EPFL, the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne, is one of the most dynamic university campuses in Europe and ranks among the top 20 universities worldwide. The EPFL employs more than 6,000 people supporting the three main missions of the institutions: education, research and innovation. The EPFL campus offers an exceptional working environment at the heart of a community of more than 16,000 people, including over 12,000 students and 4,000 researchers from more than 120 different countries.

Your mission:

The Laboratory of Cryospheric Sciences (CRYOS) is looking for a PhD student in the area of Sustainable Development of Urban and Peri-Urban environments. Within a large research project of the ETH domain, which studies the development of urban infrastructure towards climate-neutral, sustainable and resource-optimized operation, we are building an urban twin, which includes political and socio-economic aspects of change. Your specific task is on the energy-water nexus in an urban context as well as studying the impact of climate change. You contribute within a large consortium to the urban twin digital infrastructure and collaborate with your colleagues from different disciplines in particular also with those that focus on renewable energy supply.

CRYOS forms part of EPFL’s new Alpine and Polar Environments Research Centre (ALPOLE) in Sion.

The mission of the ALPOLE research center is to address key challenges related to environmental change in Alpine and Polar regions undergoing rapid and unprecedented transformations.

Main duties and responsibilities include:

-Research into optimal balance of energy and water resources in urban and peri-urban environments

-Contribution to the “urban twin” numerical model development with a focus on testing scenarios

-Collaboration with colleagues on interdisciplinary aspects of the project

-Teaching assistantship

Your profile:

– Master’s degree in relevant field (e.g., civil engineering, meteorology, environmental sciences)

– Experience in renewable energy and boundary layer processes

– Experience in water management and hydrology

– Strong motivation for applied research and implementation

– You have strong computational and analytical skills, as well as experience handling large datasets.

– Self-motivated and wiling to learn new things.

– Good interpersonal skills, team player.

– Good knowledge of English and at least one additional Swiss national language (written and spoken).

We offer:

– A dynamic and interdisciplinary research group.

– A vibrant, internationally visible and rising academic institution in alpine and polar environments research.

– A great working atmosphere and ample opportunities for professional and personal development with access to many continuing education courses.

Start date:

May 1, 2023 or as soon as possible.

Work rate:


Duration: 1-year fixed-term contract, renewable for 4 years according to EPFL rules


Interested applicants should send the following documents (in a single pdf) to

  • A CV and contact details of 2-3 references
  • A brief letter of motivation/interest in the project
  • Grades from master and bachelor studies.

Submission deadline for this position: until filled.

To be eligible for a PhD at EPFL, note that candidates also need to apply to the Doctoral Program in Civil and Environmental Engineering (EDCE).


If you have any questions, do not hesitate to contact prof. Michael Lehning:

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