Postdoctoral Research Fellowship in Palaeoenvironmental Research

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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 palaeoenvironmental survey, coring, and analysis and its capacity to reconstruct past human land-use and environmental impacts. The position will be for a period of up to 3 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 how pre-colonial and colonial human land-use changed within the Philippine Archipelago, what its impacts were on tropical vegetation, and how it has left legacies for 21st century populations in the region. Its broader aim is to determine whether land-use in the tropical portions of the former Spanish Empire was enough to initiate pre-industrial earth systems feedbacks.

Candidate tasks

The successful candidate will play a central role in the project and its outputs. They will be expected to undertake and coordinate palaeoenvironmental survey and fieldwork in at least three regions of the Philippine Archipelago. The candidate will obtain palaeoenvironmental cores and samples from lake and swamp settings and exposed natural profiles. They will then coordinate their analyses for dating, various palaeoenvironmental reconstruction methodologies, and proxies of human presence in order to produce synthetic datasets of human-environment interactions on pre- and post-colonial time periods.

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 palaeoenvironmental expertise in field and laboratory methodologies. They will also work closely with key project partners Dr. Grace Baretto-Tesoro (University of the Philippines), Dr. Janelle Stevenson and Prof. Simon Haberle (The Australian National University, Canberra), and Prof. Achim Brauer (GFZ, Potsdam), among others. They will also be expected to support PhD students within the project at the Department more widely.