Oferta de Beca predoctoral en Avignon (Francia) ~ Bioblogia.net

27 de agosto de 2008

Oferta de Beca predoctoral en Avignon (Francia)

We are currently looking for a graduate student to do a Ph.D. in restoration ecology in our laboratory (IMEP http://www.imep-cnrs.com/) at the University of Avignon, France (http://www.univ-avignon.fr). Please see details on the subject below.

Deadline for application: 14 September 2008

A 3 year PhD grant is available starting in October 2008 (1216 euro/month = 1790 US$). There is no GRE test to pass in order to enter a PhD program in France. You just have to have a M.Sc. in Ecology and to be born after December, 31st 1978 (December, 31st 1980 for European citizens) to meet the requirements for this grant.
You don’t have to speak French (the thesis can be written in English), but it would be good to be willing to learn the language (you will have to speak a bit anyway to spend 3 years in France).

Send your application (pdf files) including 1) a cover letter in which you explain your interest for the project; 2) a detailed curriculum vitae (previous research, articles, presentations, etc.); 3) a letter from a person who agreed to provide references (M.Sc. adviser) to elise.buisson@univ-avignon.fr & thierry.dutoit@univ-avignon.fr BEFORE September 14, 2008.
If you are selected, you will have to quickly provide us with a document attesting that you have a M.Sc. diploma (by September, 19th)

Expected qualifications:
Interest in
- plant ecology (community ecology, biotic interactions).
- applied ecology, restoration ecology and ecological engineering.
- field experiments and botany.
- ecology of the Mediterranean ecosystems and particularly steppe like ecosystems, dry grasslands...
- “resistance” to water stress, solar radiation, mistral (strong wind), mosquitoes and delays in construction work.

As part of the ecological rehabilitation of an intensive peach orchard (360 ha) in the plain of La Crau (Bouches-du-Rhônes; southeastern France), a research program is currently funded by CDC-Biodiversity, a subsidiary of the “Caisse des Depots et Consignations” and supported by the “region” (state) Provence-Alpes-Côté-d’Azur from 2008 to 2011. The program involves carry out experiments in restoration ecology in order to better understand and to accelerate the restoration of the herbaceous vegetation of La Crau (pseudo-steppe) and it associated insects. The thesis concerns vegetation only because another student will be recruited to study insects between 2009 and 2011. The main objectives are:
1. To monitor the dynamics of spontaneous vegetation on the orchard in 2008 (after trees have been pulled); compare with controls (vegetation of the pseudo-steppe and surrounding orchards); compare plots with/without grazing. To analyze data taken in spring 2008 before work (90 vegetation relevés, 45 soil samples). The objective here is to highlight the immediate impacts of heavy interventions between 2008 and 2009 and the potential role of edges between the orchard and pseudo-steppe.
2. To implement a restoration experiment with hay transfer (collected on the steppe) and/or soil transfer (superficial soil layer salvaged from a quarry) and monitor vegetation composition, structure, phenology, seed banks, seed rain, etc.. Functional traits may complement taxonomic analysis.
3. To carry out restoration experiments aimed at reintroducing nurses species (seeding species with a high ground-cover) in different ways (type of species planted, density, with or without grazing) and monitor their impacts on plant diversity (decrease in weeds, steppe species colonization, decrease in soil fertility, etc.).
4. To carry out restoration experiments on the role of perennial species in structuring the community (composed at 50% by annuals).

In basic ecology, this set of experiments seeks to better discriminate the roles of abiotic and biotic filters at the regeneration and/or installation phase of plant communities rich in stress-tolerant species, but with no resilience to major disturbances.

Advisor and co-advisor
Dr. Elise Buisson & Pr. Thierry Dutoit
IUT d’Avignon, Département Génie Biologique
Site Agroparc, BP 1207
84911 Avignon Cedex 09
Emails : elise.buisson@univ-avignon.fr et thierry.dutoit@univ-avignon.fr
Home page: http://www.imep-cnrs.com/buisson/index.htm

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