Postdoctoral position in Machine Learning for Weather Forecasting
University of Ljubljana, Slovenia
Closing date: 27 October 2023
Faculty: Faculty of Mathematics and Physics, Jadranska 19, 1000 Ljubljana
Department: Department of Physics, Atmospheric Science Group
Contract type: Fixed-term for 2 years starting in the first half of 2024
Salary: 5449/4882 EUR (w. or w/o. family) monthly gross salary
The Atmospheric Science Group at the University of Ljubljana is actively seeking a
Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Machine Learning for Weather Forecasting (all genders)
The primary responsibilities of this position include exploring novel neural-network architectures for machine-learning-based weather prediction and expanding existing ML-based weather prediction models developed in our Atmospheric Science Group. Depending on the candidate’s research interests and prior experience, several aspects of meteorological forecasting can be explored, including:
- Global medium-range weather forecasting
- Limited area weather forecasting and nowcasting
- Subseasonal-to-Seasonal forecasting
- Data assimilation
The Research Fellow will collaborate with Prof. Gregor Skok and other academics in the Atmospheric Science Group (https://meteo.fmf.uni-lj.si/index_eng.html), who already have considerable experience using various ML approaches, as well as other collaborating researchers from established international institutions and universities (for example, Dr Žiga Zaplotnik from the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts)
The Research Fellow will be funded by the EU Marie Skłodowska Curie COFUND SMASH program (https://smash.ung.si/) for the duration of two years. SMASH offers postdoctoral researchers very attractive financial support – a monthly gross salary of 5449/4882 EUR (w or w/o family). For comparison, the average gross salary in Slovenia is about 2025 EUR/month and a single person’s estimated monthly costs are around €800 without rent (https://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/in/Ljubljana). The start of employment is foreseen in the first half of 2024.
The successful applicant will be expected to conduct research of the highest international quality, publish the results in world-leading journals and present them at major national and international conferences.
The university is seeking applicants who already have some experience in using machine-learning-in meteorology, physics, or fluid dynamics, who are already familiar with the state-of-the-art ML-based approaches in this field, and who will be able to propose some interesting and relevant research topics.
The Research Fellow will be granted access to computing resources at the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics as well as the VEGA supercomputer, Slovenia’s first peta-scale supercomputer (https://doc.vega.izum.si/).
The Research Fellow will be located in Ljubljana, Slovenia, at the Faculty of Mathematics and Physics (https://www.fmf.uni-lj.si/en/). Slovenia is a beautiful country of snow-capped peaks, turquoise-green rivers, and Venetian-style coastline (https://www.lonelyplanet.com/slovenia). Slovenia is also among the safest countries in Europe and the world. For the year 2022, Slovenia was ranked as the 7th safest country in the world, the 7th greenest country in the world, 9th most sustainable in the world, and 1st, along with Singapore, among the countries where childhood is most protected, and the quality of life for children is highest (https://www.slovenia.info/uploads/poslovno/Indicators_current_rankings_2022.pdf), providing an excellent environment for work and leisure. Ljubljana is Slovenia’s capital and largest city and is one of Europe’s greenest and most liveable capitals; it was the European Commission’s Green Capital of Europe in 2016 (https://www.lonelyplanet.com/slovenia/ljubljana).
SMASH offers attractive working conditions in beautiful surroundings, excellent personal mentoring from some of Europe’s leading experts across a range of fields, and the chance to develop a powerful set of transferable skills matched to the needs of every individual postdoctoral researcher. This environment will help researchers progress to rewarding careers in today’s rapidly changing world. The SMASH program values an inclusive culture and believes diversity is the key to success, so SMASH warmly welcomes applicants from underrepresented groups.
Who can apply? Holders of a PhD degree, of any nationality, complying with the MSCA-COFUND mobility rule can apply, namely: SMASH fellows must not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in Slovenia for more than 12 months in the three year period before the call deadline.
The candidates can apply via the SMASH online application platform, accessible through the program’s webpage (https://smash.ung.si/). The 2nd SMASH call will be open for applications until 27 October 2023. However, the prospective candidates are strongly encouraged to contact the desired supervisor well in advance of the application deadline since they will need to obtain a mandatory Lettter of Support from the selected host organization and prepare a research proposal description that aligns with the research areas of the host group.
Candidates who are interested in joining the Atmospheric Sciences Group at the University of Ljubljana or require further information should contact Prof. Gregor Skok via email at Gregor.Skok@fmf.uni-lj.si . The candidates should attach a CV highlighting their previous work and publications that might be relevant to the research topic.