computing systems, and will be linked to ongoing international and national initiatives.
We are looking for an independent, result-oriented person. Requirements include: an education in atmospheric or climate sciences, hydrology or a related discipline (e.g. environmental sciences, physics, computational sciences), experience in programming (e.g. Fortran, Python, possibly OpenACC), a solid background in mathematics and ideally in data analysis, proficient writing skills in English, and good communication skills.
We offer an attractive environment both at a leading climate research institute and an operational weather forecast provider, an excellent infrastructure, interesting activities in a young and ambitious research team, and a friendly working atmosphere. The ideal starting date for the position is May or June 2017. The position is for a period of three years.
For further information, please contact Dr. Linda Schlemmer ( or Dr. Oliver Fuhrer ( and/or visit our websites: and

Please submit your application online including a cover letter explaining your motivation, a CV, transcripts of academic records, names and contact details of two references (as PDF files) with attention to: ETH Zurich, Mr Olivier Meyrat, Human Resources. The evaluation of applications will start on April 18, 2017 and proceed until the position is filled.