Post-doctoral fellow in Molecular Plant Biology (PA2023/622)

Updated: 6 months ago
Job Type: FullTime
Deadline: 01 Apr 2023

Subject description
The employment is part of the 5-year project “PlantEra – Biomolecular and structural comparisons of ancient and modern plants– tools for tracing phylogeny and survival strategies during mass extinctions”; . Within the project framework, exceptionally well preserved 50-200 million year old plant remains will be studied including plant groups that survived several mass extinctions, while others went extinct. We aim to identify subcellular differences between the survivors and those that perished. Fossils will be compared with modern related plants regarding microstructure, biomolecules and trace elements, using multiple methodologies. In parallel, modern relatives of ancient plant species will be investigated for molecular responses to paleomimetic growth and stress environments. Functional properties will be modeled based on structural characteristics. This project will provide a unique insight into evolutionary biomolecular relationships between extinct plant groups and our modern flora, and gain information about the adaptation of plants to drastic environmental changes and contribute knowledge about physical functions that control the resilience and survival of plants under critical environmental conditions. 

Work duties
The main duties involved in a post-doctoral posistion is to conduct research. Teaching may also be included, but up to no more than 20% of working hours. The position shall include the opportunity for three weeks of training in higher education teaching and learning.

The major duties will be to:

  • Detail design, management and performance of paleomimetic growth and stress experiments, including anatomical, physiological and genetic response analyses.
  • In collaboration, detect and identify molecular signatures and subcellular structures in fossil or mummified plant parts by diverse microscopy and synchrotron biomolecular methodologies.
  • Practical management of communication with paleobotanists and modelling specialists within the project consortium.
  • Develop and suggest plans for furthering the project activities.
  • Supervision of postgraduate and undergraduate students within the project.
  • Management of some equipment used in the project and sharing responsibility for for the functionality of laboratory resources.
  • Applying for external research funding
  • Communication of discoveries to academia and society, including the writing and publication of manuscripts and presentations in conferences. 

Qualification requirements
Appointment to a post-doctoral position requires that the applicant has a PhD, or an international degree deemed equivalent to a PhD, within the subject of the position, completed no more than three years before the last date for applications. Under special circumstances, the doctoral degree can have been completed earlier. Documentation of the PhD degree must be included in the original application.

Additional requirements:

  • Very good oral and written proficiency in English.
  • A degree in plant biology with a molecular component or molecular cell biology including plants as a study material, or similar.
  • A good track record of publishing peer-reviewed academic papers 
  • Experience in investigating biological functions of genes and proteins in plant organs and/or cells using molecular methods
  • Experience of plant bioinformatics including gene and protein database work.
  • Experience of microscopy analysis
  • Ability to work efficiently both independently and as a member of a small team.
  • Ability to organize resources, plan and progress work activities, and meet deadlines effectively and consistently.
  • Ability to communicate scientific results and knowledge to students and non-specialists.

Assessment criteria and other qualifications
This is a career development position primarily focused on research. The position is intended as an initial step in a career, and the assessment of the applicants will primarily be based on their research qualifications and potential as researchers.

Particular emphasis will be placed on research skills within the subject, the ability to develop and conduct high quality research, collaborative skills, drive and independence.

For appointments to a post-doctoral position, the following shall form the assessment criteria:

  • A good ability to develop and conduct high quality research.
  • Teaching skills. 

Additional assessment criteria:

  • Education or otherwise obtained special knowledge and knowhow on the paleobiology and stress biology of plants is of merit.
  • Documented ability and experience in practical and in silico molecular physiology work with plants is of merit.
  • Documented ability and experience of supervising students, individually and in groups, is. of merit.

Consideration will also be given to how the applicant’s experience and skills complement and strengthen ongoing research within the department, and how they stand to contribute to its future development.

Terms of employment
This is a full-time, fixed-term employment of 3 years. The period of employment is determined in accordance with the agreement “Avtal om tidsbegränsad anställning som postdoktor” (“Agreement on fixed-term employment as a post-doctoral fellow”) between Lund University, SACO-S and OFR/S, dated 1st February 2022. Start date: as soon as possible according to agreement.

Instructions on how to apply
Applications shall be written in English and be compiled into a PDF-file containing:

  • Résumé/CV, including a list of publications
  • A general description of past research and future research interests, including methodological knowhow (no more than three pages)
  • Contact information of at least two references, including the previous main supervisors
  • Copy of the doctoral degree certificate.
  • Grades for the PhD, MSc, and BA studies, and other certificates/grades that you wish to be considered

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