The HafenCity University Hamburg (HCU) was founded in 2006 as a merger of four departments from three Hamburg’s universities. Various fields dealing with the built environment were brought together under one roof, including architecture, geomatics, civil engineering and urban planning, complemented by the degree course „Metropolitan culture“. At the HCU, a fixed term research position (part-time) is offered for immediate placement in Hamburg until 30.09.2013 as a

research associate (PhD position) salary scale 13 TV-L

in the field of „governance processes and capacities of adaptive urban and regional development“ as part of the research group “Climate Change and Spatial Development”.

The interdisciplinary research group “Climate Change and Spatial Development: Adaptation Strategies of Urban and Regional Planning in Urban Regions of the Baltic Sea Coast” is fully funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research under its Social- Ecological Research Programme within the Framework Programme "FONA - Research for Sustainable Development". The research group is based in the Department of Urban Planning and Regional Development at the HafenCity University Hamburg (HCU).

Working together with planning practitioners and stakeholders form urban regions of the Baltic Sea region on a transdisciplinary basis, the aim is the development of integrative strategies and processes with regard to the adaptation of urban regions to the effects of climate change, explicitly taking into account the related uncertainties and knowledge limitations. To this aim, natural, social and planning scientists co-operate intensively within the research group.

Working on a doctoral dissertation will be a fundamental part of the sub-project. It aims at analyzing the governance processes and structures of spatial development in selected coastal regions of the Baltic Sea region concerning their present strategies to adapt to the effects of climate change and their adaptability dealing with the challenges of climate change. In this regard, the level of transnational co-operation as well as of individual urban regions of the Baltic Sea region can be examined. The main focus lies on dealing with different types of uncertainty in governance processes with regard to the relevant levels.

Moreover, the candidate should intensively participate in the interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary research activities with regard to the issues concerning social-ecological resilience in urban regions.

What do we expect from you?

  • Precondition is a Diploma or Master degree with above average grades in sociology, human geography, urban and regional development, spatial planning, urban and regional planning, environmental sciences or other sciences which are relevant with regard to the announced topic
  • In-depth knowledge and research experience within the subject area of governance

Considered as an advantage

  • In-depth knowledge and professional experience in the subject area of adaptation to the effects of climate change – with regard to adaptation on the local and on the regional level as well as the relevant theoretical concepts
  • Knowledge of and experience with inter- and transdisciplinary research
  • Professional experience within the research context
  • The ability to communicate effectively within the research context and with regard to the co-operation with project partners
  • Commitment and initiative, ability and motivation to work in a team, to work independently and to do conceptual work
  • Computer literacy regarding the standard MS-Office programs (Word, Excel etc.)
  • High proficiency in English and a good command of German, orally and written. Proficiency in other languages, preferably Swedish or Latvian, is considered as an advantage
  • Willingness and ability to take occasional research trips within the framework of the project (Baltic Sea region)
  • Basic knowledge of business and
  • Knowledge of project management

Working at HafenCity University provides the challenging opportunity to contribute to the profiling and development of an international top class university in the fields of education and research related to the development and quality of our built environment.

The HafenCity University aims to raise the share of women in its organization. Therefore, especially women are invited to apply. Also, applications of disabled persons will be treated with preference in the context of the Sozialgesetzbuch (SGB IX). In this regard, applicants are requested to enclose appropriate proof to their application.

If you have any questions or require more information, please feel free to contact Ms. Sonja Deppisch via E-Mail (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.). For further information on the research group our website at:

Please send the usual and relevant application documents as soon as possible and no later than July 18, 2011 to:

AdHOCH, Personalverwaltung, Az.: 2011-24 WiMi Klimawandel_Raumentwicklung, Nagelsweg 39, 20097 Hamburg

Or send your complete application in digital form via e-mail to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Please use the file number „2011-24 WiMi Klimawandel_Raumentwicklung" in the subject line.

Unfortunately, due to the large number of applications the HafenCity University Hamburg is not able to send originals back. Therefore, please do not submit original documents. If you would like us to return your application documents, you must enclose a sufficiently stamped and addressed envelope.