Open Ph.D. position at the University of Roma

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Here is an advertisement for an open PhD position at the University of Roma for a project led by Paolo Ballato and Claudio Faccenna. I am collaborating in the project.

Ph.D. position at the Department of Science (Section Geology) of the University of Roma

Deciphering the Mantle Contribution on Surface uplift in the Atlas-Meseta system (Morocco).

The idea that mantle flow dynamics may contribute to the topographic development of orogens has changed our vision on mountain building processes and inspired an increasing number of modelling studies. Isolating and documenting such a contribution however, has been proved to be difficult, especially in continental settings where the paleontological record is not as determinant as in marine systems. This research proposal aims to decipher the influence of mantle flow on the topographic growth of the Atlas-Meseta system of Morocco. There, the occurrence of several hundred of meters of mantle driven uplift, offers the possibility to investigate magnitude, timing and rates of surface uplift, by means of a multidisciplinary approach involving recent advancements on stratigraphy, geomorphology, geochronology, and low-temperature thermochronology. The outcome of this field- and laboratory-based approach will be finally integrated for developing an analogue geodynamic model and gain more insights into the mechanisms of mantle flow. Specifically, the candidate student will quantify longitudinal and latitudinal spatio-temporal patterns of surface uplift and regional tilting induced by mantle flow along two transects across the Atlas-Meseta system. In addition, the expected results will provide geological information that will be used for calibrating a final geodynamic analogue model, which will be of general interest for unravelling the evolution of mountain belts that are not supported by orogenic roots.


Paolo Ballato and Claudio Faccenna (University of Roma Tre)


Taylor Schildgen (GFZ Poytsdam), Wolfgang Schwanghart (University of Potsdam), Giuditta Fellin (ETH Zurich), Francesca Funiciello and Federico Rossetti (University of Roma Tre)


The successful candidate must have high motivation, a MSc degree in Geology, Earth Sciences or equivalent, solid basic knowledge in field geology, geomorphology, stratigraphy and tectonics. Basic knowledge in ArcGIS and MATLAB are also required. Applicants must be also proficient in spoken and written English and have teamwork skills.

Information and application

To apply, please send a cover letter clarifying your overall motivation together with your curriculum vitae and names, telephone numbers, and e-mail addresses of two referees to Paolo Ballato (, before June 18th.

Conditions of employment

The project will start on November 1st as part of the University of Roma Tre Ph.D. programme (34th cycle) and will last 3 years. The scholarship has an annual amount of 13.638,47 Euro (social security fee included) and is increased (+50%) for periods of study or research abroad.

If you have any questions regarding this offer please feel free to contact Paolo Ballato ( and/or Claudio Faccenna (


Two positions in Geomorphology and Cosmogenic Nuclides in Dirk Scherler’s group

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Two positions in Geomorphology and Cosmogenic Nuclides in Dirk Scherler’s group

Dirk Scherler, co-developer of TopoToolbox, has recently been granted the ERC-project “Climate sensitivity of glacial landscape dynamics (COLD)”. The main aim of COLD is to quantify how erosion rates in glacial landscapes vary with climate change and how such changes affect the dynamics of mountain glaciers. Now, he is inviting applications for 2 PhD positions at the German Research Centre for Geosciences (GFZ) in Potsdam.

Please find more details here:

Application deadline is 15th November 2017.

First Open Call of Geo.X – PhD and PostDoc positions in “Geo Data Science”

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Geo.X network

Geo.X, a Berlin-Potsdam based research cluster, advertises 14 positions in a new research school. The focus of this research school is on the interdisciplinary area of Data Science as a methodological research area within the geoscientific research topics Natural Hazards and Risks and Geo-Bio-Interactions. As readers of this blog, I am sure, these positions will certainly be of interest to many of you.

Please find further information here and apply here.