U of Michigan – Nadelhoffer lab – biochar

Postdoctoral Researcher Position In Terrestrial Biogeochemistry And Soil Ecology

The Nadelhoffer ecosystem ecology lab is seeking a postdoctoral researcher to join a collaborative, NSF-funded project investigating the fundamental biological, chemical and physical controls on biochar degradation and biogeochemical processes in a north temperate forest soil. This ongoing research is investigating the how the charring temperature and plant precursor material type affect biochar chemical and physical properties, resulting decay rates in soils, decomposer functioning, enzyme activities, transport dynamics, and soil stabilization mechanisms.
We seek a highly motivated PhD with demonstrated ability to carry out outstanding research in biogeochemistry and soil ecology. The work will include measuring C and N fluxes from 15N- and 13C-labeled biochar materials decomposing in situ in a forest soil. The successful candidate must have experience in stable isotope approaches to measuring C and N dynamics. The postdoc will also be responsible for quantifying soil microbial utilization of biochar and its precursor woody material and associated biochemical analyses. Training will be available in field and laboratory approaches as appropriate. The postdoc will have opportunities to develop new, complementary projects and to participate in related ongoing and new projects. Field work will take place at The University of Michigan Biological Station in Pellston, MI, and the postdoc will be expected to lead field sampling trips at the site along with a second postdoc working with lead-PI Jeff Bird (City University of NY) and graduate students from CUNY and Dr. Timothy Filley’s lab at Purdue. For more information about the Nadelhoffer lab or UMBS please visit:



Applicants should have a PhD in terrestrial biogeochemistry, soil ecology, soil microbiology or a related field. Demonstrated experience in stable isotope biogeochemistry and undertaking field experiments will be preferred. The position requires an independent, organized, creative individual who is personable and enthusiastic about working in a collaborative group environment. The postdoc should be comfortable training and mentoring graduate and undergraduate students related to the project. Interested candidates should send a single pdf file containing the following to Dr. Knute Nadelhoffer at knute@umich.edu: (i) a cover letter indicating interest in the project, (ii) a curriculum vitae, (iii) a list of three references including names, email addresses, and telephone numbers, and (iv) two representative publications. Applications will be reviewed beginning August 1, 2013 and will be accepted until a suitable candidate is found. The position will be for one year, renewable up to two years based on performance. Start date for the position is October 1, 2013.