Open-ended research position on regional climate modeling

Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
April 01, 2023
Offerd Salary:Negotiation
Working address:N/A
Contract Type:Open-ended
Working Time:Negotigation
Working type:N/A
Ref info:N/A
Open-ended research position on regional climate modeling

(ref. OZK-2023-3)

Last modification : Wednesday, March 1, 2023

The Royal Meteorological Institute of Belgium (RMI) and the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences within the Science, Engineering and Technology Group at KU Leuven seek a highly motivated and skilled research expert in the field of regional climate modeling. This recruitment is embedded in the research profile COVering climate Extremes through impact-oriented REgional Downscaling (COVERED) (Prf-2022-043) within the FED-tWIN framework, the Programme of sustainable research cooperation between the Belgian federal scientific institutes and the universities. In particular, we are looking for an excellent recognised climate scientist who can bridge and strengthen the expertise domains at the RMI and the KU Leuven. The overall short-term objective for the FED-tWIN researcher is to develop a new scientifically-validated conceptual framework that combines regional climate modeling at high resolution with statistical methods, with a focus on future climate extremes for impact-oriented regional downscaling and to provide developments for the ALARO model. The long-term ambition of this FED-tWIN research is to assist in the design of the next-generation Belgian climate scenarios in line with the Sixth IPCC Assessment Report and necessary for national climate services and in support of the new Belgian Climate Center, covering cross-sectoral impact assessments through the design of tailored scenarios. These tailored methods incorporate the information from global, regional as well as high-resolution climate models and will allow improved risk assessment of future climate extremes and their impact. The candidate will contribute to strategic decisions on future modeling systems in the light of international developments in European regional climate modeling consortia (ACCORD and COSMO-CLM). The position to be held consists of a half-time position at the RMI and a half-time position at KU Leuven. The candidate applies for both positions at once and it is not possible to apply for one position only. You will be part of the Regional Climate Studies (RCS) group in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences (EES) of KU Leuven and the Scientific Service Meteorological and Climatological Research of the RMI. The Royal Meteorological Institute of Belgium, Ringlaan 3, B-1180 Brussel ( KU Leuven, Leuven (Arenberg). Celestijnenlaan 200e - bus 2409. 3001 Leuven (


As a research expert you are responsible to complete the following major tasks:

  • Take a leading role internationally and perform research in the domain of regional climate modeling, which is essential for the research strategy of RMI and KU Leuven. Aim at excellence in your research, publish in outstanding journals and present your results at the main conferences in the field;
  • Be actively involved in the teams at RMI and KU Leuven, contributing to and extending their specific expertise domains and build bridges that strengthen their collaboration;
  • Provide scientific and expert services and outreach in the two institutes, towards society in general as well as to internal committees;
  • Support interdisciplinary projects where climate model output is used for cross-sectoral impact assessments;
  • Possibility of teaching at KU Leuven of maximum 6 ECTS.
  • At the long term:

  • Applying for competitive grants to finance your research activities and build up your own research team;
  • Supervise and train master and PhD students working on regional climate modeling.
  • Profile

    The successful candidate should hold (at the moment of appointment) a PhD in Climate Science, Atmospheric Science, Environmental Science, Physics, Mathematics, Geography, Hydrology, Civil or Applied engineering, Computer Science, or related disciplines.

    The researcher should be a team player and have:

  • A good knowledge of dynamic meteorology and climate science;
  • A strong experience with numerical climate or weather modeling;
  • Experience with High-Performance Computing (HPC) on Linux;
  • A track record of publications in high-quality international journals on the topic of climatology or meteorology;
  • Good communication skills in English;
  • A track record of speaking in front of an international group of peers;
  • Strong organizational skills, a cooperative attitude and willingness to develop leadership capacities, and commitment to intensive collaboration between the two institutes;
  • Attention for diversity and gender equality.
  • More specific skill(s) considered a plus:

  • Practical experience in the processing and analysis of a wide range of observational and model data.
  • Experience in leading projects or supervising master or PhD students or teaching at university level.
  • Admission

  • You are the holder of a doctorate degree or of a diploma or certificate that is recognized as equivalent (Article V.20 Codex Hoger Onderwijs). When assessing a foreign (non-EU) diploma, an attestation of equivalence has to be available at a later stage and could be requested from NARIC. Additionally, if you obtained your master's degree outside the Benelux (Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg), an equivalence recognition from a foreign diploma or certificate in Flanders (NARIC) or Wallonia (CFWB) is needed. When applicable, we advise you to start this recognition procedure as soon as possible since it must be available to start the appointment procedure.
  • The PhD was obtained a maximum of 12 years prior to the proposed deadline for submission of the candidate files. This 12-year period is extended by one year for each absence due to pregnancy, parental or adoption leave, as well as any long-term absence due to illness of the candidate and/or long- term absence due to illness of a first-degree family member.
  • Offer
  • Access to state-of-the-art infrastructure at RMI and KU Leuven;
  • A stimulating research work environment where quality, professionalism and team spirit are encouraged;
  • Different extra-legal benefits are offered both at RMI and KU Leuven;
  • Flexible schedule and possibility to work occasionally from home;
  • Refund of commuting expenses when using public transportation or bicycle;
  • Access to special advantages arranged for employees of the federal scientific institutions and the KU Leuven (e.g. possibility to follow trainings, childcare, etc.);
  • The opportunity to interact with several world-class investigators at both institutions and the Belgian climate center, as well as in Europe and abroad (through an established network and research consortia);
  • For KU Leuven a contract as research expert (postdoctoral researcher) in the research management staff category is offered;
  • At RMI, the salary will follow federal regulations for the scientific career in the SW2 scale, with possibility to acquire a bilingualism bonus;
  • All relevant work experience (public + private sector) will be considered when determining seniority.
  • Employment is possible at the earliest from 1 September 2023 and the starting date is negotiable.
  • Interested?

    Your application should include:

  • an extensive CV (including a complete publication list);
  • a description of your five most important publications or realizations;
  • a statement of research interests and career goals, indicating why you are interested in this position;
  • contact information of 2 potential referees;
  • your diploma: the copies of the PhD diploma. If you have a foreign diploma in a language other than our national languages (Dutch, French or German) or English, you must attach a corresponding translation into one of the above languages.
  • Maternity leave, long-term sick leave, parental leave, career leave or other absences are taken into account when assessing the time available to realize scientific output.

    The online interviews take place Monday May 8, 2023 in the afternoon. Shortlisted candidates will be notified about one week in advance.

    For additional information about the project and the position, please contact the promoters: prof. Nicole van Lipzig ([email protected]) or dr. Bert Van Schaeybroeck ([email protected]).

    For additional information about the selection procedure, please contact Mrs. Michelle Duhen ([email protected]) or Mrs. Ann Gevers ([email protected])

    The RMI abides to the Gender Equality Plan.

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    KU Leuven seeks to foster an environment where all talents can flourish, regardless of gender, age, cultural background, nationality or impairments. If you have any questions relating to accessibility or support, please contact us at [email protected]

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