Postdoc in computational ancient DNA analyses at Lundbeck Foundation GeoGenetics Centre

Updated: 27 days ago
Deadline: 17 Jul 2022

The University of Copenhagen invites applications for a computational postdoctoral research fellow position at the Globe Institute, University of Copenhagen, in the research group of Thorfinn Korneliussen at the Lundbeck Foundation GeoGenetics Centre. 
The position is to be filled from 1 October 2022 or as soon as possible thereafter.

Information on the department can be found at: https://globe.ku.dk/research/geogenetics/ .

Our research
At the Lundbeck Foundation GeoGenetics Centre we will be sequencing thousands of ancient genomes from a period spanning the last 50,000 years of human history, with the objective of elucidating human history, detecting and quantifying natural selection, and identifying environmental correlations of human genetic and demographic changes.
Secondly the GeoGenetics centre are in the process of large scale environmental DNA studies which aims to reconstructing past ecological and evolutionary history, from historical times to hundreds of thousands of years ago

The Korneliussen group specializes in the development of new statistical methods for analyses of low coverage sequencing data and ancient DNA. The methods range from the estimation of population genetics parameters such as admixture, selection, relatedness, association etc., but also general tools for accessing and manipulating sequencing data, methods within environmental DNA analyses and phylogenetics
We expect you to develop and apply statistical methods to answer questions using ancient DNA or environmental ancient DNA. You will have freedom to design projects in consultation with your advisors.

Research environment
You will work at the Lundbeck GeoGenetics Centre, a world-leading institution in ancient DNA studies. The position is for 2 years, and is fully funded. You will have the opportunity to collaborate with leaders in the fields of paleogenomics, population genetics and quantitative genetics, like Eske Willerslev, Rasmus Nielsen, Martin Sikora, Antonio Fernandez-Guerra, Mikkel Pedersen. The University of Copenhagen is ranked the 30th best university in the world according to Academic Ranking of World Universities 2018 (http://www.shanghairanking.com/rankings/arwu/2021). It provides excellent academic programs in biology, statistics, computer science and mathematics. The GeoGenetics Centre is located in central Copenhagen, Denmark – a city that is ranked among the most liveable cities in the world (see e.g. https://placebrandobserver.com/monocle-quality-of-life-survey-25-most-liveable-cities-2018/ at 5:56).

Thorfinn Korneliussen's group is working in applied statistical and computational approaches for analysis of large scale genomic data, especially high throughput sequencing data.  For more information, see www.popgen.dk/software and https://scholar.google.com/citations?user=-YNWF4AAAAAJ&hl=en .

Our local computational infrastructure is a high performance cluster with industry leading EMC scale out storage, but we also have access to multiple supercomputers.

Profile
The candidate holds a PhD or equivalent doctorate with a strong background in one or more of the following areas:

  • Population genetics
  • Human genetics
  • Genomics
  • Computational biology
  • Bioinformatics
  • Machine learning
  • Data science
  • Mathematics and/or statistics.

The ideal candidate will have previous experience in developing statistical methods in populations and a demonstrated working proficiency in programming and statistical computing (e.g. experience in Python, R, C/C++, Java, rust or Julia) and have experience handling large data sets in the UNIX operating environment. Experience in machine learning is welcome but not required.

The postdoc’s tasks will include methodological research within population genetics and human evolution, but may also include performance of other duties such as participation in meetings and in collaborative research projects.

Required qualifications:

  • Holds a PhD or has equivalent qualifications.
  • Experience in genomics, bioinformatics, sequencing data or systems biology.
  • Excellent English skills written and spoken. Proficient communication skills and ability to work in teams
  • Good collaboration, communication and presentation skills
  • Experience in analyzing sequence data and GWAS
  • Proficient communication skills and ability to work in teams
  • Experience with statistical analysis packages such as R or MATLAB.
  • Programming skills in common languages such as Python, Perl or C++.
  • Have published in high-quality international peer-reviewed journals

Personal qualifications:

  • Ambitious and with a strong motivation to obtain established goals
  • Scientifically self-propelling, creative and driven by curiosity
  • Ability to work independently and structured
  • Open-minded and analytical personality

You will have a PhD, or equivalent doctorate, with a strong background in one or more of the following areas: population genetics, human genetics, genomics, computational biology, bioinformatics, machine learning, physics, data science, mathematics and/or statistics. As an ideal candidate, you will have previous experience in developing statistical methods and a demonstrated working proficiency in programming and statistical computing (e.g. experience in Python, R, C/C++, Java) and have experience handling large data sets in the UNIX operating environment. Experience in machine learning is welcome, but not required. 

The postdoctoral fellow’s duties will include methodological research within population genetics and human evolution, but they may also include performance of other duties such as participation in meetings and in collaborative research projects.

Desirable experience and skills:

  • Experience and knowledge about ancient metagenomic analysis is advantageous. 
  • Knowledge about and interest in past environments is considered positively. 
  • Interest in developing analytical pipelines and functionality

Place of employment
The place of employment is at the Section for Geogenetics, Globe Institute, University of Copenhagen. We offer creative and stimulating working conditions in dynamic and international research environment. Our research facilities include modern and ancient laboratories and state of the art computational resources.

Terms of employment
The average weekly working hours are 37 hours per week (full time).

The position is a fixed-term position limited to a period of 2 years. The starting date is on 1 October 2022 or as soon as possible thereafter.

Salary, pension and other conditions of employment are set in accordance with the Agreement between the Ministry of Finance and AC (Danish Confederation of Professional Associations) or other relevant organisations. Currently, the monthly salary starts at DKK 35,624 DKK / approx. EUR 4,780 (April 2022 level). Depending on qualifications, a supplement may be negotiated. The employer will pay an additional 17.1 % to your pension fund.

Foreign and Danish applicants may be eligible for tax reductions, if they hold a PhD degree and have not lived in Denmark the last 10 years.

The position is covered by the Job Structure for Academic Staff at Universities 2020.

Questions
For further information please contact Thorfinn Sand Korneliussen at tskorneliussen@sund.ku.dk or Rasmus Nielsen at rasmus_nielsen@berkeley.edu .

Foreign applicants may find this link useful: www.ism.ku.dk (International Staff Mobility).

Application procedure
Your online application must be submitted in English by clicking ‘Apply now’ below. Furthermore, your application must include the following documents/attachments – all in PDF format:

  • Motivated letter of application (max. one page).
  • CV incl. education, work/research experience, language skills and other skills relevant for the position.
  • A certified/signed copy of a) PhD certificate and b) Master of Science certificate. If the PhD is not completed, a written statement from the supervisor will do.
  • List of publications.

  • Deadline for applications: 17 July 2022, 23.59pm CET
    We reserve the right not to consider material received after the deadline, and not to consider applications that do not live up to the abovementioned requirements.

    The further process
    After the expiry of the deadline for applications, the authorized recruitment manager selects applicants for assessment on the advice of the hiring committee. All applicants are then immediately notified whether their application has been passed for assessment by an unbiased assessor. Once the assessment work has been completed each applicant has the opportunity to comment on the part of the assessment that relates to the applicant him/herself.

    You can read about the recruitment process at https://employment.ku.dk/faculty/recruitment-process/

    The applicant will be assessed according to the Ministerial Order no. 242 of 13 March 2012 on the Appointment of Academic Staff at Universities.

    The University of Copenhagen wish to reflect the diversity of society and encourage all qualified candidates to apply regardless of personal background.


    Part of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), and among Europe’s top-ranking universities, the University of Copenhagen promotes research and teaching of the highest international standard. Rich in tradition and modern in outlook, the University gives students and staff the opportunity to cultivate their talent in an ambitious and informal environment. An effective organisation – with good working conditions and a collaborative work culture – creates the ideal framework for a successful academic career.


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