ECMWF – Scientist to work on km-scale land-atmosphere modelling

ECMWF, Bonn, Germany
Closing date: 15 April 2021

ECMWF has an exciting opportunity for a Scientist to work on the H2020 NextGEMS project. The role of this position is to further develop the representation of the land-atmosphere interaction in ECMWF’s Integrated Forecasting System (IFS) as part of NextGEMS.

NextGEMS aims to develop a new generation of global coupled Storm-Resolving Earth System Models (SR-ESMs), exploring kilometre-scale simulations (2-4 km both in the atmosphere and the ocean) with an explicit representation of essential Earth system processes, such as ocean mesoscale eddies, atmospheric deep convection and certain orographic processes.

The position sits in the Earth System Modelling Section of the Research Department. As member of the Coupled Processes team, there will be a lot of collaboration with the Physical Processes and Numerical Methods Teams members, so strong communication and interpersonal skills will be key in this role.

The successful candidate will evaluate and improve the representation of the land surface and of its coupling with the atmosphere at km-scales in the IFS, initialise and conduct coupled simulations at 2-4km resolution, explore the benefits of a km-scale representation of the land surface on near surface meteorology, hydrology, and atmospheric circulation.

The Scientist will help to identify and address model errors in the IFS at km-scale, through targeted diagnostics and numerical experimentation, in close collaboration with teams across ECMWF and NextGEMS partners. They will also contribute to the communication and dissemination of these results to a wide range of stakeholders. Whilst this position will be based in Bonn, Germany, there will be a lot of collaboration with staff based at the HQ in Reading, United Kingdom so it is anticipated that visits to the HQ in Reading will be required.

Main duties and key responsibilities

  • Conducting coupled km-scale simulations and identifying systematic land fluxes errors (e.g. using FLUXNET/FLUXCOM networks or local supersites/observatories)
  • Further developing the land surface modules and their coupling with the atmosphere and inland water cycle in ECMWF’s IFS
  • Validating the components of the surface energy budget, water cycle, momentum budget using near-surface meteorological observations (e.g. SYNOPs/METARs)
  • Contributing to improving the land and vegetation cover, the land-atmosphere coupling strength, and orographic processes at km-scales
  • Evaluating the impacts of resolving land-surface heterogeneities, including orography, on near-surface weather and hydrology and atmospheric circulation
  • Implementing high-frequency data logging at selected observational and renewable energy sites in collaborations with users
  • Managing project deliverables in the framework of the NextGEMS project and contributing to publications, communication activities and reporting
  • Participating in the NextGEMS workshops and hackathons and representing ECMWF and NextGEMS results in relevant meetings

Other information
The successful candidate will be recruited at the A2 grade, according to the scales of the Co-ordinated Organisations and the annual basic salary will be up to EUR 75,178.92 net of tax. This position is assigned to the employment category STF-PL as defined in the Staff Regulations.
Full details of salary scales and allowances are available on the ECMWF website at, including the Centre’s Staff Regulations regarding the terms and conditions of employment.

Starting date: As soon as possible.
Length of contract: Three years, with possibility of a further contract. This is subject to the signing of the grant agreement, expected on 1 April 2021.


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