Finland : Doctoral Student Position in Department of Geosciences and Geography at The University of Helsinki

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The University of Helsinki is a multidisciplinary research university which ranks among the top-20 universities in Europe. The Department of Geosciences and Geography in Faculty of Science is the leading university department of its fields in Finland and provides excellent working conditions and a friendly atmosphere.

The Department of Geosciences and Geography at the University of Helsinki is seeking a


for a three-year position starting 1.4.2013. The position will be filled with a 4-month trial period.

The doctoral student will work on the project “What controls strain partitioning at obliquely convergent ocean-continent margins? 3D dynamics of crustal deformation along the western Andean margin” funded by the Research Funds of the University of Helsinki.

Project description: This project includes funding for a doctoral student and part-time research assistant to study the fundamental tectonic process of strain partitioning at obliquely convergent ocean-continent margins. The primary controls on strain partitioning behavior will be determined using fully 3D thermomechanical numerical experiments of oceanic subduction and continental deformation. Experimental geometries will be based on the western margin of the South American Andes, where variable strain partitioning occurs along the strike of the mountain system, and results will be compared to observed fault geometries and displacements, seismic activity and geochronologic data. Understanding strain partitioning processes is important, not only for advancing our understanding of plate tectonics, but also because subduction plate margins have potential for deadly, destructive megathrust earthquakes. Thus, deeper knowledge of strain partitioning processes may contribute to future assessment of seismic risk in these regions. The doctoral student will use modern research tools to study an exciting geologic region and work under the supervision of assistant professor David Whipp. The student will also participate in international research meetings, visit an internationally renowned research group in Canada and co-supervise a research assistant.

Terms of employment: The maximum duration of the contract will be 3 years. The starting salary is based on the University of Helsinki teaching and research personnel salary system for level 2 teaching and research positions (starting from ~2250 € / month). A part of the wage is determined by the accomplishments and performance of the individual. This is a full-time research position, including some (max. 5 %) commitment for teaching or departmental responsibilities.

Qualifications: The candidate must hold a master degree in geology, geophysics, physics or other fields related to geodynamics, tectonics, numerical modeling or high-performance computing. Strong communications skills in English are required, and students with experience in numerical modeling, parallel computing, or scientific programming are preferred. The planned project involves international travel, so the student should have the required documentation and a desire to travel within Europe and North America.

What to submit: The application must include: (1) A complete curriculum vitae or portfolio, (2) a one-page letter explaining the motivation for applying for the position, and (3) contact information for two referees.

Further Information

Application Deadline : 7 February 2014

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