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UiB, Postdoctoral Researcher in Climate Impacts on the Biodiversity and Functioning of Alpine Soil Ecosystems

Norway, University of Bergen (UiB)

The University of Bergen invites applications for a Postdoctoral Research fellow position within microbial ecology/global change ecology. The position is for a fixed term of three years and is associated with the research project “FUNDER – Direct and indirect climate impacts on the biodiversity and FUNctioning of the UNDERground ecosystem” funded by the Research Council of Norway, Department of Biological Sciences (BIO), Norway – Jan 2022

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General Info

Position: Postdoctoral Researcher
No. of Positions: 1
Research Field:
Deadline to Apply: Expired
Joining Date: ASAP
Contract Period: 3 Years
Salary: 553,500 NOK/Year

Department of Biological Sciences (BIO)
University of Bergen
University of Bergen (UiB)

Bergen, ,

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Qualification Details

Qualifications and personal qualities:

  • applicants must hold a Norwegian PhD or an equivalent degree within microbial ecology, fungal ecology, or a related field, or must have submitted his/her doctoral thesis for assessment prior to the application deadline. It is a condition of employment that the PhD has been awarded before appointment.
  • the successful candidate must have knowledge and research experience with DNA-based assessments of microbial/fungal communities (DNA-metabarcoding), including know-how and experience in relevant bioinformatics approaches.
  • knowledge in community ecology or global change ecology, and relevant statistical and analytical methods, including skills in R, and data management skills will be considered positive.
  • applicants must be able to work independently and in a structured manner and have the ability to cooperate with others.
  • applicants must have excellent skills in oral and written English.

Personal and relational qualities will be emphasized. Research experience, ambitions and potential will also count when evaluating the candidates.

Responsibilities/Job Description

About the project/work tasks:

Climate change alters plant and soil communities, as well as processes and interactions in the plant-soil food web. These changes pose threats to biodiversity and key ecosystem functions such as productivity and carbon and nutrient cycling. To predict how biodiversity and ecosystem functioning will respond to future climatic changes, and how these changes will feed back to the climate system, profound knowledge of climate impacts on biodiversity and underlying ecological responses, processes, mechanisms, and interactions in the plant-soil food web is needed.FUNDER will assess and disentangle the direct effects of climate from the indirect effects, mediated through biotic interactions, on the diversity and whole-ecosystem functioning of the plant−soil food web. To achieve this, we use a powerful macroecological experimental approach to quantify the impacts of vegetation diversity on interactions and ecosystem functioning across factorial broad-scale temperature and precipitation gradients. This will allow us to gain a holistic understanding of ecosystem responses and feedbacks to climate change, including non-additive effects, context-dependencies across landscapes, compensatory effects and climate mismatches that may lead to disruption of biotic interactions.The project involves collaborations between ecologists, ecosystem biologists and modelers who will collaboratively synthesise results to enable process-level understanding and assessment of larger-scale and longer-term consequences including feedbacks to the climate system.The postdoc will focus on the role of soil microorganisms (mainly bacteria and fungi) in ecosystem responses and feedbacks to climate. The work will be based around data from climate and plant functional group manipulations in a distributed field experiment, conducted with other project participants. The hired candidate will:

  • obtain soil samples from the core FUNDER experiment and analyse the microbial communities (bacteria and fungi) using high throughput DNA sequencing (DNA metabarcoding)
  • analyse the abundance of the microbial communities using quantitative methods (e.g. ergosterol measurements)
  • investigate the production of microbial (fungal) biomass using e.g. in-growth mesh bags and turnover, using litter/necromass bags
  • in collaboration with other project participants, measure other below-ground ecosystem functional parameters, e.g. based on belowground plant parts and soil samples
  • develop his/her own research questions and hypotheses related to these experiments and measurements
  • collaborate with plant ecologists and climate scientists over synthesis and upscaling
  • analyse data and write and publish research papers

This is a collaborative project between the University of Bergen and the University of Oslo, where the fungal work will be led and conducted at University of Oslo. The postdoctoral research fellow will be working closely with both institutions, including extended works stays in Oslo for lab and analytical work.

How to Apply?

Online Application through "Apply Now" Button from this page

Reference Number: -
(If any, use it in the necessary place)

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Documents Required

Your application must include:

  • a brief account of the applicant's research interests and motivation for applying for the position.
  • a research statement (maximum 2 pages) describing your research interests and plans, indicating relevance of the advertised position.
  • the names and contact information for two referees. One of these should be the main advisor from the PhD programme.
  • CV
  • transcripts and diplomas. If you have not yet completed your PhD degree, please submit a statement from your institution confirming the expected date of award of your degree. Your PhD degree must be documented with transcripts and/or diploma, alternatively a confirmation from your institution on completed degree within appointment.
  • relevant certificates/references
  • list of any works of a scientific nature (publication list)
  • publications (as applicable)

The application and appendices with certified translations into English or a Scandinavian language must be uploaded at Jobbnorge

About the Position

The postdoctoral position is a fixed term position with the primary objective of qualifying the appointee for work in top academic positions. If the appointee lacks teaching experience, or other relevant qualifications, the employment period may be increased to 3 years and 6 months.

Teaching and other duties will in such cases be added to the position. (The department will fund the extra months) The position may be extended by up to one year (up to a maximum 4 years in total) if the appointee is granted externally financed research stays abroad. Individuals may not be hired for more than one fixed-term period as a postdoctoral research fellow at the same institution.

For postdoctoral research fellow positions associated with externally financed projects, the completion of the project proposal for the qualifying work, as well as a progress plan, will be developed in cooperation with the supervisor and head of department. It is a requirement that the project is completed in the course of the period of employment.

There are seven departments and several centres at Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences. Read more about the faculty and departments.

About the Employer:


  • a good and professionally stimulating working environment
  • salary at pay grade 61 (code 1352/pay range 24, alternative 5) according to the state salary scale upon appointment. This constitutes a gross annual salary of NOK 553 500. Further promotions are made according to length of service. For particularly highly qualified applicants, a higher salary may be considered.
  • enrolment in the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund
  • good welfare benefits

General Information

The state labour force shall reflect the diversity of Norwegian society to the greatest extent possible. Age and gender balance among employees is therefore a goal. People with immigrant backgrounds and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply for the position.

Upon the expiry of the closing date for applications, an evaluation committee will be appointed. As an applicant, you have right to access to the committee's description of your formal and professional qualifications. If you wish to take advantage of this right of access, please contact the executive officer in charge after receiving information about the appointment of the evaluation committee.

The University of Bergen applies the principle of public access to information when recruiting staff for academic positions.

Information about applicants may be made public even if the applicant has asked not to be named on the list of persons who have applied. The applicant must be notified if the request to be omitted is not met.

Further information about our employment process can be found here.

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Contact details

Detailed information about the position can be obtained by contacting: Professor Vigdis Vandvik, Department of Biological Sciences, telephone: +47 4730 1794.

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