Postdoctoral Fellowship in Population Genomics

University of Copenhagen


Postdoctoral Fellowship in Population Genomics

A two-year postdoctoral fellowship is available at the Section for Computational and RNA Biology, Department of Biology, University of Copenhagen. The position will be available from 1 January 2019 or as soon as possible thereafter. The specific project involves analyzing population genomic samples of the musk ox (focus species) and the African buffalo. However, the applicant is expected to collaborate on other projects as well as teaching  


The project is a central part of “How species manage to persist on the edge of extinction”, which is a project funded by the Independent Research Fund Denmark. The project focuses on genomic dynamics and genetic load in species that have been through extreme bottlenecks and lost a significant part of their genetic diversity. This has happened to the muskox in East Greenland, without any signs of inbreeding depression. In the project, we will use comparative population genomics to assess loss of genetic diversity, accumulation of harmful genetic variants and inbreeding in species that experience extreme genetic drift. For comparison, we use a non-bottlenecked species, the African buffalo as a reference. 


Key publications relevant for the project

  • Moodley et al. 2017, Extinctions, genetic erosion and conservation options for the black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis). Sci Rep: 2017, 7; 41417

  • Pedersen et al. 2017, The effect of an extreme and prolonged population bottleneck on patterns of deleterious variation: Insights from the Greenlandic Inuit. Genetics: 2017, 205(2); 787-801

  • Der Sarkissian et al. 2015 Evolutionary genomics and conservation of the endangered Przewalski's horse.  Curr. Biol.: 2015, 25(19);2577-83. 

  • Xue et al. 2015, Mountain gorilla genomes reveal the impact of long-term population decline and inbreeding. Science: 2015, 348(6231);242-245

  • Moltke et al 2015. Uncovering the genetic history of the present-day Greenlandic population. Am. J. Hum. Genet.: 2015, 96(1);54-69

  • Allentoft et al. 2014 Extinct New Zealand megafauna were not in decline before human colonization. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A.: 2014, 111(13); 4922-7 


Research environments  

The position is in the Population and Statistical Genetics Group at the Section for Computational and RNA Biology. The project is run by Hans R. Siegismund. However,  associate professors Anders Albrechtsen and assistant professor Rasmus Heller from the same group will participate in the project. 


The Population and Statistical Genetics group is working in population genomics, applied statistical and computational approaches for analysis of large scale genomic data.  For more information, see PSGG is a highly dynamic research environment with a world-leading record in scientific publication, an international scope and an informal working environment. The group is divided into independent research groups focusing on wildlife genomics and human and medical genomics. 



The postdoc will be expected to take a leading role in the project, participating both in the population genomic analysis of sequencing data as well as in the interpretation and communication of the project outcome. Some flexibility in the tasks is possible depending on the skills and interests of the candidate.  


To be considered, applicants must:  

  • Have a PhD in population genetics/genomics, bioinformatics or a similar field

  • Have experience in working with next generation DNA sequencing data

  • Be experienced with handling of large genetic data

  • Have published high-quality international peer-reviewed articles 

  • The working language is English, thus good English speaking, reading and writing skills are required.  

For further information please contact Hans R. Siegismund ( 


Salary and terms of employment  

The successful applicant will be hired as postdoctoral fellow for a 2-year period.  


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 up to DKK 424,526 including annual supplement (+ pension up to DKK 72,594). Negotiation for salary supplement is possible.  


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


The deadline for applications is 21 October 2018, 23:59 GMT +2. 


Please include    

  • Cover letter (half to one page)

  • Curriculum vita

  • Diplomas (Master and PhD degree or equivalent)

  • Description of current research

  • Complete publication list

  • Contact details of two people for references  

After the expiry of the deadline for applications, the authorized recruitment manager selects applicants for assessment on the advice of the Interview Committee.    

You can read about the recruitment process at


University of Copenhagen wish to reflect the diversity of society and welcome applications from all qualified candidates regardless of age, disability, gender, nationality, race, religion or sexual orientation. Appointment will be based on merit alone.  


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 organization – with good working conditions and a collaborative work culture – creates the ideal framework for a successful academic career.  

In your application, please refer to


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