"Energy-Water-Air-Health" Interdisciplinary Postdoctoral application program

Environmental governance in China and the world is facing a major turning point. Realization of national and international strategies such as Beautiful China and Carbon Neutrality targets requires a systematic multi-dimensional consideration of socio-economic, energy and climate, as well as resource and environmental factors. Research rooted in multi-element, multi-scale, multi-process integrated assessment models (IAMs) plays a crucial role in coping with the above challenges and bridging the gap between Science and Policy.

The College of Environmental Sciences and Engineering (CESE) at Peking University has been conducting cutting-edge research in the fields of air quality and health impacts, watershed management, energy and climate policy based on IAMs. Through years of efforts, CESE has possessed solid IAMs development and integration capabilities and conducted cooperative research with numerous international institutions. We sincerely invite young scholars devoted to the application and development of IAMs to carry out postdoctoral research in interdisciplinary research at CESE. The relevant research directions and groups are as follows:

  1. Future air quality and its chain effect under the path of socio-economic development. More information: http://scholar.pku.edu.cn/qichen, please contact qichenpku@pku.edu.cn.
  2. Synergies between water resources & water quality and climate targets, socio-economic development, and food security goals. More information: http://www.pkuwsl.org,please contact yongliu@pku.edu.cn.
  3. Nexus between ambitious climate targets and sustainable development goals considering human and land-use systems. More information: http://scholar.pku.edu.cn/hanchengdai/join-us, please contact hancheng.dai@pku.edu.cn

Applicants can apply for various post-doctorate programs at Peking University, including the PKU-IIASA joint postdoctoral fellowship, international exchange postdoctoral fellowship and the BOYA postdoctoral fellowship as follows:

  1. PKU-IIASA Postdoctoral Fellowship Program:


  1. BOYA Postdoctoral Fellowship Program: 


  1. International Exchange Postdoctoral Fellowship Program: 


The remuneration of all these programs is around 50,000 USD per year. Please check more detailed announcement at CESE (English: https://cese.pku.edu.cn/rczp/bsh/130205.htm and Chinese: https://cese.pku.edu.cn/rczp/bsh/130209.htm) for more information and contact the professors above. See more introduction to the research groups and specific recruitment requirements as follows.

1. Introduction to related research groups

1.1 Air Quality and Health Effects Group

The Air Quality and Health Effects Group of Peking University (PKUAirQH) focuses on air quality issues and the potential impact of air pollution on human health. It has established a super station-vehicle-drone-borne combination, and molecular level characterization of the atmospheric environment laboratory simulation, which is a comprehensive research platform integrating numerical simulation of global regional atmospheric environment. PKUAirQH has carried out extensive cooperation with world-class research institutions and is committed to scientific understanding of secondary pollution, and provides scientific and technological support for national and local air pollution prevention and control.

PI: Chen Qi. Prof. Chen is in charge of the major research projects and general projects of the National Natural Science Foundation of China, and national key research and development projects of the Ministry of Science and Technology. She has published over 55 SCI papers, including 5 highly cited papers in the top 1% of ESI, in journals in the environmental field, which have been cited by more than 3000 times. For more information about the research group, please refer to the group's homepage http://scholar.pku.edu.cn/qichen.

Applicants in this direction need to have relevant research experience in air quality models or atmospheric chemical transmission models, strong system analysis and modeling capabilities, and be proficient in programming languages.

 1.2 Watershed Science Laboratory

The Watershed Science Laboratory (PKUWSL) of CESE focuses on meeting the national water governance's strategic needs for water resources, water environment and water ecology, based on a comprehensive "monitoring → simulation → control → management" as a whole Watershed scientific research system, it establishes a first-class innovative research team and international cooperation platform. The research focuses are: understanding and simulating the basic physical, hydrological and ecological processes of the watershed and its associated water bodies; monitoring and simulating the water ecological response to changes in the watershed; establishing the dynamic model and optimization model of the socio-economic and environmental system at the national, regional or watershed scale; develop a comprehensive watershed model system to serve better environmental decision-making; and conduct comprehensive empirical research across disciplines.

PI: Yong Liu, deputy dean of CESE, and deputy director of the National Environmental Protection River Total Material Flux Key Laboratory. Over the past years, Prof. Liu is in charge of National Water Project, 973 Program Youth Project, National Natural Science Foundation Outstanding Youth Fund, etc. He has published more than 100 SCI papers, more than 100 Chinese journal papers, and 8 books. He has won the China Youth Science and Technology Award, the National Environmental Protection Young Top Talent, the First Award of the Ministry of Education Science and Technology Progress, the First of Award of the Environmental Protection Science and Technology, etc. Prof. Liu serves as the deputy editor of the Limnology and Oceanography journal, the editorial board of several domestic and international journals and the Academic Society Standing Committee member. For more information about the research group, please refer to the group's homepage http://www.pkuwsl.org.

Applicants for this direction need to have a background in hydrology, water quality or water resources research; have strong system analysis and modeling capabilities, and be proficient in hydrological or water quality simulation modeling methods or machine learning algorithms.

1.3 Laboratory of Energy & Environmental Economics and Policy

The Laboratory of Energy & Environmental Economics and Policy (LEEEP) of CESE focuses on green & low-carbon transformation and human & planetary health at the local, national and global scales. By developing and applying the state-of-the-art IAMs, the IMED (Integrated Model of Energy, Environment and Economy for Sustainable Development) model, key questions are explored on the mitigation costs of achieving ambitious climate targets and their co-benefits on improvements in air pollution, human health and resource efficiency. The scientific work could provide support for relevant decision-making. LEEEP has established substantive cooperation relationships with first-class research institutions in Europe, America, Japan, and China.

PI: Hancheng Dai, director of the Department of Environmental Management of CESE. Dr. Dai is also a joint appointment research fellow of the Institute for Global Health and Development and the Institute of Area Studies at Peking University. Dr. Dai ranked as the World's Top 2% most-cited scientists released by Stanford University and Mendeley Data in 2020. His main publications, including 8 ESI 1% highly cited papers and over 70 SCI/SSCI papers, are on energy economics and policy-related journals. Dr. Dai is active in multiple international and domestic science programs by serving as the Lead Author of the Global Environment Outlook Sixth Edition (GEO-6) for Cities, Contributing Author of the IPCC 6th Assessment Report, Global Burden of Disease (GBD) Collaborator. He is also the Standing Committee Member of Branch of Ecological and Environmental Systems Engineering, and Committee Member of City Air Integrated Management and Low Carbon Action Partnership of China etc. For more information, please refer to the group homepage http://scholar.pku.edu.cn/hanchengdai.

Applicants for this direction must have a background in energy or climate research, strong data analysis and system modeling capabilities, proficiency in programming languages ​​(such as R, Matlab, Python, or GAMS, etc.), and proficiency or interest on system analysis methods (such as input and output analysis), energy system analysis, industry energy conservation or emission reduction analysis, etc.


2. Postdoctoral project

Applicants can apply for various post-doctorate programs at Peking University, including the Boya postdoc program, PKU-IIASA joint postdoc program or international exchange post-doctorate programs. The remuneration is around 50,000 USD per year.

Application process: Please send all application materials before the specified deadline to qichenpku@pku.edu.cn (direction of air quality and health effects), yongliu@pku.edu.cn (direction of watershed science), or hancheng.dai@pku.edu.cn (direction of energy and climate policy). The email should be entitled "application for xxx postdoctoral + name + unit + mobile phone". Incomplete application materials will not be accepted. After the primary election is passed, candidates will be notified by email or telephone.

2.1 BOYA postdoctoral fellowship

Project Overview

    Peking University established the Boya Postdoctoral Program in 2016, aiming to attract outstanding young talents from all over the world to engage in postdoctoral research and achieve academic excellence. The project provides opportunities for young researchers to engage in post-doctoral research in science, information and engineering, social sciences, humanities, economics and management, and interdisciplinary fields.


  1. Applicants must be under 35 years of age and have obtained a doctorate degree within three years or who will obtain a doctorate degree before July 1 of the following year. Among them, fresh doctoral students who will graduate within the current year can apply for the first round, and fresh doctoral students who will graduate before July 1 of the following year can apply for the second round. Those who have obtained tenure or entered the tenure series cannot apply for this program.
  2. The selected candidates must engage in post-doctoral research full-time;
  3. High level of oral and written English;
  4. Passion in scientific research work, strong system analysis thinking and data modeling ability, the ability to independently engage in scientific research and project work, and have outstanding teamwork and organization and coordination skills.

Application materials

  1. Boya Postdoctoral Program Application Form (completed under the guidance of the co-supervisor), fill out after downloading the attachment on the project announcement webpage, 2021 announcement: https://postdocs.pku.edu.cn/tzgg/125151.htm (description only in Chinese currently);
  2. Two letters of signed recommendation (must include one letter of recommendation from a supervisor during the doctoral period);
  3. A confirmation letter from Peking University's post-doctoral co-supervisor.

Application time

- Deadline for the first round of applications: March 25 each year

- Deadline for the second round of applications: October 15 each year

Note: deadlines may be slightly different each year, please refer to the latest announcement

 2.2 Peking University-IIASA joint postdoctoral fellowship

Project Overview

Peking University (PKU) and the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) have launched the PKU-IIASA International Postdoctoral Fellowship Program to train highly qualified early-career postdoctoral researchers to study in fields of mutual interest at both PKU and IIASA. The fellow will register and conduct research at PKU for 12 months and at IIASA for 12 months with multiple exchange visits between PKU and IIASA.


Applicants that contact us for the energy-water nexus study should have completed their Ph.D. requirements by the start date, but applicants close to completion will also be considered. We seek applicants with research experience on energy/climate issues, and strong analytical skills in integrated assessment modeling, water resource modeling, and/or computable general equilibrium modeling. Proficiency in English is required.

Application materials

  1. Peking University-IIASA postdoctoral program application form (completed under the guidance of the co-supervisor), fill out after downloading the attachment on the project announcement webpage, see the 2021 announcement: https://postdocs.pku.edu.cn/tzgg/125561.htm;
  2. Personal resume;
  3. Two letters of recommendation (must include a letter of recommendation from the supervisor during the doctoral period);
  4. One confirmation letter from the postdoctoral supervisors of both PKU and IIASA.

Important Deadlines

30 April– Applications received and call closes

31 May– Shortlisted candidates will be reviewed in parallel by both PKU and IIASA selection committees

14 June– Final selection will be made by both committees

1 July– Selected fellows will be notified

2 September– Preferred commencement of fellowship

2.3 International Exchange Postdoctoral Program

Project Overview

This program is initiated by the Office of the National Postdoctoral Management Committee. The project supports outstanding foreign (overseas) and overseas PhD students who come to China to engage in postdoctoral research. The number of national funding is limited to 300, and the funding period is two years. Since 2020, the postdoctoral international exchange program has been changed into two patterns:

Pattern 1. Direct funding:

Direct funding is adopted for the selection pattern of "application by individuals, recommendation by institutions, first-come-first-served, and direct funding" for the PhD graduates who have returned from studying abroad and foreign nationals who intend to enter the station in the top 30 universities in the world. From February 1, 2021, online application submission will begin at http://www.chinapostdoctor.org.cn, and the funding will only be used up.

Pattern 2. Experts Evaluation:


  1. The age is not more than 35 years old, and less than three years after obtaining the doctorate degree;
  2. The applicant's doctoral graduate school should be ranked in the top 100 in the world, or ranked as the top 100 in the world by subject (refer to the rankings of Shanghai Ruanke, Times, QS, US News);
  3. For applicants from countries along the "Belt and Road", the conditions can be relaxed to the top 3 in the country with a doctoral degree.

Application materials

Log in to the "Foreign Exchange Program" application system on the Chinese postdoctoral website and fill in the relevant information.

Application time

  1. The first round: Application deadline on April 7th and results announced in May;
  2. The second round: Application deadline on June 10th and results announced in August;
  3. The third group: Application deadline on September 23rd and results announced in November.

Note: There may be slight adjustments to the time each year, please keep an eye on the latest notice released by PKU, see announcement in 2021: https://postdocs.pku.edu.cn/tzgg/125406.htm