Postdoctoral Fellowship in Fungal Evolution and Population Genomics, University of Copenhagen

The Department of Biology in the Faculty of Science at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark is offering a Postdoctoral fellowship in fungus evolution and population genomics, commencing 15 January 2020 or as soon as possible thereafter. The University of Copenhagen provides a top-notch research environment and the city of Copenhagen provides a vibrant cultural scene.   


Scientific environment 

The fellowship will be part of a research project financed by an ERC Starting Grant based in the thriving research environment of the Centre for Social Evolution ( (embedded within the Section of Ecology and Evolution), and will involve fieldwork in the Panamanian tropical rainforests at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute ( The successful applicant will have experience and interest in evolution, fungal ecology, fungus culturing methods, field work, and molecular techniques. 


Project Description 

The project will focus on the remarkable lineage of attine ants that have domesticated fungal cultivars over millions of years. These ants harvest a variety of substrates from the environment, cutting fresh vegetation, or scavenging decaying organic matter, and then convert this material into nutritional compost to farm co-evolved fungal crops as food. The postdoc will explore the fungal traits that make crop production possible, and that have facilitated farming success in diverse habitats and across climatic fluctuations spanning millions of years. Projects will combine ecological fieldwork in Panamanian rainforests, population genomics analyses, and integrative in vitro studies of fungus cultivar performance to resolve the physiological mechanisms enabling farming resiliency. 


Job description 

The position is available for a 2-year period and your key tasks as a Postdoctoral Fellow at SCIENCE are: 

  • To manage and carry out your research project
  • To oversee student research related to your project
  • Write scientific articles and grant proposals
  • To travel to and perform field research in tropical rainforests 
  • Disseminate your research

Formal Qualifications

  • PhD in Biology with good results (including publications and conference presentations)
  • An interest in fieldwork, fungal evolution, physiology, and ecology
  • Experience with sequencing and molecular analyses
  • Experience isolating and in vitro culturing fungus is a plus
  • Creativity and ability to be both team-oriented and independent
  • A proven record of excellent English speaking, reading and writing skills. 
  • Embrace of an international research environment and interdisciplinary research

Terms of employment  

The position is covered by the Memorandum on Job Structure for Academic Staff.  

Terms of appointment and payment accord to the agreement between the Ministry of Finance and The Danish Confederation of Professional Associations on Academics in the State.  

The starting salary is currently at a minimum DKK 426.625 including annual supplement (+ pension up to DKK 72.952). Negotiation for salary supplement is possible.


Application Procedure 

The application, in English, must be submitted electronically by clicking APPLY NOW below.  


How to apply 

Applications must include:

  • Cover letter
  • Statement of research interests and reasons for applying to this position (max 2 pages)
  • Curriculum vitae (including a list of publications)
  • Copies of relevant diplomas and transcripts (PhD, Master and Bachelor)[JZS1] 
  • Separate reprints of 3 particularly relevant papers
  • Full contact details (name, address, e-mail, telephone numbers and addresses of 2-3 professional referees).  

In addition to the fulfilment of the above-mentioned qualifications, the main criterion for selection will be the research potential of the applicant, the match with the project and good interpersonal skills. Additionally, my research group and the University of Copenhagen strive to reflect the diversity of society and welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background.  


The deadline for applications is 1 October  2019, 23:59 GMT +1.   


After the expiry of the deadline for applications, the authorized recruitment manager selects applicants for assessment on the advice of the Interview Committee. Afterwards, an assessment committee will be appointed to evaluate the selected applications. The applicants will be notified of the composition of the committee and the final selection of a successful candidate will be made by the Head of Department, based on the recommendations of the assessment committee and the interview committee.  


The main criterion for selection will be the research potential of the applicant and the previously mentioned skills. You can read more about the recruitment process at 



For specific information about the Postdoctoral Fellowship please refer to the website of Assistant Professor Jonathan Shik (, or contact him at, Direct Phone: +45 31152140.  


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Ansøgningsfrist: 01-10-2019
Ansættelsesdato: 15-01-2020
Arbejdstid: Fuldtid
Afdeling/Sted: Department of Biology

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