Paid Internship in Environmental Microbiology 100% for 6 months

    Univeristy of Zurich
    Biological sciencesBiology
    First Stage Researcher (R1)
    30/04/2021 09:00 - Europe/Brussels
    Switzerland › Zürich


Research will focus on the interaction of oxic and anoxic aquatic microbial communities, with special focus on cyanobacteria and sulfur bacteria, in laboratory-based ecosystems. Analysing microbial responses to multifarious environmental change, including the responses of species abundances and ecosystem function, is a major goal of this project. Responses to pulse and press perturbations will be analysed in regards to resistance and resilience that fall in the field of global change microbiology. Methods include cultivation, standard molecular methods (DNA/RNA extraction, qPCR etc.), (automatic) oxygen- and sulfur-compound measurements, Next-generation sequencing of metagenomes and long-read amplicon sequencing, analysis of sequencing raw-data to downstream-bioinformatics. These features provide opportunities to explore important and exciting new theories in microbial ecology and evolution. The project will be embedded in the Predictive Ecology research group of Owen Petchey and will be supervised by Marcel Suleiman. Our team has the general aim to advance understanding of microbial ecology and evolution in order to facilitate and improve predictions of how bacteria and their environment respond to environmental change.


The position will be held in the Department of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies at the University of Zurich, with access to state-of-the-art infrastructure, a diverse and interactive scientific atmosphere, and an international, English-speaking working environment with opportunities for professional development.

The position is for six months. There may be a possibility to continue with the research in the context of studying for a PhD.


  • Knowledge of microbiology, specially cultivation and metabolism of (phototrophic) aerobic and anaerobic bacteria.
  • A relevant Masters Degree in biology or closely related field.
  • Ability to apply standard methods of microbial community manipulation and analysis, including DNA/RNA extraction, (q)PCR, and related methods
  • Analysis of NGS data will be required in the position and therefore basic proficiency in data analysis/statistics will be an advantage (e.g. R Studio)
  • Ability to effectively specify questions, hypotheses, and goals.
  • Ability to work in a team and independently.
  • Relevant publications in peer-reviewed scientific journal(s) is a plus.


How to apply 

Application will be reviewed until 31 April 2021. Send your application as a single pdf file to Maja Weilenmann (maja.weilenmann@ieu.uzh.ch). Include in your application: a cover letter explaining your interest in and suitability for the position, your CV, a copy of your Bachelor and Master diploma and courses taken, and the names, institutional affiliations, email addresses and phone numbers of two referees. If you have inquiries about the position please contact Dr. Marcel Suleiman (marcel.suleiman@ieu.uzh.ch).


The city of Zurich is regarded as having high quality of life and standard of living with remuneration to match. During hot summers the lake, river, and many outdoor pools provide cooling opportunities, and the close-by Alps cater for many summer and winter outdoor activities. Local and regional (Europe) rail networks meet at Zurich’s main train station and provide convenient and low environmental-impact travel to many European cities. The city’s international airport is convenient when required.


Starting date is as soon as possible, but to be determined by mutual agreement.

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Work location(s)
1 position(s) available at
Department of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies at the University of Zurich
Winterthurerstrasse 190

EURAXESS offer ID: 625464


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