Job announcement
Goethe University Frankfurt am Main and Senckenberg Museum

Postdoc - biogeography of deep-sea benthos invertebrates

Application deadline 25.04.2017
[printable version .pdf]

With around 46,000 students and 4,600 employees, the Goethe University in Frankfurt is the largest university in the state of Hessen and an internationally renowned, important regional employer. Numerous quality and performance oriented internal reforms have been initiated in the recent years. The reorganized campuses for natural sciences and humanities offer an ideal environment for research and education. Since 2008, the Goethe University is a foundation under public law and enjoys full administrative autonomy.

The project Beneficial (Biogeography of the northwest Pacific fauna. A benchmark study for estimations of alien invasions into the Arctic Ocean in times of rapid climate chance) (Prof.Dr.Angelika Brandt, Marine Zoology) at the Goethe University Frankfurt am Main (Senckenberg Museum) invites applications for a

Postdoctoral Position
(E13 TV-G-U)

This position is available for three years, starting 1.6.2017 (subject to the allocation of funds). The fixed-term employment of the academic staff is subject to the provisions of the Temporary Science Employment Law (Wissenschaftszeitvertragsgesetz) and the Hessian Higher Education Act (Hessisches Hochschulgesetz).

The aim of the project and main responsibility of the successful candidate will be the establishment of biogeographic distribution maps for most identified taxa (key species) and contribution to their publication in the form of scientific publications, a biogeographic atlas as well as their provision to online repositories (OBIS, GBIF). We are looking for a biodiversity data scientist to work on a large, multi-campaign dataset of deep-sea benthos invertebrates from the Northwest Pacific and adjacent marginal seas.

Required skills:

  • Advanced university degree (Masters level or higher) in Earth Sciences (preferably Marine Biology or Geography) or informatics or bioinformatics
  • At least 2 years of relevant working experience in biological data management of which at least one year at the international level.
  • intimate knowledge of biodiversity data handling
  • excellent proven skills in database software such as Microsoft Access
  • profound experience using Geographic Information System (GIS)
  • expertise in R
  • competence in biostatistics
  • willingness to conduct collaborative work with taxonomic experts from around the world
  • good communication skills, ability to write and speak clearly and effectively, including the ability to draft reports in a concise style and communicate complex scientific information to a broader audience – via visual, written and verbal modes.
  • very good inter-personal skills and ability to maintain effective partnerships and working relations within a multi-cultural environment; ability to work collaboratively as part of a team to achieve organisational goals
  • excellent knowledge of English (spoken and written)

Advantageous skills:

  • broad knowledge of marine (preferably deep-sea) ecology, the biology of its inhabitants, and general oceanography
  • proficiency in species distribution modelling
  • knowledge in the use of and data provision to the Ocean Biogeographic Information System (OBIS) and the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF)
  • practical familiarity with ocean observing techniques, data management and information generation activities.


  • data and metadata collection, data quality control and assurance, data harmonisation; data integration, standardization and normalization
  • database development and providing open access
  • data reconciliation and occurrence data enrichment with environmental data
  • support geospatial and taxonomic analyses; writing scripts, geographic indexing, calculation of taxonomic and other diversity indices;
  • assisting in the implementation of statistical analysis tools (R, Python).
  • supporting in data publication, data quality control; including maintenance of guidelines on best practices and manuals
  • contributing to events, meeting reports and scientific papers


Please submit your application, containing a cover letter that states your experience and motivation and your curriculum vitae until 25.04.2017 at the latest to: (c/o Prof. Dr. Angelika Brandt, Fachbereich Biowissenschaften, Johann Wolfgang Goethe-University Frankfurt am Main and Senckenberg Museum). The University advocates gender equality and therefore strongly encourages women to apply. Scientists with disabilities will have preference if equally qualified.

© 19.04.2017 Deutsche Zoologische Gesellschaft e.V., DZG