Doctoral Position in Biology

Lund University Department of Biology


Doctoral student in Biology

Lund University, Faculty of Science, Department of Biology

Lund University was founded in 1666 and is repeatedly ranked among the world’s top 100 universities. The University has 40 000 students and more than 8 000 staff based in Lund, Helsingborg and Malmö. We are united in our efforts to understand, explain and improve our world and the human condition.

The Faculty of Science conducts research and education within Biology, Astronomy, Physics, Geosciences, Chemistry, Mathematics and Environmental Sciences. The Faculty is organized into nine departments, gathered in the northern campus area. The Faculty has approximately 1500 students, 330 PhD students and 700 employees.

Subject description

Whole genomes are being sequenced at an increasing pace across the domains of life, including in the most species rich group of multicellular organisms: the insects. These genomic resources are being harnessed for many purposes including estimating the phylogenetic relationships of taxa. Methods for analysing very large datasets are still being developed, including how to incorporate gene histories into species histories in a biologically meaningful way.

Work duties

We here search for a PhD candidate that will be part of a joint project with Dr Krzysztof Bartoszek at Linköping University funded by ELLIIT Call C, including collaboration with Prof Fredrik Ronquist (Swedish Museum of Natural History). The PhD candidate will use publicly available genomic resources on Lepidoptera (>100 whole genomes and hundreds of transcriptomes) to develop and empirically test new statistical methods to investigate gene and species histories across deep evolutionary time (>100 million years of evolution). A parallel PhD candidate will be hired in Linköping to develop the theoretical and statistical framework for the new methods, and the two PhD candidates will be working closely together. The proposed project is interdisciplinary, and will enable the prospective PhD candidate to acquire a wide range of skills in state-of-the-art phylogenetics, genomics, bioinformatics, as well as experience with theoretical and statistical models. The PhD candidate will accordingly be trained by supervisors with complementary skills and interests. The primary supervisor will be Prof Niklas Wahlberg, with Dr Mikael Pontarp, Dr Jadranka Rota (all three Lund University), and Dr Krzysztof Bartoszek (Linköping University) as co-supervisors.

The main duties of doctoral students are to devote themselves to their research studies which includes participating in research projects and third cycle courses. The work duties can also include teaching and other departmental duties (no more than 20%).

Admission requirements

A person meets the general admission requirements for PhD-studies if he or she:

  • has been awarded a second-cycle qualification (i.e. completion of master’s level studies), or
  • has satisfied the requirements for courses comprising at least 240 credits of which at least 60 credits were awarded in the second cycle, or
  • has acquired substantially equivalent knowledge in some other way in Sweden or abroad.

Additional requirements

In addition to the general mandatory requirements to be accepted for PhD education, the candidate should have:

  • An MSc in Evolutionary biology, Phylogenetics, Genomics, or related area, or alternatively, the candidate may have a degree in Physics, Mathematics or computer science (with an interest in biology).
  • Very good ability for proactive and independent work.
  • Practical experience in bioinformatics and analysis of genomic data.
  • Excellent knowledge of English, both in reading comprehension and writing.

Additional merits

  • Knowledge of interacting ecological, evolutionary and biogeographical processes that underpin phylogenetic community patterns is desirable
  • Experience with mathematical modeling, computation and programming, e.g. in Matlab, Python, Julia, C++, etc.
  • Experience with database management systems.

Assessment criteria

Selection for third-cycle studies is based on the student’s potential to profit from such studies. The assessment of potential is made primarily on the basis of academic results from the first and second cycle. Special attention is paid to the following:

Knowledge and skills relevant to the thesis project and the subject of study. An assessment of ability to work independently and to formulate and tackle research problems. Written and oral communication skills Other experience relevant to the third-cycle studies, e.g. professional experience.

Consideration will also be given to good collaborative skills, drive and independence, and how the applicant, through his or her experience and skills, is deemed to have the abilities necessary for successfully completing the third cycle programme.

Terms of employment

Only those admitted to third cycle studies may be appointed to a doctoral studentship. Third cycle studies at LTH consist of full-time studies for 4 years. A doctoral studentship is a fixed-term employment of a maximum of 5 years (including 20% departmental duties). Doctoral studentships are regulated in the Higher Education Ordinance (1993:100), chapter 5, 1-7 §§.

Instructions on how to apply

Applications should be written in English and be compiled into a PDF-file containing:

  • Cover letter (your background, why are you interested in the position, and in what way the research project corresponds to your interests and educational background, your goals, and start date)
  • Résumé/CV, including a list of publications.
  • A general description of past research and future research interests (no more than three pages).
  • Contact information of at least two references.
  • Copy of the Master's degree certificate or equivalent and grades for the MSc, and BA studies.

Lund University welcomes applicants with diverse backgrounds and experiences. We regard gender equality and diversity as a strength and an asset. We kindly decline all sales and marketing contacts.

To apply, please click the button "Login and apply"

Type of employment Temporary position longer than 6 months
First day of employment 2021-09-01
Salary Monthly salary
Number of positions 1
Working hours 100
City Lund
County Skåne län
Country Sweden
Reference number PA2021/692
Izabella Sec, HR administrator, +46 46 222 79 21
Niklas Wahlberg, Professor, +46 46 222 31 02
Union representative
OFR/ST:Fackförbundet ST:s kansli, 046-222 93 62
SACO:Saco-s-rådet vid Lunds universitet, 046-222 93 64
SEKO: Seko Civil, 046-222 93 66
Published 10.Mar.2021
Last application date 08.May.2021 11:59 PM CET

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