Postdoctoral Research Fellow (x2)

Country: United Kingdom;

Deadline: 25.02.2019



The University of Nottingham is inviting applications for two Postdoctoral Fellows to join our Future Food Beacon of Excellence. Successful fellows will join a new multidisciplinary palaeobenchmarking team focusing on past, present and projected agricultural systems in centres of agricultural origins including Latin America, the Fertile Crescent, and East Asia. The focus of this team is on crop production and climate change. Fellows’ work will focus on improving our understanding of agricultural resilience, looking to maximise the lessons we can learn from over 11,000 years of agricultural successes and failures in order to plan for the agriculture of the future

Post 1: You will work as part of a team to establish a Multiscale Plant Resilience Trait Discovery Pipeline, which will integrate multi-scale phenotyping data with environmental factors to characterise complex interactions underlying plant stress responses. The focus will be on combined root and shoot phenotyping of rice plants undergoing heat stress using diverse rice germplasm collections from Vietnam, China and Africa. Data will be integrated across a range of organs and scales to determine and characterise optimal phenotypes for crop resilience at a whole plant level.

The data will be linked via GWAS to marker data to provide a pipeline for stress resilience trait discovery and trait characterisation.

Post 2: You will work as part of a team to establish an ancient DNA genomics lab. Areas of project development could include analysis of aDNA associated with different environmental conditions and crop diversities; past crop pathogen profiling; herbarium sample aDNA processing for demographic analysis following recent environmental and human-associated shifts; environmental adaptation of wild plant species; crop resilience traits from contemporaneous DNA from soil samples.

Both successful candidates will have the opportunity to use their initiative and creativity to identify areas for research, develop research methods and extend their research portfolio.

The University of Nottingham, Future Food Beacon of Excellence is funding these posts. More information on the Beacon can be found here:

The Palaeobenchmarking Resilient Agricultural Systems project represents a key component of this work, bringing together academics from across disciplines to explore more than 11,000 years of data to model future system scenarios and utilise natural variation to identify and exploit novel traits for crop improvement.  

These are fixed term 3-year posts, available immediately

Informal enquiries may be addressed to Professor Zoe Wilson: telephone 0115 9513235 or email; or Associate Professor Levi Yant: Please note that applications sent directly to these email addresses will not be accepted.