PhD position on the project Psychopharmac’eu: Psychopharmaceutical Prevention & Pilots to Reduce Effects in the water cycle - NIOO-KNAW - Wageningen

PhD position on the project Psychopharmac’eu: Psychopharmaceutical Prevention & Pilots to Reduce Effects in the water cycle - NIOO-KNAW - Wageningen

Published Deadline Location
25 Jun 31 Jul Wageningen

Job description

The Department of Aquatic Ecology offers a PhD position on the project Psychopharmac’eu: Psychopharmaceutical Prevention & Pilots to Reduce Effects in the water cycle.

Project description:
Over a million people in the Netherlands use psychopharmaca, like anti-depressants and anti-psychotics. After use residues enter surface waters via the sewage. Compared to other pharmaceuticals, for psychopharmaca very limited information is available on environmental risks, notwithstanding their relevance in terms of use. Designed to affect the nervous system, psychopharmaca are known to affect aquatic organisms at very low and environmentally relevant concentrations. They are expected to mimic so-called infochemicals, influence natural communication and cause effects on the behaviour of organisms. Thereby psychopharmaca potentially disrupt ecosystem structure and functioning.

Aim of this PhD project is to determine the subtle effects of psychopharma on the functioning of freshwater ecosystems. Using a tiered approach, from small-scale controlled experiments focusing on chronic low-dose exposure to single compounds and constituted mixtures, to large-scale experiments in a near-realistic ecosystem setting with whole effluents, the PhD candidate will focus on the maintenance/disruption of natural communication and energy flows between organisms along the aquatic food-chain, and related behavioural changes. Importantly, to understand the impact of potential mitigation strategies on foodweb functioning, effluent treated by different water technologies will be used in the large-scale experiments.  As a final step, bioassays will be developed with the aim to predict the ecosystem impact of psychopharmaca.

The PhD candidate will follow a new, integrative and stepwise, multidisciplinary approach to advance from understanding to prediction. The Psychopharmac’eau project will be carried out in a project team consisting of 3 PhD students involving researchers from the University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW) and Wageningen University and Research. You will also work closely with partners in the water sector. 

The project will provide fundamentally new and critically needed knowledge on the more subtle effects of psychopharmaca discharge on ecosystem functioning and identify different ways to mitigate potential negative impacts. 
 

Specifications

Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW)

Requirements

Skills and Competences:
The candidate is motivated to pursue a PhD, independence and ability to collaborate and to engage in a training network. Importantly, the candidate needs to have a strong background in aquatic experimental ecology and environmental chemistry, experience with pharmaceutical research is highly appreciated.  The candidate needs to have a master degree.  If the candidate has not completed their higher education with English as the language of instruction, they have to submit an internationally recognised Certificate of Proficiency in the English Language (TOEFL internet-based 90, with minimum sub-score 20 (was 23) for speaking of equivalent). The  candidate will be part of the AKWA team at the NIOO (headed by Lisette de Senerpont Domis), where a team science approach is taken to strive for diversity, inclusiveness and equality, therefore requiring good team player skills.

Conditions of employment

Appointment:
This is a temporary appointment, initially for 1 year and upon satisfaction to be prolonged for a maximum of 4 years (1.0 fte). Starting date: 1 September 2020. The PhD position is for four years.

Salary:
The gross salary starts at € 2.395, - per month in the 1st year, and will gradually increase to a maximum of € 3.061, - per month in the 4th year, scale P, Collective Agreement for Dutch Universities (CAO Nederlandse Universiteiten), excluding 8% holiday pay and a 8,3% year-end bonus.
 

Employer

Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO)

The Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW) is an Academy research institute. It conducts ecological research on land, in the ocean and in fresh water and studies how living organisms interact with one another and their environment. NIOO stimulates biodiversity and sustainability in nature and society through its worldwide network of researchers, policymakers, conservationists and other stakeholders.

Additional information

Information:
Dr. Lisette de Senerpont Domis L.deSenerpontDomis@nioo.knaw.nl

The PhD student will be based in Netherlands Institute of Ecology (NIOO-KNAW) supervised by Dr. Lisette de Senerpont Domis (principal investigator), and Dr. Miquel Lürling of the Wageningen University.

The PhD candidate will be advised by Prof.Dr. Ellen van Donk at the NIOO-KNAW.

We will not respond to any supplier enquiries based on this job advertisement.

Specifications

  • PhD
  • Natural sciences
  • max. 38 hours per week
  • €2395—€3061 per month
  • University graduate
  • AT2020-076 - PhD-AqE-20-011

Employer

Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW)

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Location

Droevendaalsesteeg 10, 6708 PB, Wageningen

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Application procedure

Application procedure

Please send your application including complete curriculum vitae. 

Make sure to apply no later than 31 Jul 2020 23:59 (Europe/Amsterdam).