Open PhD position at the Centre of Evolutionary and Functional Ecology (CEFE), University of Montpellier. The position is funded via a competitive exam through the doctoral school GAIA at the University of Montpellier with a salary according to the common French standards. The start date for the position is 1st October 2021.

PhD title “Interacting effects of soil biodiversity and climate change on ecosystem functioning in a Mediterranean forest”

The PhD position is part of the SoilForEUROPE project ( including several partners from France, Germany, Belgium, Sweden and The Netherlands. SoilForEUROPE aims at understanding the relationships between tree species diversity and soil diversity, and their consequences for ecosystem functioning across major European forest types under climate change. The PhD is part of an ongoing large experiment with model ecosystems of Mediterranean forests and varying diversity of soil macrofauna communities exposed to extreme drought at the CNRS European Ecotron in Montpellier, a world leading controlled environmental facility for ecosystem research. The thesis will mainly focus on plant responses, but may additionally include soil microbial activity or ecosystem -level carbon, nutrient and water cycling depending on the student’s specific interests. Supervisors are Stephan Hättenschwiler and Alex Milcu.

Place of work:
Centre d’Ecologie Fonctionnelle et Evolutive
1919, route de Mende F-34293 Montpellier

The Centre of Evolutionary and Functional Ecology (CEFE) is one of the largest and most dynamic French research centers in Ecology. Its mission is to perform independent, fundamental scientific research on the dynamics of biodiversity, planetary environmental change, and sustainable development.


– Willingness to prepare and participate in a competitive exam
– Excellent Master degree in biology / ecology / plant ecophysiology or any related fields
– Experience and autonomy in experimental work
– Skills in data analysis and statistics
– Proficient English language skills and writing experience

We offer:

– Top level research at a research centre with excellent international reputation
– Excellent technical facilities
– Work in an ambitious ongoing experiment with international connections
– A flexible research agenda offering the possibility to develop own ideas
– Support and optimal training courses by our graduate school GAIA at the University of Montpellier

Enquiries and further information:
Dr. Stephan Hättenschwiler ( / +33 467613349

More details about the PhD @
(see “filière EFSA” under subjects for PhD selection)

Via the web page of the doctoral school:
Under “future PhD student”, “Application to ED GAIA”, and then “how to apply”.
Contact Stephan Hättenschwiler in parallel.

Closing date for applications:
Applications must be submitted on the web page of the doctoral school GAIA by 12.05.2021 the latest

Le contenu de cette offre est la responsabilité de ses auteurs. Pour toute question relative à cette offre en particulier (date, lieu, mode de candidature, etc.), merci de les contacter directement. Un email de contact est disponible: stephan.hattenschwiler@cefe.

Pout toute autre question, vous pouvez contacter