PhD candidate in external exposome research

The Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute is a public institution with the mandate to contribute to the improvement of the health of populations internationally and nationally through excellence in research, services, and teaching and training.
Swiss TPH is associated with the University of Basel, and combines research, services, and education and training at the local, national and international level. Over 800 people from more than 70 nations work at Swiss TPH, researching infectious and non-communicable diseases, environment, society and health as well as health systems and interventions.

Within the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health (EPH), our Unit "Environmental Exposures and Health" (EEH) is focused on research related to the many environmental exposures: including air pollution, noise, airborne pollen, heatwaves, green space and electromagnetic fields.

We are looking for a

PhD candidate in external exposome research

Your position

The main points of your future PhD project are:

  • to develop tools to characterize the external Exposome with a focus on the assessment of exposure to the physical-chemical environment including air pollution, noise, urban heat and airborne pollen in close collaboration with international partners
  • to develop fine spatial scale models on a European scale, that can be applied in a large number of European cohort studies of millions of subjects for multiple years to allow life-course health analyses
  • to integrate time activity data to improve individual exposure assessment for selected exposures.

PhD project "Modelling urban environmental risk factors in EXPANSE, a large multi-center Exposome study". We are looking for an enthusiastic and creative researcher to strengthen our unit. You will work in a multi-center study funded by the EU, the EXposome Powered tools for healthy living in urbAN SEttings (EXPANSE). The environment we live in has a significant impact on our health, explaining an estimated 70% of the non- communicable chronic disease burden. As our environment is modifiable, this provides a huge potential for disease prevention. A large number of environmental stressors may jointly affect our health. Leading scientists in Europe and the USA have formalized this perspective as the Exposome concept: the sum of all non-genetic drivers of health and diseases. Interacting with the genome, it defines individual health at different stages throughout the life course. Supported by recent developments in sensor technology, satellite observations, smartphone technology and data sciences, now is the time to move Exposome research from concept to practice. EXPANSE will apply the Exposome concept to the Urban Setting, specifically the complex interplay between the built, social, physico-chemical, food, and lifestyle environment.

The successful PhD candidate will be joining a multidisciplinary research team focusing on exposure modelling, data science, environmental epidemiology, and practical hands-on measurement studies. You will publish the findings as papers in peer-reviewed scientific journals. You will be registered in the PhD program in Epidemiology/Public Health of the University of Basel and the Graduate Campus of the Swiss School of Public Health.

Your profile

We are looking for candidates with the following qualifications:

  • Master degree level in data science, statistics, geographic information sciences, geography, quantitative epidemiology or a similar field
  • Broad interest in environment and health research
  • Strong spirit of team work and initiative and open for collaboration across scientific fields
  • Ambition to contribute to scientific progress as well as to performing societal relevant research
  • Ability to work independently and have good verbal and written communication skills in English and preferably German
  • Experience in processing and managing big datasets and with using geographic analysis systems (ArcMap, QGIS, R) would be an asset
  • Good communication and organizational skills

We offer you

The successful candidate will be employed by Swiss TPH at the salary rate defined by the Swiss National Science Foundation for doctoral students. The PhD position will be for a period of three years. The working place will be Swiss TPH – an institute associated with University of Basel, Basel, Switzerland. The position may start from 1 September 2020 onwards.

Application / Contact

Please submit your application online via the link provided below
We look forward to receiving your online application (in English) with:

  • CV
  • Motivation letter
  • MSc course transcripts including grades
  • Names and contact information (email or phone) of 2 references

There is no closing date for application, but we encourage applicants to submit their application as soon as possible. As long as the position is published on the website of Swiss TPH it is still open.

Please note that we can only accept applications via our online recruiting tool: Applications via e-mail or external recruiter will not be considered.

For further information, please visit our website:

Job Profile
Start Date: 1 September 2020
Location: Basel, Switzerland
Duration: limited, three years
Percentage: 80-100%

For additional information please contact Sonja Bühler, HR Recruiter (+41 61 284 87 78). Apply

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University of Basel



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