Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in Land-use Characterization and Earth Systems Modeling

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The 'PANTROPOCENE: Finding a Pre-industrial Anthropocene Project' at the Department of Archaeology, Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History (MPI-SHH), Jena, Germany is pleased to announce a new vacancy for a Research Fellowship position in the characterization of prehistoric and historic land-use and its use in dynamic earth systems modelling. The position will be for a period of up to 5 years and based in Jena, Germany.

The PANTROPOCENE project is newly funded by the prestigious European Research Council and will run for the duration of the postdoctoral position. Headed by Dr. Patrick Roberts, PANTROPOCENE seeks to determine whether pre-colonial and colonial human land-use within the tropical portions of the former Spanish Empire, with particular focus on the under-represented Philippine Archipelago, initiated pre-industrial earth systems feedbacks on regional and global scales.

Candidate tasks

The successful candidate will play a central role in the project and its outputs. They will be expected to compile novel and existing archaeological, historical, and palaeoenvironmental information to build characterizations of past human land-use. In turn, they will then apply these datasets to earth systems models to determine the degree to which changes in human activities and land organisation in pre-industrial time periods may have influenced soil erosion, precipitation, temperature, and even the composition of the atmosphere.

The candidate will work in a leading global centre for archaeology, the Department of Archaeology at the MPI-SHH, renowned for combining archaeological, anthropological, geochemical, and earth systems expertise in field and laboratory methodologies. They will also work closely with key project partners Dr. Grace Baretto-Tesoro (University of the Philippines), Prof. Jed Kaplan (University of Hong Kong), and Prof. José Iriarte (University of Exeter) and will be expected to also work within the framework of ongoing international research initiatives to ensure maximum reach of results.