PhD Student

Last application date
Dec 15, 2020 00:59
WE13 - Department of Geology
Limited duration
Master in Geology
Occupancy rate
Vacancy type
Research staff

Job description

Starting from January/February 2021, one fully funded PhD position (4 years) is available in the research group (, a part of the Renard Centre of Marine Geology (RCMG; Department of Geology, Ghent University). The project supervisor is Prof. M. Van Daele, but the project will involve collaborations with other research groups.

The project’s main goal is to develop sediment-analysis workflows that will allow both efficient and detailed analysis of turbidites triggered by geo- and climate hazards, in order to accurately reconstruct these events, their magnitude and timelines. These workflows will have X-ray (micro) computed tomography ((µ)CT) as a main pillar, supported by other (fast) scanning techniques (e.g., XRF scanning, multi-sensor core logging), and strategically complemented by destructive analysis on subsamples (e.g., grain-size analysis, bulk organic geochemistry). The research will be based on case studies, including (mega)turbidites triggered by earthquakes (subaerial and subaquatic failures), floods and lahars, in Chilean and Alaskan lakes, for which samples are available. They will, however, be complemented with additional case studies during the course of the project. The PhD student will receive considerable liberty to develop his/her own research ideas within the general aim of the project.

Profile of the candidate

  • You hold a Master degree in geology or similar;
  • Highly motivated to do a PhD and have a passion for scientific research;
  • Strong interest in sedimentology and natural hazards;
  • Motivated to work with sediments in a laboratory, but are not afraid to use programming and statistical methods for data analysis;
  • Flexible team player with the capacity to work independently and take initiative where necessary;
  • Creative, critical and have great problem-solving skills;
  • Strong research and illustration skills, illustrated by your master thesis;
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English.

How to apply

Send an e-mail to Prof. M. Van Daele () with “PhD application Turbidites-CT” in the subject line, and the following documents:

  • Your CV, including detailed study results (in pdf format);
  • A short (max 2 pages) letter of motivation explaining why you apply for the PhD and including contact details of two potential referees (e.g., supervisor during Master thesis) (in pdf format);
  • The full text of your Master thesis (in pdf format);
  • A transcript of the required degree (if already in your possession). If you have a foreign diploma in a language other than our national languages (Dutch, French or German) or English, please add a translation in one of the mentioned languages.

As Ghent University maintains an equal opportunities and diversity policy, everyone is encouraged to apply for this position. Shortlisted applicants will be invited for an interview.