Postdoc­toral Re­searcher and Doc­toral Stu­dent, INAR

Helsinki, Finland
Tuesday, 15 June 2021
End of advertisement period
Sunday, 25 July 2021
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Measured in number of students and teachers, the Faculty of Science at the University of Helsinki is the largest science faculty in Finland. There are some 6,000 students taking a basic degree. Out of them, some 1,000 are postgraduates. There are some 500 international students, and over 200 researchers and teachers from abroad.

Institute for Atmospheric and Earth System Research (INAR) is a multi- and interdisciplinary research unit based in physics, chemistry, meteorology, forest sciences, environmental sciences and social sciences in the University of Helsinki. INAR aims to strengthen the internationally leading, integrated multidisciplinary research and education environment for atmospheric and Earth system science and to feed in scientific results for the national and international environment and climate policy. It performs multiscale research from molecular to global scale and focuses on climate change, air quality, biogeochemical cycles and ecosystem processes. INAR has INAR Finland Network partners in Finnish Meteorological Institute, University of Eastern Finland and Tampere University of Technology.

Faculty of Science invites applications for


starting in September 2021 for fixed-term contracts of four years (doctoral student) or 2 years 4 months (postdoc) in the Academy of Finland funded research project “Quantifying controls on the intensity, variability and impacts of extreme European STORMS”

The aim of the STORMS project is to determine what environmental factors (e.g. mean temperature) govern the maximum intensity, structure and variability of extra-tropical cyclones and how the intensity and impacts of these weather systems are likely to change in the future. The project will utilize a unique combination of idealised modelling simulations performed with the numerical model OpenIFS, ERA5 reanalysis, and machine learning techniques. In collaboration with the University of Oxford (UK), a public distributed computing network ( will be exploited to perform a massive ensemble of simulations.

The postdoctoral researcher will be responsible for designing and running the ensemble of OpenIFS simulations and for developing post-processing code or adding diagnostics to the OpenIFS source code to calculate the required metrics of extra-tropical cyclone intensity. The postdoctoral researcher will use machine learning methods to identify which parameters have the strongest control on the intensity of extra-tropical cyclones and will create and evaluate statistical emulators for different measures of extra-tropical cyclone intensity.

The doctoral student will develop methods to quantify the dynamical intensity of extra-tropical cyclones and the potential societal impact of extra-tropical cyclones. Once these diagnostics are established, the doctoral student will identify controls on extra-tropical cyclone intensity, structure, and the precursors to cyclone development, in different regions of the North Atlantic storm track using ERA5 reanalysis data. The doctoral student will also quantify how applicable the results obtained from the idealised OpenIFS simulations are to the real atmosphere by applying the statistical emulators developed by the postdoctoral researcher.

The candidate for the doctoral student position must apply for a position in the Doctoral Programme for Atmospheric Sciences (ATM-DP) during the fall 2021 application round. The appointee’s main duties consist of postgraduate studies and writing a doctoral dissertation related to the project’s topic. Teaching can take up to 5% of annual working time of 1612 hours.

The applicants for doctoral student position should

  • hold a Master’s degree (or be about to hold) in a field that is relevant to the research topic such as meteorology or atmospheric sciences;
  • have an excellent understanding of atmospheric dynamics;
  • demonstrate a strong interest in studying extra-tropical cyclones using reanalysis data and numerical modelling;
  • have knowledge of a programming language such as Python, Matlab or Fortran;
  • have some experience of using UNIX/Linux operating systems;
  • have good skills in written and spoken English.

The applicants for postdoctoral researcher position should

  • hold a Doctoral degree in a field that is relevant to the research topic such as atmospheric sciences, meteorology, climate science, data science, computing science or physics;
  • have excellent skills in UNIX/Linux operating systems, high performance computing, and managing large data sets;
  • have considerable experience in advanced statistics and machine learning methods, and ideally, experience in the development and use of statistical emulators.
  • have demonstrable experience of programming languages such as Python, Matlab, Fortran or Metview;
  • have experience of compiling and running numerical weather prediction models;
  • have good skills in written and spoken English;
  • have a willingness to work internationally and spend a considerable amount of time at the University of Oxford (UK) working with our collaborators.

Finland is a member of the EU, has high quality free schooling (also in English), generous family benefits and healthcare. The University of Helsinki is a top 100 ranked university in most ranking lists, and invests

Working language is English. The starting salary of the doctoral student position will be ca. 2500–3000 euros/month and postdoctoral researcher position ca. 3500-3700 euros/month, depending on the appointees’ qualifications and experience. The positions will be filled with a 6 month trial period. Furthermore, the University of Helsinki offers comprehensive services to its employees, including occupational health care and health insurance, sports facilities, and opportunities for professional development. University assists employees from abroad with their transition to work and life in Finland (

How to apply?

Please submit your application consisting of

  • Cover letter,
  • Curriculum vitae (including contact details of 2 referees) and a publications list in a one single pdf-file
  • A research statement (max. 2000 words) with a brief description of previous experience and research interests, as demonstrated e.g. in a Master’s or PhD thesis

using the electronic recruitment system of the University of Helsinki via the link “Apply for the position”. Applicants who are employees of the University of Helsinki are requested to leave their application via the SAP HR portal. The deadline for applications is 25 July 2021.

Please mention on the cover letter whether you are applying for the doctoral student or for the postdoctoral researcher position.

For further information, please contact University lecturer Victoria Sinclair,

Due date

25.07.2021 23:59 EEST

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