Skip to main content

This job has expired

AGBS - Postdoctoral Fellow in Crop Modeling

Morocco (MA)
Competitive Salary
Closing date
16 Jun 2024

Job Details

College of Sustainable Agriculture and Environmental Science (CSAES)

AgroBioSciences program (AgBS)

Position Announcement - Mohammed VI Polytechnic University (UM6P), College of Agriculture and Environmental Science (CSAES), AgroBioSciences program (AgBS),

Duration: 3 years

Location: Benguerir – Morocco

Areas of research:  

Crop modeling, climate change scenarios, yield prediction, data analytics, sustainable agriculture.

About UM6P:

Mohammed VI Polytechnic University (UM6P, is an international higher education institution, established to provide research and innovation at the service of education and development for Morocco and the African continent. It has a state-of-the-art campus at the heart of the Green City of Benguerir, near Marrakesh. UM6P academics and staff enjoy strong research funding, moderate teaching loads, and excellent facilities. Its research approach is transdisciplinary with an emphasis on international collaboration. Many of our research programs run as start-ups. OCP group (, a world leader in fertilizer production, is a major starter client for the University providing capital and research funds. In parallel, a new portfolio of clients is growing with the development of an R&D cluster around the University and a growing number of international partnerships.

About the College of Agriculture and Environmental Science (CAES) and AgroBiosciences Program (AgBS) at UM6P:

The College of Agriculture and Environmental Science (CAES) is a component of the Science & Technology pole of Mohammed VI Polytechnic University (UM6P). It constitutes a structure of higher education and practical-based research with a vision of solving real African agriculture challenges leveraging up to date science and technology. Oriented towards Africa, CAES acts in connection with a wide network of universities and research centers around the continent in order to link real field issues with up-to-date science. Research on plant nutrition, (a)biotic stresses resistance and biofortification is part of the AgroBiosciences Program (AgBS) with main focus on Moroccan and African agriculture challenges in particular meeting the food and nutritional security. 

About the PHENO-MA Platform:

The PHENO-MA is an innovative research platform for high-throughput plant phenotyping built and established at the University Mohammed VI Polytechnic (UM6P) in Benguerir – Morocco. It can be used to assess plant responses to nutrient deficiency, drought, high temperature, pests, and diseases, and exploring smart solutions to enhance resistance and boost crop productivity. The platform includes:

  • An outdoor system with a (i) a fully automated lysimetric system with 1400 large container (mini-plots) to study water dynamics and drought scenarios simulation under close-to-field conditions, and (ii) a fully autonomous phenotyping robot, Phenomobile.v2+, equipped with a set of sensors (LiDAR, RGB, IR, and Spectrometer) that enable advanced plant measurements, that allow us to assess plant’s water budget in response to abiotic stress and nutrients’ application. 
  • An indoor system with (i) the phenotyping machines, "PhenoMerzouga.v2", which is a small-scale lysimetric system for simulating climate change scenarios, and (ii) 150 m² of growth chambers and speed breeding platform to accelerate the genetic gain and germplasm development.

Job description:

We are seeking a Post-Doctoral Fellow specializing in Crop modeling, the primary responsibility for the position will be to integrate diverse spatial and field data, including various climate risks such as drought, high temperatures, nutrient deficiency, etc,. This role is crucial for advancing a high throughput and digital driven platform designed to enhance precision phenotyping of crops’ performance and yield estimates and forecasts in response to multiple environmental stresses applied at different spatial and temporal scales. Additionally, the selected candidate will engage in research aimed at analyzing yield gaps, assessing uncertainties in crop yield estimates, and investigating historical yield trends to better predict future outcomes, spatial variations, and underlying drivers. This position is instrumental in developing models that project future agricultural trends under different climate change scenarios and in response various cropping systems. The position is part of the Crop Improvement and Plant Health sub-program at CAES. Priority will be given to the candidates having research experience particularly in international research organizations and on African agricultural challenges. Evidence and excellence in research and teaching are required all with the ability to professional engagement with a diverse faculty, staff, and students across the university and externally are required. Good English communication skills; both verbal and written are required.

Main responsibilities:

The successful candidate is expected to:

  • Develop and use crop models to simulate and analyze different crop management scenarios, climate change impacts, and agronomic practices to assess their potential effects on crop productivity, resource use efficiency, and environmental sustainability,
  • Develop, apply and explore new computation methods for decision support for mapping crop losses due to abiotic (drought, high temperature, nutrients deficiency) and biotic (pest and diseases) factors,
  • Expand existing satellite-based crop yield estimate solutions to and drones and high throughput phenotyping platforms for precision farming solutions, 
  • Produce innovative research related to yield gap analysis, crop yield estimate uncertainties, and analysis of yield historical trends to model future trends, spatial variability, and drivers, 
  • Develop novel mathematical and computational models to simulate the target crop growth, development, and yield prediction in response to various environmental conditions, 
  • Develop modeling tools, and decision support systems for crop modeling, simulation and yield prediction using data generated by the PHENO-MA platform and advanced computational techniques, 
  • Develop and generate models for target crop species in response to various agro-ecologies and cropping systems, 
  • Integrate diverse datasets, including genetic information, weather data, soil properties, and crop management practices, to improve and develop crop models, 
  • Use the PHENO-MA data to predict crop responses under various environmental conditions, in particular changes in temperature, precipitation, atmospheric CO2 concentrations, and nutrients availability under different climate change scenarios, 
  • Participate in multidisciplinary teams to study climate change impacts on agriculture.
  • Publish findings in peer-reviewed journals and present at international conferences.
  • Contribute to the development of research proposals for funding from potential donors to support and maintain integrated research programs.
  • Supervise graduate and undergraduate students, develop teaching materials, and attract high level students. 
  • Contribute to the multidisciplinary research team in the development of the Crop Improvement team, 
  • Contribution to establishing and/or maintaining collaboration with other research entities at SAES college, UM6P, and external partners, 

Education, qualifications and experience

  • PhD in Agronomy, Environmental Science, Plant Science, Computer Science or related field, with a focus on crop modeling.
  • Experience with modeling software and climate data analysis.
  • Strong quantitative skills, including knowledge of statistical and machine learning methods.
  • Proven ability to conduct independent and collaborative research.
  • Demonstrated publication record in crop modeling, climate impact assessment, or related areas.
  • Excellent communication skills in English, both written and spoken.
  • Good experience in teaching and supervising graduate and postgraduate students. 
  • Excellent English communication skills, both verbal and written.
  • Aptitude for teamwork, problem-solving and collaborative work. 

Employment terms:

The successful candidate will be employed on a competitive salary by the University Mohammed VI Polytechnic (UM6P) based in Benguerir, Morocco.

Applications and selection procedure:

Applications must be sent using a single electronic zipped folder with the mention of the job title in the mails subject. The folder must contain:

  • Cover letter indicating the position applied for and the main research interests. 
  • Detailed CV.
  • Contact information of 3 references (Applicants are assumed to have obtained their references’ consent to be contacted for this matter).

Applications are to be submitted directly on the hiring platform.

Contact information: moez.amri@um6p.m


Company info

Get job alerts

Create a job alert and receive personalised job recommendations straight to your inbox.

Create alert