Postdoctoral Researcher in ocean/atmosphere extreme weather events

LocationZurich, Zurich region, Switzerland

Your Mission

Postdoctoral Researcher in ocean/atmosphere extreme weather events

The Environmental Physics Group is a vibrant interdisciplinary team of researchers studying climate and oceans from regional to global scales.

Project background

One focus of the group is the investigation of oceanic extreme events, such as marine heatwaves. We are thereby particularly interested in studying how (atmospheric and oceanic) weather and climate variability forces these extremes and how these extremes feed back to larger scales, making such events e.g., more persistent. To this end, we are searching for a postdoctoral researcher in ocean/atmosphere extreme weather events within the framework of the XEBUS project funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation and the COMFORT project ( ) funded by the European Commission.

The overarching goal of the XEBUS project is to understand and quantify extreme events associated with warming (marine heat waves), ocean acidification and oxygen loss and their impact on biogeochemistry, ecosystems, and climate. We thereby focus on the California and Humboldt Current Systems as these regions are particularly sensitive to such extremes. The core tool for this study is a newly developed high-resolution Regional Earth System Model based on the coupling of the Regional Oceanic Modeling System (ROMS) with the regional atmospheric model COSMO.

Job description

The successful applicant will work on the refinement and application of the Regional Earth System Model, focusing on the investigation the processes that give rise to these oceanic extremes and that determine their intensity, persistence, and recurrence both in the past and future. A key question of interest is the determination of the relative roles of local-scale weather-induced changes in coastal upwelling versus the large-scale forcing associated with the El Niño/Southern Oscillation in generating heat waves along the U.S. and Peru/Chilean west coasts. Furthermore, what are the coupled ocean-atmosphere processes that maintain such events and make them such long-lasting? The postdoc will be part of our “Extremes” team consisting of three Ph.D. students and two postdocs, working on different aspects of ocean extremes across different regions.

The postdoctoral researcher will work in the Environmental Physics group of Prof. Nicolas Gruber and collaborate closely with Dr. Matthias Münnich (senior scientist). The starting date of this position is early 2020. The position is guaranteed for two years with the possibility for a third-year extension.

Your profile

The ideal applicant has a Ph.D. degree in atmospheric, oceanic and/or climate sciences, environmental physics or a closely related discipline with substantial expertise in modeling, preferably with atmosphere or ocean models. You have very good oral and written English skills, you are a good communicator, you like to work in an interdisciplinary and international environment, and you have demonstrated the ability to lead projects and write publications.

ETH Zurich

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.


We look forward to receiving your online application including a CV, a statement of research interest, and the names of two academic referees until December 15, 2019, but the position stays open until filled.

For further information about the position please contact Prof. Nicolas Gruber at nicolas.gruber[at] or visit our website ?" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"> .


In your application, please refer to and reference JobID 46357.