PHD POSITION: Enhancing Seasonal Predictability of Impactful Weather Extremes in the Mediterranean Using AI

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Are you curious about making a contribution to enhancing the predictability of seasonal excessive climate hazards, reminiscent of warmth waves, droughts and wildfires, to raised equip society in coping with present and future dangers? Please apply at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.

FTE: 0.8 – 1

Job description

Working inside a big EU venture, the you’ll do analysis resulting in a PhD thesis with a concentrate on enhancing seasonal predictability of affect related climate extremes over the Mediterranean. The Mediterranean area is extensively acknowledged as a local weather change hotspot, experiencing accelerated warming in comparison with international averages and upward tendencies in excessive climate together with drought. Present state-of-the-art local weather fashions battle to precisely predict these extremes, which has vital repercussions for numerous socio-economic sectors (well being, agriculture, water useful resource administration, ecology, and tourism). Rising synthetic intelligence (AI) strategies supply promising avenues to handle these challenges.

You’ll develop into a part of the Local weather Extremes analysis group ( inside the Institute for Environmental Research (IVM). Along with colleagues at IVM, the Netherlands eScience heart, the Potsdam Institute for Local weather Impression Analysis (PIK) and different (inter)nationwide companions, you’ll apply revolutionary AI strategies to intensive local weather datasets, encompassing each observations and local weather fashions. The first goal is to boost seasonal predictability within the Mediterranean area, a crucial step in creating efficient early warning methods tailor-made to numerous affect sectors of curiosity. You’re anticipated to put in writing peer-reviewed papers as partial fulfilment of the PhD thesis, to take part in worldwide conferences and common venture conferences within the japanese Mediterranean, and to help in some restricted instructing actions.

This analysis is a part of the EU-funded venture PREVENT (Improved predictability of Mediterranean extremes from seasonal to decadal timescales), carried out on the IVM at VU Amsterdam. PREVENT leverages the experience of a analysis consortium comprising 9 universities and analysis institutes, uniting specialists in local weather modelling, affect modelling, machine studying, and statistics, with native stakeholders within the Mediterranean. The final word purpose of this analysis is to boost short- to medium-term adaptation decision-making by means of improved seasonal and decadal predictions in a altering local weather, thereby enhancing resilience in each societies and ecosystems.

Your duties

  • analysing giant observational and local weather mannequin knowledge units
  • making use of machine studying strategies, together with explainable ai, to those datasets to enhance seasonal forecasts of affect related climate extremes
  • collaborate with local weather and AI specialists to interpret findings and optimize outcomes
  • writing a PhD thesis consisting of three or 4 scientific papers
  • working with colleagues of the venture consortium, contributing to venture reporting, attending venture conferences in Mediterranean
  • helping in some restricted instructing actions at IVM


  • MSc diploma in computational sciences or comparable (ideally with demonstrable affinity to local weather sciences)
  • wonderful abilities in programming and utilizing giant datasets (ideally in Python). Expertise with Excessive Efficiency Computing (or curiosity in studying) is fascinating
  • familiarity with state-of-the-art Machine Studying methods
  • sturdy quantitative methodological abilities
  • good communication abilities, because the work entails collaboration in a bigger crew of worldwide and multi-disciplinary researchers and stakeholders

What are we providing?

A difficult place in a socially concerned organisation. On full-time foundation the remuneration quantities to a minimal gross month-to-month wage of €2,770 (PhD) and a most €3,539 (PhD), relying in your schooling and expertise. The job profile: is predicated on the college job rating system and is vacant for not less than 0.8 FTE.

The preliminary employment contract will have an effect on a interval of 1 12 months. After a passable analysis of the preliminary appointment, the contract will likely be prolonged for a complete length of three years and 9 months (45 months).
Moreover, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam affords wonderful fringe advantages and numerous schemes and rules to advertise work/life stability, reminiscent of:

  • a most of 41 days of annual depart based mostly on full-time employment
  • 8% vacation allowance and eight.3% end-of-year bonus
  • stable pension scheme (ABP)
  • contribution to commuting bills
  • non-compulsory mannequin for designing a personalised advantages package deal

About Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

The ambition of Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is evident: to contribute to a greater world by means of excellent schooling and ground-breaking analysis. We try to be a college the place private growth and dedication to society play a number one function. A college the place individuals from totally different disciplines and backgrounds collaborate to attain improvements and to generate new information. Our instructing and analysis embody the complete spectrum of educational endeavor – from the humanities, the social sciences and the pure sciences by means of to the life sciences and the medical sciences.

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is dwelling to greater than 31,000 college students. We make use of over 5,000 people. The VU campus is well accessible and situated within the coronary heart of Amsterdam’s Zuidas district, a very inspiring atmosphere for instructing and analysis.

We’re an inclusive college neighborhood. Range is one among our most necessary values. We imagine that participating in worldwide actions and welcoming college students and employees from all kinds of backgrounds enhances the standard of our schooling and analysis. We’re at all times searching for individuals who can enrich our world with their very own distinctive views and experiences.

The School of Science
Working on the School of Science means working along with college students, PhD candidates and scientists who’re targeted on their self-discipline, but even have a broad view of the world. We’re happy with the collegial working atmosphere inside the school, which is characterised by an bold and pragmatic angle with dedication to the larger image. On the School of Science, scientists and college students work on basic and complicated social points for a sustainable and wholesome future. From forest fires to large knowledge, from weight problems to malnutrition, from genetics to prescription drugs and from molecules to the moon: our instructing and analysis cowl the complete breadth of the pure sciences. Scientific instructing and analysis is extremely experimental, technical, computational and interdisciplinary in nature. Because of this we collaborate extensively with main analysis institutes and business. The school has over 11,000 college students learning throughout 40 academic programmes and employs over 1,600 employees unfold over 10 scientific departments, making us the biggest science school within the Netherlands.

Concerning the institute
Established in 1971, IVM is a number one environmental analysis institute that’s internationally recognised for its high-quality analysis output in a variety of environmental disciplines, in addition to for its interdisciplinary work. The mission of the institute is to contribute to sustainable growth and take care of the atmosphere by means of scientific analysis and instructing. IVM goals to do wonderful problem-oriented analysis that’s helpful to a variety of stakeholders within the Netherlands and internationally. A singular energy of our analysis is to know sustainability issues of their social and financial context. IVM’s analysis neighborhood works inside 4 departments: Environmental Economics; Environmental Geography, Environmental Coverage Evaluation; and Water and Local weather Danger. Since 2001 IVM has been a part of the School of Science at VU Amsterdam (authorized title Stichting VU).

The division of Water and Local weather Danger is a dynamic group of ~50 worldwide researchers, school members and PhD college students inside the Institute for Environmental Research (IVM). Specific consideration is given to the interplay between the hydrological and local weather methods, and the way these interactions result in danger to society, the financial system, and the atmosphere. The main target is on water and local weather extremes reminiscent of floods and droughts, to estimate impacts from these extremes on numerous financial sectors, and to look at which methods will be developed to scale back impacts and danger.

Inside WCR, the Local weather Extremes group led by Prof. Coumou research hyperlinks between local weather change and excessive climate with a particular concentrate on how dynamical adjustments within the environment (i.e. to jet streams) can change the frequency or depth of extremes. The group pioneered using machine-learning methods, together with causal discovery and explainable AI, to know atmospheric teleconnections behind excessive climate occasions. The crew’s mission is to (1) perceive the processes behind excessive climate, (2) assess the function of local weather change on present and future extremes, (3) quantify the impacts and dangers for society, particularly for agriculture and meals safety, and (4) enhance seasonal to sub-seasonal (S2S) forecasting. The crew unites experience on novel data-driven strategies (causal discovery, explainable AI) with state-of-the-art local weather fashions. Our work has been extensively lined by (inter)nationwide media, together with The New York Instances, Monetary Instances, Scientific American, Nieuwsuur, Nature, and so on. At the moment we lead the XAIDA venture ( that unites 16 European analysis institutes with local weather danger practitioners to raised assess and predict the affect of local weather change on excessive climate utilizing novel synthetic intelligence strategies. For extra data see our web site:


Are you curious about this place? Please apply through the applying button and add your curriculum vitae and canopy letter by 

30 November 2023

. The job interviews are deliberate quickly after.

Submitting a diploma and a reference verify are a part of the applying course of.

Purposes acquired by e-mail won’t be processed.

Emptiness questions
When you have any questions relating to this emptiness, you could contact:

Identify: Prof. Dim Coumou
Place: Professor in Local weather Extremes & Societal Danger
E-mail: [email protected]
Web site:

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