The West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use is a program designed to enhance the resilience of human and environmental systems to climate change and increased variability. The WASCAL Core Research Program focuses on improving the adaptive capacity of human-environmental systems in the face of climate change. The area of investigation is situated in the southern Sudanian savanna belt of West Africa, with research sites in Burkina Faso, Benin and Ghana.
Within the framework of WASCAL’s Core Research Program and its work package “Rangeland monitoring for land use management and adaptation”, they  offer a doctoral scholarship.
Effects of management and climate on forage resources in West African rangelands for the period of 3 years starting with March 1, 2012 provided the project is approved by the funding agency. The position is based at the University of Bonn, Department of Geography, Prof. S. Schmidtlein.
Research topics include: (1) assessing effects of rangeland management and the physical environment on forage resources; (2) developing a trait-based approach to link forage resources to ecosystem functioning; (3) integrating local ecological knowledge on forage resources. The successful candidate will conduct field work in the West African research sites. He/she will work in a multidisciplinary team (remote sensing, pedology, hydrology, social anthropology) and will closely collaborate with the research group on range ecology and range management (Dr. A. Linstädter, University of Cologne, Botanical Institute).
Eligibility
MSc degree or equivalent in Geography, Biology, Geoecology or related fields, with excellent academic results; Experience with empirical work in natural sciences (preferably vegetation ecology) and willingness to acquire methodical skills in social sciences; Knowledge and skills in multivariate statistics; Experience in developing countries (experience in Africa would be an advantage); Excellent command of English; Good French skills; Good team player with strong interpersonal skills; ability to work in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic environment; sensitivity and respect for diversity. Women are highly encouraged to apply.
How to Apply
African candidates are highly encouraged to apply. Applicants are requested to send the usual documents (curriculum vitae, contact details of two referees, and cover letter setting out the reasons for applying), preferably by email, to Prof Dr. Sebastian Schmidtlein, Department of Geography, University of Bonn, Meckenheimer Allee 166, 53115 Bonn, Germany, [email protected]
Deadline: January 20, 2012.
For more information, and to apply, click here.

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