The Agricultural Economics and Policy Group at ETH Zurich seek a

PhD Student in Agricultural Economics

We are looking for a PhD student with a background in agricultural economics and/or agricultural sciences. Research will be conducted in the project "Economic analysis of reducing greenhouse gas emissions on farm and regional level: Evaluation of the AgroCO2ncept program in Flaachtal (Switzerland)”. Please find more information on the research project here.

In the program "AgroCO2ncept Flaachtal", farmers test the feasibility of reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions through various jointly coordinated measures in crop production, animal farming and machinery on farm and regional level. At the same time, the farmers aim at increasing their profitability through collaborative efforts in cost reduction and improved marketing of products. The goal of our research in the context of "AgroCO2ncept" is to evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of the program and to generalize experiences for better policy designs such as for climate change mitigation policies. Thus, our research contributes to develop better GHG reduction measures and policies. The successful candidate will have the opportunity to work with a wide range of secondary data (e.g. spatially explicit census data, farm-level data on GHG emissions) and will also conduct surveys and interviews. This information will be input for an agent-based modelling approach that will be used to analyze the policy program. More specifically, the agent-based model will be used to simulate the development of the individual farms, their (social-) interactions and aggregated outcomes. A transdisciplinary research approach will enable the successful candidate to interact with various stakeholders, ranging from farmers to policy makers.

The successful candidate will have a M.Sc. degree in agricultural economics, agricultural sciences or a related discipline as well as strong analytical skills. Profound knowledge of statistics, agricultural system modelling and the Swiss agricultural system are a clear plus. Proficient oral and written and English skills are expected. This project requires the candidate to be fluent in German, candidates without sufficient language skills will not be considered.

We are offering an interesting position in a transdisciplinary research project conducted in an interdisciplinary research group at a lively university environment in Zurich. The research will be carried out in a 3-year project, and will be accompanied by a PhD program comprising courses in economics and agricultural economics. The successful candidate will be supervised by Prof. Dr. Robert Finger and Dr. Robert Huber. Salary and social benefits are provided according to ETH Zurich rules. Preferred starting date is September to October 2017.

We are looking forward to your online application including a CV, transcripts, copies of all Bachelor and Master certificates, letter of motivation as well as two signed letter of recommendation. Please note that we exclusively accept applications submitted through our online application portal. Applications via email or postal services will not be considered. Should you run into difficulties when submitting your application please send an email to for advice.

Further information can be obtained from Katarina Kliestenec (, no applications). Please apply online to ETH Zurich, Prof. Dr. Robert Finger, CH-8092 Zurich, by August 15, 2017. Earlier applications are welcome, outstanding candidates will already be interviewed before the final deadline.