Junior Research Scientist on the role of deep rooting in the acquisition of resources and carbon storage in soils


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INRAE presentation

The French National Research Institute for Agriculture, Food, and the Environment (INRAE) is a public research establishment under the dual authority of the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Research.

INRAE is recruiting researchers by open competition and offering permanent position.

It is a major player in research and innovation created on 1st of January 2020. INRAE is a research institute resulting from the merger of INRA and IRSTEA. It is a community of 12,000 people with more than 200 research units and 42 experimental units located throughout France.

The institute is among the world leaders in agricultural and food sciences, in plant and animal sciences, and is 11th in the world in ecology and environment. INRAE’s main goal is to be a key player in the transitions necessary to address major global challenges. In the face of the increase in population, climate change, scarcity of resources and decline in biodiversity, the institute develops solutions for multiperformance agriculture, high quality food and sustainable management of resources and ecosystems.

Work environment, missions and activities

The Eco&Sols (Functional Ecology & Biogeochemistry of soils & Agro-ecosystems) Joint Research Unit conducts research on the understanding of processes and factors determining the flow and stores of carbon and nutrients, in particular nitrogen and phosphorus, between soil-root systems and plants in agroecosystems. Your work will be part of one of the unit's three research themes entitled "Soil/plant interactions and biogeochemical couplings" and will contribute to the challenge of evaluating the role of root-soil interactions, including deep horizons, in nutrient cycles.
Your objective will be to account for the importance of roots, including deep roots, in complex agroecosystems such as agroforestry systems. Your research will focus on the biogeochemical cycles of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus, as well as their coupling, and on the importance of deep rooting in the acquisition of resources as well as in microbial functioning and storage of carbon in deep soil horizons. More precisely, you will seek to identify the functional traits of deep roots in a continuum integrating rhizosphere processes and those controlling flows inherent to root turnover. Your research will contribute to reasoning the spatial arrangements of plant assemblies in multi-species agroecosystems and to estimate the contribution of deep roots, via carbon storage, to the mitigation of climate change. It will also enrich crop selection strategies by taking into account deep rooting.
You will benefit from the multidisciplinary environment (biogeochemistry, soil ecology, agro-ecosystem ecology, plant ecophysiology) of the Eco&Sols unit and from the diversity of its partners.

Driving licence for fieldwork

Training and skills

PhD or equivalent

Candidates must have a PhD or equivalent.
In-depth skills in functional ecology are highly recommended. Knowledge of biogeochemical cycles would be highly desirable. Experience in modelling the fate of organic matter would be an advantage. Knowledge of terrestrial ecosystems is recommended.
Candidates should have a good command of English, and long-term international experience would also be desirable. Successful candidates who have not yet acquired this experience abroad will be required to do so after their probationary period (1st year).

INRAE's life quality

By joining our teams, you benefit from:

- 30 days of annual leave + 15 days "Reduction of Working Time" (for a full time);
- parenting support: CESU childcare, leisure services;
- skills development systems: training, career advise;
- social support: advice and listening, social assistance and loans;
- holiday and leisure services: holiday vouchers, accommodation at preferential rates;
sports and cultural activities;
- collective catering.

Offer reference

  • Profile number: CR-2021-AGROECOSYS-1
  • Corps: CRCN
  • Category: A
  • Open competition number: 4

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