Sabtu, 12 September 2015

PhD in African Rainfall at TU Delft

Civil Engineering and Geosciences

The Faculty of Civil Engineering and Geosciences of Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) provides leading international research and education, with innovation and sustainability as central themes. Research and education are closely interwoven and address societal challenges. The Faculty consists of the departments of Transport and Planning, Structural Engineering, Geoscience and Engineering, Water Management, Hydraulic Engineering, and Geoscience and Remote Sensing.

The Water Resources section focuses on Water Resources Management and (Geo-)Hydrology. The section is led by Prof. H.H.G. Savenije and Prof. N.C. van de Giesen and has three part-time chairs for specialised fields. The group encompasses a research staff totalling 16 FTE and over 40 PhD students; some 20 MSc students graduate each year. The main research activities within the Hydrology group are related to surface water hydrology and geohydrology within a civil engineering context. The group has an excellent international research reputation and is very well embedded in the (inter)national research community. A significant part of the research is done in strong collaboration with (inter)national research institutes and industry.

Job description On January 1st 2015 the Delft University of Technology launched the Delft Global Initiative, intended to bundle and boost all TU Delft activities in the field of science and technology for global development. See: In June, Delft Global granted the first Delft Global Research Fellowships, PhD projects on development global challenges. This PhD position on Africa’s rainfall is one of these seven research fellowships.

We know surprisingly little about rainfall in Africa. Even our best models show discrepancies in the order of 1000 mm/year over large regions. To close this gap in our scientific understanding, a PhD position is available under sponsorship of the Delft Global Initiative. The aim of the project is to derive the best possible rainfall estimates on the basis of ground observations, satellite data, and numerical weather modelling. Ground data will be available through the TAHMO network of weather stations ( This PhD work is seen as an important contribution towards TAHMO’s goals. Data assimilation will be the glue that ties models, ground observations, and satellite observations together. Many scientific challenges have to be met, and a wide range of physical phenomena needs to be grasped. Large-scale computer modelling will be central to the effort. The final result will be a method to produce dynamic rainfall maps and associated error estimates over Africa. For more information see also:

Requirements Applicants should have an MSc in hydrology, meteorology, applied mathematics or applied physics. Experience with computer modelling is a pre-requisite. Fieldwork in Africa will be part of the work, as will be active participation in Delft Global Initiative activities.

Conditions of employment The TU Delft offers an attractive, customisable compensation and benefits package, including a discount for health insurance and sport memberships, and a monthly work costs contribution. Flexible work schedules can be arranged. An International Children’s Centre is opening on the campus in the summer of 2015, with day care, before- and after-school care and an international primary school. Dual Career Services offers support to accompanying partners. Salary and benefits are in accordance with the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities.
As a PhD candidate you will be enrolled in the TU Delft Graduate School. The TU Delft Graduate School provides an inspiring research environment; an excellent team of supervisors, academic staff and a mentor; and a Doctoral Education Programme aimed at developing your transferable, discipline-related and research skills. Please visit for more information.

Information and application For more information about this position, please contact Prof. N. van de Giesen ( To apply, please send an e-mail to with a statement of interest, CV, sample of scientific writing in English, and names and contact information of three references. When applying for this position, please refer to vacancy number CITG15-25.

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