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PhD Studentship: Human impacts on soil health in upland managed and rough grazing land

Another funded PhD Studentship opportunity!

Human impacts on soil health in upland managed and rough grazing land: Exploring variability emerging from human-soil interactions at the Finzean Estate (Scotland).

This project will investigate the ongoing impacts of past human actions which physically reshaped the land’s surface on soil health. The project will use the upland grazing areas of the Finzean Estate in Deeside as a study area, working in partnership with the landowners and estate managers. To investigate spatial and temporal scales and the combined impacts of human activities past and present in this landscape type, the project will combine archaeological information, providing insights into broad patterns of past human activities over 1000s of years, with agricultural data, providing essential information on recent management, and with field-based data to characterise local topography, vegetation and soils. Its results will help to build new models of how landscapes and healthy soils are formed, informing innovative approaches to farmland management in response to contemporary environmental and climate crises.

The project is supervised by an interdisciplinary team of experts in soil science (Matt Aitkenhead and Malcolm Coull, James Hutton Institute), archaeological remote sensing (Rachel Opitz, University of Glasgow) and geotechnical engineering (Ehsan Jorat, Abertay University), in partnership with the Finzean Estate.

Application Deadline: 12 June 2023.

See all the details on the project and how to apply at:

#phd #opportunity #sustainableagriculture #agritech #archaeology #heritage #sustainability #geoscience

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ipaast – linked PhD studentship opportunity

Past in present soils: Leveraging development-led archaeological data to generate insights into urban soil development and soil health

The University of Glasgow and Museum of London Archaeology (MOLA) are pleased to announce a fully funded doctoral studentship from October 2023 under the AHRC’s Collaborative Doctoral Partnership Scheme.

Supervisors: Rachel Opitz and John MacDonald (Glasgow), Pete Smith (Aberdeen), Eduardo Machicado Murillo and Diego Rodrigo Maganto (MOLA)

Start date: 01 October 2023

Application Deadline: 5 May 2023

Interview dates to be scheduled with candidates for May 2023

Full details are at:


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Research Associate in Remote and Near Surface Sensing – Archaeology / Agriculture Cross-Domain Applications 

University of Glasgow Archaeology is seeking a Research Assistant to join the project “Developing a method for studying the Critical Zone: Connecting Archaeological and Precision Agricultural approaches to agrarian landscapes by making their advanced sensing data interoperable”, funded by the British Academy. 

This position is available on a fixed-term basis for approximately 22 months, and the candidate will ideally start in June 2021. The appointment will be for the equivalent of 0.5 FTE, with work scheduled and home / remote working arrangements as agreed with the line manager. 

The successful candidate will have a good understanding of current issues and future directions within the broad domains of archaeological near-surface prospection (geophysics) and remote sensing (aerial survey). They will have knowledge of technical models, equipment or techniques related to archaeological remote or near-surface sensing and relevant fieldwork experience. They will also have knowledge of models and techniques for geospatial data integration and technical competence in management and analysis of geospatial data. Knowledge in soil science, environmental science, heritage management, or agricultural science is desirable.  

The successful candidate will be expected to contribute to the management and direction of this international and multi-stakeholder project; to liaise professionally with colleagues across research, public and industry sectors; to engage with the collection, synthesis and analysis of data and metadata related to remote and near-surface sensing technologies as applied in archaeology and precision agriculture; and to contribute to the formulation and submission of research publications and project impact deliverables. 

Applicants are encouraged to contact Dr. Rachel Opitz (University of Glasgow – and Dr. Philippe de Smedt (Ghent University – regarding the position.   

Salary will be on the University’s Research and Teaching Grade 7, £35,845 – £40,322 per annum. This post has approved funding for 22 months on a part time basis (0.5 FTE).

To apply online for this vacancy and to view further information about the role, please visit the recruitment website.

Closing Date for Applications: 1 June 2021 

Please quote reference 056366 on your application and in any correspondence about this vacancy. 

It is the University of Glasgow’s mission to foster an inclusive climate, which ensures equality in our working, learning, research and teaching environment. 

We strongly endorse the principles of Athena SWAN, including a supportive and flexible working environment, with commitment from all levels of the organisation in promoting gender equality. 

This position is based at the University of Glasgow, charity number SC004401.