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Research Engineer in Coastal Ecology and Biogeochemistry
Ifremer | Tremblade, France | Deadline: 18 Aug 2019

Job title : Research Engineer in Coastal Ecology and Biogeochemistry

Reference:  PV-2019-073

Department/Office :  Département Oceanographie et Dynamique des Ecosystemes - Unité Littoral

Laboratoire Environnment Ressources Pertuis Charentais

Duty station:  Tremblade, Poitou-Charentes, FR , France

Deadline for applications : 18/08/2019

The Institute and the recruiting departement 

French Research Institute for Exploitation of the Sea, Ifremer, through its research work and expert advice, contributes to knowledge of the oceans and their resources, to monitoring of marine and coastal environments and to the sustainable development of marine activities. To these ends, Ifremer conceives and operates tools for observation, experimentation and monitoring, and manage the oceanographic databases.

Created in 1984, Ifremer is a French public institute of an industrial and commercial nature. It is supervised jointly by the Ministry of Higher Education and Research and the Ministry of the Environment, Energy and Marine Affairs.

Ifremer undertakes research missions, offers expert advice and acts as a funding agency.

Ifremer performs targeted applied research to address the questions posed by society (climate change effects, marine biodiversity, pollution prevention, seafood quality etc.). Results include scientific knowledge, technological innovations, and systems for ocean observation and exploration. Partnerships may be public, private or a combination of the two.

Ifremer works in a network with the French scientific community, also collaborating with international partner organizations, in the frame of several national and international projects, including contractual activities.

The host organization

 In the Department of Oceanography and Ecosystem Dynamics (Océanographie et Dynamiques des Ecosystèmes — ODE), the LITTORAL Unit (UL) is made up of nine Environment and Resources Laboratories (Laboratoire Environnement et Ressources LER) covering the entire metropolitan coastline. Its main tasks are coastal observation, monitoring the quality of shellfish products in the natural environment, studying coastal ecosystems and advising public authorities on expertise and advice. The Environment and Resources Laboratory of Pertuis Charentais (LER/PC) operates from Saint-Gilles Croix de Vie in the north to the right bank of the Gironde in the south. It provides scientific and technical expertise on marine and estuarine ecosystems integrating the quality of coastal waters and shellfish resources. It intervenes in the following fields :

  • Support to the decentralised state services and territorial authorities of the two departments (North Vendée and Charente-Maritime) through the issuance of expertise and advice in the areas of the coastal environment and shellfish resources
  • Implementation of national observation and surveillance networks in the ERL geographical area of competence
  • Participation in studies and research projects carried out in coordination with the thematic units of Ifremer and local academic partners, in the fields of hydrobiology (phytoplankton and bacterial dynamics) and biogeochemistry (horizontal and vertical flows of carbon and nutrients).

Within the LITTORAL Unit, this position of research engineer, positioned in La Tremblade, will be placed under the hierarchical responsibility of the head of Environment and Resources Laboratory of Pertuis Charentais.

Main Missions

The engineer will conduct expertise activities, study and support for research in the field of the coastal environment and more specifically in coastal ecology and biogeochemistry in the coastal area of the Charentais Pertuis

 Laboratory expertise is currently focused on water quality monitoring, and on relationships between environment and shellfish production. The holder of the post will respond to requests for advice in all or part of these areas. Studies and research focus on understanding phytoplankton and bacterial dynamics as well as nutrient and carbon biogeochemistry (horizontal and vertical fluxes). In order to enhance the expertise and scientific study capacity of the LER-PC, the holder of the post will carry out projects/studies in the coastal field for example on benthic processes and flux and their interactions with wild/cultivated species.

The missions of this engineer will ultimately contribute to a (i) better characterisation of major ecological functions and linkages with biodiversity in anthropogenic coastal environments (ii) better definition of ecosystem services.

Main activities

He/she will respond to advice and expertise under the Institute’s ISO 9001 (P9 process) quality process will be addressed on a priority basis, with specific attention to:

- Watershed management and coastal ecosystems

- Environmental/ shellfish culture
- Marine Protected Areas
- Port dredging

He/she will be involved in laboratory studies/research to measure and characterise flows and processes at the sediment/water interface and associated benthos-pelagos couplings of the coastal zone, at land-aquatic exchange interfaces, taking into account the different processes (biological, hydrodynamic, and sedimentological).

-He/she will contribute to support for the public policies projects or research and operational activities related to laboratory-led environmental observation networks

-He/she will participate in the responses to internal and external calls for tender (regional, national and European)

- It will support and/or take over the assembly and coordination of study and research projects

- He/she will oversee and value scientific work

- He/she will participate in the report of the activities of the LER-PC

Scientific collaborations

Internally: all ERL-PC staff, DYNECO (LEBCO, PELAGOS, DHYSED), other LERs and other research departments (RBE, REM, IRSI).

Externally: various local stakeholders (prefectures and deconcentrated services of the State, local authorities, public institutions, Marine Protected Areas, National Nature Reserves, Grand Port Maritime and other port establishments etc.) and universities (La Rochelle, Bordeaux, Nantes, etc.).


Engineer with a specialisation in marine environment and/or PhD in marine and environmental sciences.

Experience in coastal ecosystems is required.

Technical skills/professions

  • Marine biology
  • Coastal ecology
  • Coastal biogeochemistry
  • In situ and laboratory approaches/measurements, specifically water/sediment fluxes
  • Analysis and applied statistical tools
  • Hydrodynamic and biogeochimical modelling

Personal qualities (know-how)

  • Rigor, organization and availability
  • Initiative and ability to synthesize
  • Ability to coach and work as a team
  • Adaptability and autonomy
  • Ability to work in the field
  • Ability to write and disseminate scientific results (written / oral)
  • Proficiency in oral and written English


  • Full time
  • Variable/flexible schedules
  • Extended screen work
  • Field work
  • Coastal embarkation