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The Helmholtz Centre Potsdam – GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences is the national centre for geosphere research. As a member of the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres we are part of the largest scientific organization in Germany. With approximately 1,300 employees our key mission is to secure a profound understanding of the systems and processes of solid Earth, to develop strategies and options for action in addressing global change and its impacts on a regional level, to understand natural hazards and to minimize associated risks, to ensure the sustainable provision of energy and raw materials for a high-tech society and to evaluate the influence of human activity on system Earth.
As a partner in Geo.X, the GFZ has access to an excellent network of other geoscience institutions in Potsdam and Berlin. This largest regional concentration of geoscientific competence in Europe offers first-class cooperation and development opportunities.
For section 1.4: Remote Sensing and Geoinformatics (department “Geodesy”), we are looking for a:

Group leader in global land monitoring (f_m_x)

Reference Number 6143

Are you an innovative researcher willing to impact Earth Observations and the next generation of global monitoring and applications? Do you have experience in large-area monitoring of land surface dynamics, related remote sensing image processing, interpretation and calibration/validation procedures? And are you an enthusiastic teammate willing to join us for successful research, develop a new global monitoring team and expand your scientific career towards a long-term position? Then we like to get you onboard!

As group leader of the new global monitoring team, you will strengthen and innovate research at the Remote Sensing and Geoinformatics Section of the Research Center for Geosciences (GFZ); one of the Helmholtz Centers in Potsdam, Germany. The section strives to establish remote sensing as a core method in geosciences, and for geo- and nature-based solutions. We aim to increase awareness of the considerable value of remotely sensed data for knowledge generation about Earth’s surface properties and processes related to vegetation and soils. The new global monitoring team should foster the next level of global Earth Observation data, tools and products (incl. calibration and validation) from, i.e. hyperspectral, LIDAR, or RADAR time series data (i.e. next generation Sentinels). You will ensure the section continues to evolve into an attractive and innovative environment for a diverse group of people and ideas. You strengthen the profile of the group in national and international networks, and for generating impact both within and outside academia; including a small role in student supervision and university-level education. Do you want to know more about our work? Check out our page with news, recent publications and projects.

Your qualifications:

  • Have a master`s degree and a PhD degree with a proven international scientific track record in the field of land remote sensing, large area processing and monitoring (incl. cloud computing) or a closely related field;
  • Have a clear vision for your future research on how novel Earth Observation approaches can contribute to improve global land monitoring and sustainability;
  • Have developed management and collaboration skills with an inspiring and reflective style that creates synergy and supports people to develop and reach scientific excellence;
  • Are an inspiring team player, educator and supervisor for staff and (PhD) students;
  • Have an international scientific network and are able to interact with professionals and societal partners in the development of research and outreach


Start date: As soon as possible
Fixed-term: For initially 2x3 years with the option for being transformed into a permanent position
Salary: This position has been assessed as being salary group 14 according to “TVöD Bund (Tarifgebiet Ost)”. The salary group will be determined by the conditions of the collective wage agreement and the appropriate personal qualifications.
Working hours: Full-time (currently 39 h/week); The position is, in principle, suitable for part- time employment.
Place of work: Potsdam

What we offer:

  • Ambitious and varied tasks in a dynamic and international research environment
  • State-of-the-art equipment
  • Public service benefits
  • Extensive training opportunities
  • Professional career advice offered by our in-house Career-Centre
  • Flexible working hours and conditions
  • Support with finding a good work-life balance offered by benefit@work
  • Institute day-care centre on site
  • Working at the Albert Einstein science park on the Telegrafenberg in Potsdam
  • Work place within walking distance of Potsdam main train station, or just a short ride on the shuttle bus

Have we piqued your interest?

If so, we look forward to receiving your application by 6th June 2022. Please use our online application form only.

Diversity and equal opportunities are integral components of our human resources policy. The GFZ actively promotes diversity and explicitly welcomes applications from all qualified individuals, regardless of ethnic and social origin, nationality, gender, sexual orientation and identity, religion/belief, age and physical characteristics. Anyone who has been recognized as severely disabled, will be given preferential consideration in the event of equal suitability and qualification in accordance with the provisions of the German Social Code IX. If you have any questions, please contact our representative for the severely disabled at sbv[at]gfz-potsdam.de, who will be happy to assist you in the further application process. In case of further queries regarding gender equality, please do not hesitate to contact our Equal Opportunities Officer at gba[at]gfz-potsdam.de.

Your personal data will be processed for the purpose of conducting the selection procedure on the basis of Art. 6 para. 1 b, Art. 88 GDPR in conjunction with Art. 26 of the Data Protection Act for the State of Brandenburg. After completion of the procedure, application documents will be deleted in compliance with data protection regulations.

In case of any further queries relating to the field of activity, please contact Mr Herold via email at martin.herold@gfz-potsdam.de. If you have any general questions about the application process, please contact Ms Buge under +49 (0)331-288-28787.

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