Postdoc in Arctic Microbiology

Ref PAR 2023/81

The University of Gothenburg tackles society’s challenges with diverse knowledge. 56 000 students and 6 600 employees make the university a large and inspiring place to work and study. Strong research and attractive study programmes attract scientists and students from around the world. With new knowledge and new perspectives, the University contributes to a better future.

The Department of Earth Sciences has 75 employees. The department trains natural geographers, geologists and geographers who can fill the increased need for geoscientists in society. Our strong research areas are climatology, biogeochemistry, petrology / geochemistry and applied geoscience. We have bachelor's and master's programs in earth sciences and geography as well as postgraduate education with several earth science specializations.

The Department of Earth Sciences (GEO) is looking for a Postdoc to work within the two nationally funded projects: Disentangling the hidden methane consumption in a warmer Arctic (VR), and Will increased precipitation reduce methane consumption in a future Arctic (FORMAS)?

Description

As a response to a warmer climate, Arctic vegetation is growing taller, leading to higher evapotranspiration and potentially dryer surface soils. This may increase methane consumption rates in the region. Climate warming will however also increase precipitation, leading to rain over snow dominance, severely affecting soil conditions. To better understand methane dynamics, in-situ data on the largely ignored, but widespread, process of microbial methane consumption and its responses to future precipitation patterns, climate and vegetation shifts is needed. These processes are keys to understanding climate feedback mechanisms from the Arctic region.

Methanotrophs, bacteria specialized in methane oxidation, thrive in both dry and wet ecosystems, and are primarily regulated by oxygen availability (strongly influenced by soil moisture). These methanotrophs can not only reduce wetland emissions but also consume atmospheric methane, possibly balancing the Arctic methene budget.

With this Postdoc, we will investigate the impact of temperature, precipitation, and vegetation changes on methane consumption rates as well as the microbial communities at several Arctic sites, using the network of the International Tundra Experiment (ITEX). The project includes methane measurements, soil/vegetation analysis, microbial extractions, sequencing, and community analysis. Fieldwork at several remote Arctic locations is scheduled as well as international collaboration leading to exchange stays abroad. The Postdoc is expected to contribute to all steps in the scientific process.

Qualifications

To be appointed under a postdoctoral agreement, the applicant is required to have completed a doctoral degree, or a foreign degree equivalent to a doctoral degree, at the start of contract.

We are looking for a person with interest in Arctic methane issues with documented skills in microbial process including DNA/RNA extraction, sample preparation, sequencing and metagenomic analysis. The successful candidate should also be familiar with chamber-based flux measurements, methane dynamic processes and decent experience in Arctic field condition. The successful candidates PhD degree should be in microbiology, ecology, biogeochemistry, or another relevant field.

The position requires a hard driven, independent person with great accuracy. You who are applying also need to have a good ability for teamwork, have a problem-solving attitude and handles longer periods of fieldwork in remote areas.

Employment

The position as Postdoc is three years full-time, starting in the spring of 2023.

Contact information for the employment

Dr. Mats Björkman, 0730-581145, mats.bjorkman@gu.se  

Union

Trade union representatives at the University of Gothenburg can be found here: https://www.gu.se/om-universitetet/jobba-hos-oss/hjalp-for-sokande

To apply

To apply for employment at the University of Gothenburg, you must register an account in our recruitment system. You apply for the employment via Gothenburg University's recruitment portal by clicking on the "Apply" button. As an applicant, you are responsible for ensuring that the application is complete in accordance to the advertisement and that it is received by the University by the application deadline.

The application, written in English, should include:

  • A one pages description of why you are interested in and suitable for this position
  • A 4 pages CV including publication list, highlighting relevant publication with a short motivation of what you have contributed with.
  • A copy of doctoral degree certificate, or in case of not yet finished doctoral degree, documentation that clarifies when the doctor degree is expected to be obtained.
  • Copies of other diplomas.
  • List of completed academic courses and grades.
  • Copy of PhD-thesis or closed to finished PhD thesis.
  • Names and contact information of three reference persons (including PhD supervisor).

Application should be submited by: 2023-02-15

The University works actively to achieve a working environment with equal conditions, and values the qualities that diversity brings to its operations.

Salaries are set individually at the University.

In accordance with the National Archives of Sweden’s regulations, the University must archive application documents for two years after the appointment is filled. If you request that your documents are returned, they will be returned to you once the two years have passed. Otherwise, they will be destroyed.

In connection to this recruitment, we have already decided which recruitment channels we should use. We therefore decline further contact with vendors, recruitment and staffing companies.