Open-ended research position on regional climate modeling
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
(meteo.be) KU Leuven, Leuven (Arenberg). Celestijnenlaan 200e - bus 2409.
3001 Leuven (ees.kuleuven.be)
As a research expert you are responsible to complete the following major
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
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
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.
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
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.
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.
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
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
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]