ISOE - Institute for Social-Ecological Research, based in Frankfurt am Main (Germany), is one of the leading independent institutes for sustainability research. For more than 30 years, the institute has been developing scientific bases and sustainable concepts for politics, civil society and the economy – regionally, nationally and internationally.

In our research area "Water Resources and Land Use" we have a vacancy for an

internship with subsequent master's thesis

The intern will work in the junior research group 'regulate' which deals with sustainable management of groundwater against the background of climate change and remote effects (telecouplings). He*she will mainly contribute to a case study in south-eastern Spain (La Mancha Oriental region, Albacete province). Following the internship, there is the possibility to write a master’s thesis as part of the project. Envisaged tasks include:

  • Research on groundwater conflicts in south-eastern Spain, the implementation of the EU Water Framework Directive and the impact of remote water transfers
  • Contributions to publications and presentations
  • Planning and realisation of a qualitative social empirical study as part of a master's thesis with the possibility of collecting data on site

The weekly working time during the internship is 40 hours (this is equivalent to a full-time internship) and is remunerated with 450€ per month. The duration of the internship is six to twelve weeks. During the preparation of the master's thesis, there is the possibility to be employed as a research assistant with an hourly wage of 14€. We will financially support a research stay in Spain.

You are studying human geography or a comparable subject and would like to experience scientific work processes in a transdisciplinary setting? You are thinking about writing your master's thesis on water problems in Spain? You enjoy communicating in Spanish as well as in English or German?

Then please e-mail your written application by October 17, 2022 as one single PDF document (max. 8 MB) to . The subject line must be “Regulate”. Your application should include a motivational letter, your CV, certificates and a list of university courses attended so far. In your motivational letter, please specify your main areas of interest with regard to the content and methodology of a possible master's thesis as part of our project, as well as a suitable time frame for the internship and for the master's thesis. If you have any questions concerning the position, please contact David Kuhn () or Dr. Fanny Frick-Trzebitzky ().


Further information about ISOE, the regulate project and our research interest:


Boelens, Rutgerd; Hoogesteger, Jaime; Swyngedouw, Erik; Vos, Jeroen; Wester, Philippus (2016): Hydrosocial territories: a political ecology perspective. In: Water International 41 (1), S. 1–14. DOI: 10.1080/02508060.2016.1134898.

Esteban, Encarna; Dinar, Ariel; Albiac, José; Calera, Alfonso; García-Mollá, Marta; Avellá, Lorenzo (2016): The Political Economy of Water Policy Design and Implementation in the Jucar Basin, Spain (UCR SPP Working Paper Series).

Luetkemeier, Robert; Frick-Trzebitzky, Fanny; Hodžić, Dženeta; Jäger, Anne; Kuhn, David; Söller, Linda (2021): Telecoupled Groundwaters: New Ways to Investigate Increasingly De-Localized Resources. In: Water 13 (20), S. 2906. DOI: 10.3390/w13202906.

Morote, Alvaro-Fancisco; Hernández, María; Rico, Antonio; Eslamian, Saeid (2020): Inter-basin water transfer conflicts. The case of the Tagus-Segura Aqueduct (Spain). In: International Journal of Hydrology Science and Technology 10 (4).

Powis, Anthony (2021): The Relational Materiality of Groundwater. In: GeoHumanities 7 (1), S. 89–112. DOI: 10.1080/2373566X.2021.1925574.

Sanz, David; Vos, Jeroen; Rambags, Femke; Hoogesteger, Jaime; Cassiraga, Eduardo; Gómez-Alday, Juan José (2019): The social construction and consequences of groundwater modelling: insight from the Mancha Oriental aquifer, Spain. In: International Journal of Water Resources Development 35 (5), S. 808–829. DOI: 10.1080/07900627.2018.1495619.

Stefano, L. de; Fornés, J. M.; López-Geta, J. A.; Villarroya, F. (2015): Groundwater use in Spain: an overview in light of the EU Water Framework Directive. In: International Journal of Water Resources Development 31 (4), S. 640–656. DOI: 10.1080/07900627.2014.938260.