GFZ PhD Days

PhD Days on Telegrafenberg invited for an exciting hybrid program – from talks to lab visits, from one-on-one meetings to informal gatherings.

This year's GFZ PhD Days took place at the end of June. The GFZ Graduate Program Team and the GeoGraduate Representatives, in collaboration with many others, put together an exciting program for the 2022 edition that revolved around the GFZ departments. The event provided a great opportunity for all PhD students but also other researchers on the Telegrafenberg to finally meet in person again after almost two years of relative (physical) isolation and exchange their results, expertise and experiences and share their enthusiasm for science. For those who could not be on site, online participation was possible.

Enjoy some impressions in the above slide show.


The program included a face-to-face meeting on Monday afternoon, where Susanne Buiter, our new Scientific Executive Director, presented her vision for PhD education at GFZ. This was followed by a short presentation on Open Science and reproducibility by the two representatives of the Helmholtz Open Science Office, Lea Ferguson and Antonia Schrader. The event was concluded by Wolfgang Graf zu Castell-Rüdenhausen, the new head of the Department of Geoinformation, who sensitized for the pitfalls and possibilities of current Data Science methods.

Getting to know the Departments

The next four days were dedicated to one department each. In addition to presentations of the respective research topics, a series of meetings took place in the building of the Great Refractor, which were organized with the help of the department directors and coordinators. The Doctoral Researchers had prepared 90-second videos with which they presented their own research projects. For watching together, they met at the prominent places of our campus: the great refractor and the reading room of the library.

Lab Visits

Visits to some key laboratories and facilities were organised to appreciate the diversity and wealth of techniques used at GFZ, including Borehole Measurement Devices, the GNSS Hub, GeoBioLab, Wet Lab, and a field trip to the Magnetic field observatory in Niemegk.

One-on-one Meetings with other Scientists

More than thirty GFZ scientists had also offered one-on-one meetings with the PhD students to encourage informal discussions about their research topic, a method they would like to share, or what it means to be a scientist and how to develop a successful career after the PhD.

Social Gatherings

The event was crowned by events that provided space for socializing: the hot dog evening on Monday, the ice cream afternoon on Wednesday and a joint meeting with PhD students from the neighbouring institutes AWI, PIK and IASS over beer and pizza on Friday.



Prof. Jean Braun
Graduate Convenor
Section head 4.7 Earth Surface Process Modelling
Helmholtz Centre Potsdam
GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences
14473 Potsdam
Phone: +49 331 288-27520

Johannes Petereit
Graduate Coordinator
Human Resources
Helmholtz Centre Potsdam
GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences
14473 Potsdam
Phone: +49 331 288-27574


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