Ledig stilling på Universitetet i Oslo

Blindern og Urbygningen (Foto: Wikimedia og Colourbox)
Blindern og Urbygningen (Foto: Wikimedia og Colourbox)

Postdoctoral Research fellow in Evolutionary Biology

Deadline: 10.08.2022

Natural History Museum

Universitetet i Oslo

The University of Oslo is Norway’s oldest and highest ranked educational and research institution, with 28 000 students and 7000 employees. With its broad range of academic disciplines and internationally recognised research communities, UiO is an important contributor to society.

The Natural History Museum at the University of Oslo is Norway’s most comprehensive natural history collection. For almost 200 years, specimens of animals, fungi, plants, rocks, minerals and fossils have been collected, studied and preserved here. The museum is located at Økern and in the beautiful Botanical Garden, which is not only popular for recreation, but is a scientific collection in itself.

Job description

Applications are invited for a position as Postdoctoral Research Fellow in evolutionary biology available at the Natural History Museum, University of Oslo. The appointment is for a period of four years. The position will be for a period of 4 years with 25 % compulsory work (e.g., teaching responsibilities and curator work at the museum).

Starting date: End of the year (but negotiable).

More about the position

The candidate will work in association with the ERC Starting Grant project Dissecting the paradox of stasis in evolutionary biology (ROCKS- PARADOX) awarded to Kjetil Lysne Voje. This is a highly collaborative project that includes both national and international partners.

The Voje lab seeks to understand the processes that govern phenotypic evolution along the timescale continuum. Our research uses a wide variety of taxa and we combine empirical work and methods development to obtain a deeper understanding of the connection between microevolutionary processes and the associated evolutionary change that may occur on longer timescales. The position will be affiliated with The Evolution and Paleobiology Group (EPA) at the Natural History Museum in Oslo. EPA is a highly active research group consisting of PhD students, post docs, and permanent staff and provides an excellent scientific and social environment for the candidate.

The paradox of stasis refers to the contrasting observations of phenotypic evolution on short and long timescales; rapid evolution is commonly observed across a few generations in living populations while the fossil record often indicates that species remain more or less unchanged for millions of years. The overarching goal of the ROCKS-PARADOX project is to provide a deeper understanding of evolutionary trait dynamics on timescales in between micro- and macroevolution.

The goal of the postdoc project is to estimate quantitative genetic parameters from fossil and recent bryozoans to investigate to what extent genetic (co)variances evolve and to assess whether measurements of quantitative genetic (co)variance are useful for predicting long-term phenotypic trait evolution. Bryozoa is a phylum of colonial metazoans with an especially rich fossil record. This allows for repeated measurements of genetically identical individuals and therefore estimation of quantitative genetic parameters from ancestor–descendant series of populations from the fossil record.

A large collection of fossil specimens from New Zealand belonging to different bryozoans lineages have already been collected, spanning about two million years of phenotypic evolution. Fieldwork to collect fossil and recent specimens will be part of the project.

The project provides an unique opportunity to study the relative effects of adaptation and constraints over different timescales, testing novel ideas at the intersection between micro- and macroevolution. The ideal candidate will make a major contribution to the planned research, but will also develop his/her own complementary lines of research that reflect the candidate's own expertise and interests, and that fit within the project's main goals.

Qualification requirements

  • Applicants must hold a PhD-degree (or other corresponding education equivalent to a Norwegian doctoral degree) in biology (or related fields) and document a specialization or clear profile in evolutionary biology.
  • We are seeking a highly motivated, enthusiastic and hard-working postdoctoral candidate with the ambition to gain new insights in evolutionary biology and publish papers in leading, international journals. The candidate will generate and analyze large amounts of phenotypic data, so the ideal candidate has a high sense of organization, is able to handle large amounts of data, has experience with morphometrics and data analysis (R programming language, statistical modelling, machine learning), and possess excellent writing skills.
  • Interest in and knowledge of quantitative genetics are particularly appreciated.
  • Applicants must show good interpersonal skills and be willing to work in close collaboration with the project PI and other members of the project team, as well as have the ability to work independently. Applicants should have a good publication record for their career stage.
  • A good command of English is required.

We offer

  • salary NOK 544 400 – 626 300 per annum depending on qualifications in position as Postdoctoral Research Fellow (position code 1352)
  • Career building links with a vibrant international research network with excellent opportunities for building a career in evolutionary biology/paleobiology.
  • A stimulating and friendly working environment.
  • Membership in the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.
  • Attractive welfare benefits and a generous pension agreement, in addition to Oslo’s family-friendly environment with its rich opportunities for culture and outdoor activities.

How to apply

The application must include:

  • A cover letter that includes a statement of motivation and a summary of scientific background and research interests.
  • A CV summarizing education, positions, research profile and merits, pedagogical qualifications, and other qualifying activities.
  • A list of all scientific publications.
  • A one-page statement explaining why the candidate is motivated for the position and how the position fit into the applicant’s career plan.
  • Contact information for two reference persons (name, relation to candidate, e-mail, and phone number). No reference letters should be submitted.

The application with attachments must be delivered in our electronic recruiting system.

Please note that all documents should be in English. Interviews will be part of the appointment process.

Formal regulations

Please see the guidelines and regulations for appointments to Postdoctoral fellowships at the University of Oslo.

No one can be appointed for more than one Postdoctoral Fellow period at the University of Oslo.

According to the Norwegian Freedom of Information Act (Offentleglova) information about the applicant may be included in the public applicant list, also in cases where the applicant has requested non-disclosure.

Inclusion and diversity are a strength. The University of Oslo has a personnel policy objective of achieving a balanced gender composition. Furthermore, we want employees with diverse professional expertise, life experience and perspectives.

If there are qualified applicants with disabilities, employment gaps or immigrant background, we will invite at least one applicant from each of these categories to an interview.

Contact information

Questions regarding the recruiting system and the application procedure: HR-adviser Thomas Brånå: [email protected]

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