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PhD Position in the Area of Agricultural Economics / Development Studies / Geography

Leibniz-Institut für Agrarentwicklung in Transformationsökonomien (IAMO) / Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Development in Transition Economies (IAMO) / Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg. Halle (Saale), Samarkand (Usbekistan), 22.05.2018

The Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Development in Transition Economies (IAMO) and Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg (MLU), both in Halle (Saale), Germany, in conjunction with Samarkand Agricultural University (SamAI) in Uzbekistan as well as the Regional Environmental Centre for Central Asia (CAREC) in Almaty, Kazakhstan, announce the establishment of an innovative

Structured Doctoral Programme on
"Sustainable Agricultural Development in Central Asia" (SUSADICA)

that is financially supported by the Volkswagen Foundation in Germany and the Ministry of Innovative Development as well as the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Uzbekistan. The academic consortium invites applications for

10 PhD positions in the areas of agricultural economics, development studies and geography

for 36 months periods. Extension by another 12 months is optional and conditional on performance. Expected starting date is by 1 October 2018 or as soon as positions are filled.
Given the fundamental importance of agriculture for sustainable development in Central Asia, the SUSADICA Doctoral Programme pursues cutting edge research on the three dimensions of economic, social and ecological sustainability and creates a challenging, collaborative research environment for doctoral researchers based in Samarkand, Uzbekistan. The Programme intends to act as a model for higher standards of doctoral education, international networking and academic output for other disciplines and universities throughout Central Asia. Current research areas include (1) farm restructuring & labour relations, (2) agricultural innovation & technology, (3) agricultural policy, (4) environmental change & agriculture, and (5) water governance.

Students will spend approximately half of each year in Germany and the other half in Central Asia. During their time in Germany, students work with their German supervisors on their research concept and receive intensive training in relevant theories and methods. During their time in Central Asia, they will conduct field research in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan or Uzbekistan, participate in selected training modules or outreach events and contribute to academic life at SamAI in Samarkand.

MLU is the principal alma mater for the PhD students in Germany, and SamAI for the PhD students in Uzbekistan. All students are expected to achieve a level of sophistication that allows them to successfully pass a doctoral defence in Germany. All students will report to a supervisor based at one of the German partner institutions. The most suitable formal supervision arrangement will be determined on an individual basis.

We expect:
  • Master's degree or equivalent in agricultural economics, development studies, environmental sciences, geography, or related fields;
  • Knowledge of the agricultural sector and rural development in Central Asia;
  • Proven experience in planning, designing and implementing field research and data analysis;
  • Flexibility and interest in primary data collection, e.g. via farm and household surveys or qualitative work in the study regions;
  • Strong commitment to research;
  • Fluency in English reading, writing and presentation;
  • Communication skills in Russian and Central Asian languages are desirable;
  • Openness to integrate into international and multidisciplinary team work;
  • Research experience in Central Asia and in the proposed research topic is of advantage.
We offer:
  • A unique research and qualification opportunity within a team of young scientists;
  • Participation in the German Doctoral Certificate Programme in Agricultural Economics ( with teaching in English language;
  • Organisational and financial support to the collection of relevant data in the region;
  • Support to model development, data analysis, simulations and thesis write-up;
  • Financial support to participation in international and regional academic conferences;
  • Support to the preparation of publications for topical peer-reviewed journals.
  • Preferential access to accommodation in Halle and Samarkand.
The Doctoral Programme is open to applicants of any nationality. Successful applicants obtain a scholarship equivalent to 1400,- EUR/month (tax exempt, excluding health insurance) to cover living costs during their stay in Germany, for up to 18 months. For the time spent in Central Asia, a scholarship to cover local living costs will be provided. Financial support to travel and data collection is available on top of the scholarship. IAMO is an equal opportunity employer and particularly welcomes applications from female candidates. Disabled persons with equal qualifications will be given preference.

Interested candidates should send a set of application documents in English language that include:
  • Letter of motivation (maximum 2 pages), please explain your specific research interests and indicate your preference concerning one of the five SUSADICA research areas described before;
  • Curriculum vitae;
  • Copies of all relevant transcripts and certificates of bachelor, master or equivalent courses as well as English language certificates, if the Master thesis was not written in English;
  • Electronic copies of your master/diploma thesis and (co-) authored scientific publications, if available;
  • Names and contact information of two academic referees.
This set of application documents should be sent by e-mail as a single pdf-file to Prof. Dr. Martin Petrick ( The total size of the single pdf-file should not exceed 5 MB.

Closing date for the application is 31 July 2018. Please note that only short-listed candidates will be contacted for interview via email.

Contact address:
logo Prof. Dr. Martin Petrick
Leibniz-Institut für Agrarentwicklung in Transformationsökonomien (IAMO)
Theodor-Lieser-Straße 2
06120 Halle (Saale)
Please visit for more detailed information.

Bewerbungsschluss: 31.07.2018