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PhD | Doctoral Candidate (W-0024)


We are now opening a 3-year position for

PhD | Doctoral Candidate (W-0024 | all genders)

The successful candidate will be part of the International Max Planck Research School on Earth System Modeling (IMPRS), as well as the Director's group in the Department of Climate Dynamics (CDY), working under the supervision of Sarah Kang. The CDY uses a hierarchy of models to advance fundamental understanding about the large-scale climate pattern changes.


The recent historical period is characterised by the eastern tropical Pacific, which the majority of coupled climate models fail to replicate. It is critical to have a better understanding of the origin of this discrepancy due to its important implications on the credibility of regional climate projections. It has been proposed that the observed Southern Ocean SST cooling might have contributed to the Southeast Pacific cooling. Previous studies show that radiative perturbations in the Southern Ocean have the capacity to shift the eastern tropical Pacific ITCZ and modulate the tropical Pacific SST pattern. Multi-model inter-comparison study indicates that this Southern Ocean-driven teleconnection is mediated by the subtropical cloud feedback. It is of interest to devise a model with a varying cloud feedback strength to systematically understand the effect of uncertainty in the regional cloud feedback on the teleconnection pattern and strength. Another factor that is thought to modulate the teleconnection pattern is the climatological double ITCZ bias. We anticipate a stronger teleconnection all the way into the North Pacific as the double ITCZ bias is corrected. To this end, we plan to adopt a flux corrected version of MPI-ESM to examine the effect of climatological bias, which will be further verified with the linear baroclinic model. Hence, the successful candidate will examine the effect of cloud feedback and double ITCZ bias on the Southern Ocean-driven teleconnection. Results will be published in peer-reviewed journals and presented at conferences.


  • A strong interest in atmospheric convection and atmospheric dynamics
  • A good background in mathematics and physics
  • High skills in writing scientific publications
  • Solid skills in UNIX/Linux, Python, shell scripting, processing, and visualization of simulation data
  • Ability to work both in a team and autonomously
  • Very good spoken and written English language for communication within the group and project partners and for the presentation of scientific results in international conferences are required
  • Candidates should be holding a M.Sc. degree (or equivalent; with written thesis) and have a strong academic background in meteorology, physics, geosciences or related areas


  • Participation in a challenging part of science in an international, intellectually stimulating environment
  • Access to complex workflows on the bleeding edge of what is technologically possible, as well as working for and with an open-source community
  • Very good opportunities for self-realization, freedom in and influence upon the decisions what to do, and how to do it
  • A network of very experienced and innovative colleagues within the institute, and at project partner institutions with a long-proven tradition of sharing knowledge and information
  • Attractive subsidy for job ticket in Hamburg (Deutschland-JobTicket)


  • The position is to be filled immediately
  • Candidates will be evaluated based on their qualifications and ability to fulfill the responsibilities as outlined for this project. Payment will be in accordance with German public service positions depending on qualification (E13 TVöD, 65%), including extensive social security plans. The conditions of employment, including upgrades and duration, follow the rules of the Max Planck Society for the Advancement of Science and those of the German civil service. The position is in principle full time.

The Max Planck Society is committed to increasing the number of individuals with disabilities in its workforce and therefore encourages applications from such qualified individuals. We welcome applications from diverse backgrounds and explicitly encourage women to apply. The Max Planck Society strives for gender and diversity equality.


We look forward to receiving your online application by 28 June 2024.

Interviews are expected to take place in calendar week 29 (15 - 19 July 2024).


The Max Planck Institute for Meteorology (MPI-M) is a multidisciplinary center for climate and Earth system research located in Hamburg, Germany. It is one of the premier climate science research institutes in the world. Located in the heart of one of Europe’s most livable and vibrant cities, it provides a highly international and interdisciplinary environment to conduct scientific research as well as access to state-of-the-art scientific facilities.


For further information, please contact Dr. Sarah Kang (

Please do not forward your application to this email address. The application documents (PDF only) need to be submitted through this online application system.

Deadline: 28.06.2024
Max-Planck-Institut für Meteorologie
Bundesstraße 53
20146 Hamburg

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