Junior Research Scientist in biogeochemistry - Soil N2O emission drivers


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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 BioEcoAgro joint research unit brings together several research groups on both sides of the French/Belgian border in the field of biological engineering applied to agriculture, biotechnology, agri-food and the environment. The team you will join focuses on the integrated functioning of the soil-plant system and exchanges between the ecosystem, the hydrosphere, and the atmosphere, particularly under the influence of cropping systems and in a context of climate change. The team is made up of INRAE staff in France, as well as staff from the University of Liège Gembloux Agro-Bio Tech in Belgium.

Nitrous oxide (N2O) emissions resulting from the biotransformation of nitrogen in soils account for around half of greenhouse gas emissions from the agricultural sector. Crop species choice, farming practices and, in particular, nitrogen fertilisation management, are levers for modulating these emissions. However, the average effect of each agricultural practice considered individually is often small even though some combinations of practices and soil and climate conditions can result in very high emissions. It is essential to identify the situations that are likely to give rise to high emissions, which are often extremely localised in time and space, so as to target and optimise climate change mitigation efforts.

In this context, you will develop an ambitious research programme aiming (i) to improve identification of agro-pedoclimatic combinations presenting a high risk of N2O emissions in field crops, and (ii) to identify the determining factors so as to facilitate the design and implementation of mitigation strategies. To implement this research programme, you will draw on the analysis of existing datasets and the set-up of experiments, benefiting from the team's solid expertise in measuring and modelling greenhouse gas flows, as well as from the experimental facilities available within the host unit.

You may be required to conduct experiments in the laboratory, in growth chambers or greenhouses, and outdoors in experimental fields. Travel to experimental sites is expected.
Possession of a driving license is recommended.

Training and skills

PhD or equivalent

Candidates must have a PhD or equivalent.

Training in the field of biogeochemical cycles or agronomy is highly recommanded. Experience in the field of biogeochemistry/flow measurements and data analysis would be appreciated.

Candidates should have a good command of English (both written and spoken), 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.

For international scientists: please visit your guide to facilitate your arrival and stay at INRAE

Offer reference

  • Profile number: CR-2024-AGROECOSYSTEM-6
  • Corps: CR
  • Category: A
  • Open competition number: 18
Living in France and working at INRAE Our guide for international scientists

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