ETH Zurich is looking for a doctoral student working on a 36-month PhD position related to Life Science for the academic session 2021-2022. The project is related to cocoa bean quality and the utilisation of microbial co-cultures in controlled fermentation to produce improved quality cocoa beans.
|Scholarship Sponsor||ETH Zurich|
|Scholarships level||PhD Position|
|Fellowship Period||Four years|
|Study area||Life Sciences Environment|
|Opening date||February 25, 2021|
|Closing date||July 01, 2021|
Within the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 847585, ETH Zurich is offering a 36-month PhD position for an early-stage researcher (ESR) in the area of sustainable food systems.
The project aims to carry out metabolite-based profiling of selected lactic acid bacteria and yeasts, which improve the cocoa bean quality by producing desired metabolites, using a rapid fingerprint screening method based on direct mass spectrometry in combination with conventional targeted analyses of the primary metabolites.
Two secondments, each for three months, at the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL) research and training centre Sara Ana, department La Paz, in Bolivia, are a part of this project. During the first secondments the ESR will focus on the technical optimisation of the fermentation on-site with preliminary field studies and contacts and interactions with the stakeholders, whereas the second visit will focus on assessing the functional co-cultures on field conditions. To achieve this, the ESR will be working closely with the employees in the FiBL research and training center Sara Ana in Bolivia, and will have the possibility to interact with the farmers via a local farmer’s union of cooperatives El Ceibo.
The anticipated results/outcomes of this project are to utilise combinations of functional co-cultures and desired metabolites for the production of fermented cocoa beans with improved quality and safety, along with a better profit to the cocoa farmers. The results, outcomes and applications of the project will be communicated widely in the scientific community and are they are shared with key players in the cocoa value chain.
We are offering an exciting position at the interface of science and policy. While working in an international, interdisciplinary and innovative research environment at ETH Zurich, the ESR will be jointly co-supervised by Prof. Dr Laura Nyström (Laboratory of Food Biochemistry) at ETH Zurich, Monika Schneider (FiBL), and Prof. Dr Susanne Miescher-Schwenninger (ZHAW)
The entire 36 months will be under a 100% working contract.
The PhD salary follows ETH Zurich’s regulations and will be according to EU regulations for Marie Skłodowska-Curie Early Stage Researchers. The monthly gross salary will not be lower than CHF 3920.
The successful candidate will be enrolled and will have a working contract at ETH Zurich. He/she will work in Switzerland.
The secondments will take place in FiBL research and training centre Sara Ana, department La Paz, in Bolivia
Expected starting date of the working contract: 01.10.2021.
The deadline for applications is July 01, 2021
- To perform successfully, potential candidates should ideally have an MSc degree in Food sciences (food biotechnology, food microbiology, food chemistry, analytics) or a similar field of applied life sciences.
- Good writing and communication skills are also essential.
- Early-stage researcher in the first four years (full-time equivalent) of their research careers, including the period of research training, starting at the date of obtaining the degree which would formally entitle them to embark on a doctorate either in the country in which the degree was obtained or in the country in which the initial training activities are provided
- At the time of recruitment (for call 4 = July 1, 2021) by the host organisation, researchers must not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in Switzerland for more than 12 months the three years immediately before the reference date.
- Compulsory national service and/or short stays such as holidays are not taken into account.
English: Proficient oral and written English skills are expected, Spanish: strong verbal and written skills are considered beneficial, German: desirable but not mandatory.
ETH Zurich is one of the world’s leading universities specialising in science and technology. We are renowned for our excellent education, cutting-edge fundamental research and direct transfer of new knowledge into society. Over 30,000 people from more than 120 countries find our university to be a place that promotes independent thinking and an environment that inspires excellence. Located in the heart of Europe, yet forging connections all over the world, we work together to develop solutions for the global challenges of today and tomorrow.
For submitting your online application: https://join.lszgs.uzh.ch/ (select PhD Program Science and Policy). The online application should contain all information, as indicated by the application portal. Moreover, the following documents have to be uploaded under “further documents”: 1) a letter of motivation to join a) the RESPONSE doctoral programme and b) to apply for this specific position (ESR 27), 2) a comprehensive tabular CV, and 3) transcripts of records.
If you apply for more than one RESPONSE position, please refer to them in your letter of motivation. Please note that we exclusively accept applications submitted through our online application portal. Applications via email or postal services will not be considered. For questions and further information on the position, please contact (Prof. Dr Laura Nyström [email protected]), no applications.