Scientific Positions

Postdoctoral fellowship in distal tephra modelling and analysis 901075

The Department of Archaeology and Heritage Studies, School of Culture and Society, Faculty of Arts, Aarhus University invites applications for a one-year postdoctoral fellowship, with the potential to extend the contract to two years subject to the provision of continued funding. The appointment begins on 1 September 2017 or as soon as possible thereafter.

Place of work: Moesgaard, Moesgaard Alle 20, 8270 Højbjerg.

The position
The position is affiliated with the project ‘Apocalypse Then? The Laacher See volcanic eruption (13,000 years before present), Deep Environmental History and Europe’s Geo-cultural Heritage’, an interdisciplinary project funded by the Danish Council for Independent Research’s Sapere Aude elite research funding scheme. The project focuses on the Late Pleistocene in northern Europe and aims to evaluate the potential impacts of the Laacher See volcanic eruption, which occurred during this period. The project works across disciplinary boundaries that stretch from risk reduction research via archaeology to volcanology. One research objective is to revisit the dynamics of the Laacher See eruption as seen through its tephra fallout.

We are looking for an innovative scholar with a background in volcanology, preferably with a specialisation in tephra studies and with strong analytical skills focused on fallout modelling and/or laboratory investigations. The postdoctoral fellow is expected to participate in project activities including fieldwork, and in activities at the Department of Archaeology and Heritage Studies and the Department of Geoscience such as lectures, seminars and workshops.

The successful applicant will be associated with Work Package IV of the project, which is aimed at analysing in detail the tephra fallout of the Laacher See eruption, its spatial extent and volume, isochron utility and hazard potential using modelling, geochemistry and sedimentological methods as appropriate. There will also be opportunities for fieldwork, which is aimed at locating new sites at which both tephra and archaeological remains have been preserved. 

The position may involve some teaching commitments as agreed upon with the head of hepartment and the project PI.

Knowledge exchange
The postdoctoral fellow will be expected to exchange knowledge with various sectors of society and to contribute actively to the general public debate in areas related to the position.

For further information about the position, please contact Associate Professor Felix Riede on phone +45 87 16 20 83 or by e-mail

Applicants for this position must hold a PhD degree in volcanology or allied fields. 

Applicants must document:
• experience of tephra analysis
• experience of tephra fallout modelling
• field experience (preferably medial-distal contexts)
• interest in human impacts of volcanic eruptions and their fallout
• an international research profile.

Applicants should be interested in collaborative, interdisciplinary work.

The application must be submitted in English.

For more information about the application please contact HR supporter Marianne Birn,  e-mail

Department of Archaeology and Heritage Studies
At the Department of Archaeology and Heritage Studies and its associated research programme known as Materials, Culture and Heritage (MCH), we are concerned with people and the environment and culture and society from the earliest to modern times, with a focus on studies of material culture. On the basis of fieldwork and library and laboratory studies – including methods from the fields of anthropology, history and a variety of natural scientific approaches – the programme investigates and challenges our understanding of past societies seen in a deep historical perspective. In 2017, the department was ranked 25 in the international QS university ranking (

The MCH research programme at Aarhus University has an international profile and strong research networks. A dynamic research environment provides the framework for large research projects, international conferences and a variety of visiting researchers. The environment is versatile and cross-disciplinary, and the academic staff’s research competences span topics ranging from war and power, mobility and globalisation, family and individual, religion and rituals, landscape and settlement, palaeo-demography and evolution, trade and networks, technology and knowledge exchange to (in particular) quantitative analysis methods, field methodology and digital representation.

For a more detailed description, please visit

Department of Geoscience
The Department of Geoscience has a strong research profile spanning a broad range of geological and geophysical disciplines. We perform basic and applied research, provide consulting services for governmental organisations, and offer research-based teaching at the highest international level with a clear view of the demands of society. We collaborate with the best international researchers and research groups as well as rising academic environments, and with private and public companies and organisations. We are committed to recruiting and retaining the highest quality researchers and staff to work in a culture that supports diversity and equality at all stages of employment, from recruitment to retirement, within a departmental atmosphere of ambition, mentoring and team spirit.

The research performance of the department (volume, impact and excellence) is growing strongly, and we will continue this trend and aim to reach a global ranking of c. 50 by 2020 (NTU). The research focus is characterised within five areas by high growth, large impact and/or high societal significance: Climate & Environment; Water; Energy & Natural Resources; Deep Earth Systems; and Geochronology. The department’s world-class metal-free geochemical analytical facility will create new momentum for all our research areas and degree programmes, as well as enhancing interdisciplinary research and teaching as witnessed by the emerging co-operations with the fields of archaeology and health and medical science. Excellent research is strongly connected to talent development, and the department will actively attract talent and expand its support and mentoring of PhD students, postdocs and junior staff. This is articulated in the general recruitment and gender policy of the department.

The department has strong links to other departments at Aarhus University, including the Department of Archaeology and the Department of Physics and Astronomy.

School of Culture and Society
At the School of Culture and Society the object of research and teaching is the interplay between culture and society in time and space:

 - From the traditional disciplines of the humanities and theology to applied social research
 - From Antiquity to the issues facing contemporary societies
 - From familiar Danish cultural forms to other very different worlds
 - From local questions to global challenges.

The school’s goal is to produce compelling research with an international resonance, as well as offering teaching and talent development of high quality. The school has a broad cooperative interface with society, both in Denmark and abroad, and contributes to social innovation, research communication and further and continuing education.

For a more detailed description of the School of Culture and Society, please see this website


Qualification requirements

Applicants should hold a PhD or equivalent academic qualifications.


All interested candidates are encouraged to apply, regardless of their personal background.


All applications must be made online and received by:

Please apply online here

Faculty of Arts

The Faculty of Arts is one of four main academic areas at Aarhus University.

The faculty contributes to Aarhus University's research, talent development, knowledge exchange and degree programmes.

With its 500 academic staff members, 260 PhD students, 12,500 BA and MA students, and 2,500 students following continuing/further education programmes, the faculty constitutes a strong and diverse research and teaching environment.

The Faculty of Arts consists of the School of Communication and Culture, the School of Culture and Society, the Danish School of Education, and the Centre for Teaching Development and Digital Media. Each of these units has strong academic environments and forms the basis for interdisciplinary research and education.
The faculty's academic environments and degree programmes engage in international collaboration and share the common goal of contributing to the development of knowledge, welfare and culture in interaction with society.


Aarhus University is an academically diverse and research-intensive university with a strong commitment to high-quality research and education and the development of society nationally and globally. The university offers an inspiring research and teaching environment to its 40,000 students and 8,000 employees, and has an annual budget of EUR 860 million Learn more at