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Three multidisciplinary postdoctoral scholarships (2 years)

Umeå University (KBC)
Umeå, Sweden
350 000 SEK/year
Closing date
27 Aug 2024

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Computing, Environmental Science, Life Science, Mathematics, Physics
Job Type
Employment - Hours
Full time
Fixed term

Job Details

The Integrated Science Lab (IceLab), jointly with several departments at Umeå University and the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU), offer three postdoctoral scholarships affiliated with one of six possible multidisciplinary projects.

The ideal postdocs will have expertise in some of the following areas: data analytics, computational modeling, programming, mathematics, physics, molecular biology, microbiology, ecology, systems biology, plant physiology, botany, archeology, physics or an interest in gaining experience in these areas. Further, postdocs should have a deep interest in scientific collaboration between researchers using theoretical and empirical approaches. 

The IceLab Multidisciplinary Postdoctoral Program funded by Kempestiftelserna

The under-explored terrain between traditional disciplines is full of fascinating and impactful research questions. At IceLab, we promote and facilitate transdisciplinary collaborations – with a focus on cutting-edge research that integrates theoretical, computational, and empirical approaches.

We will welcome you to IceLab with genuine support by creative researchers working on a panel of interdisciplinary problems. You will participate in both professionally and personally rewarding and entertaining activities aimed at training a new kind of researcher. A multidisciplinary team of researchers with complementary expertise will supervise each postdoc.

The two-year postdoc fellowships are financed by Kempestiftelserna and are part of the IceLab Multidisciplinary Postdoctoral Program. A fellowship amounts to 700 000 SEK over two years. The scholarships are tax-free. Application deadline September 20, 2024. Start winter/spring 2025 (exact start date according to agreement).

Formal qualifications

To qualify as a postdoctoral scholarship holder, the postdoctoral fellow is required to have completed a doctoral degree or a foreign degree deemed equivalent to a doctoral degree. This qualification requirement must be fulfilled no later than at the time of the decision about scholarship recipient.

Priority should be given to candidates who completed their doctoral degree, according to what is stipulated in the paragraph above, no later than three years prior to the decision date for the scholarship recipient. If there are special reasons, candidates who completed their doctoral degree prior to that may also be eligible. Special reasons include absence due to illness, parental leave, appointments of trust in trade union organizations, military service, or similar circumstances, as well as clinical practice or other forms of appointment/assignment relevant to the subject area.

Candidates should have experience in some of the following areas: data analytics, computational modeling, programming, mathematics, physics, molecular biology, microbiology, ecology, systems biology, plant physiology, physics, archeology, botany or an interest in gaining experience in these areas. Personal qualities such as collaboration, communication, strong drive and motivation, critical thinking abilities, creativity and analytical skills are essential. You should be able to take on the research independently and as part of a team. Good knowledge of oral and written English is required.

Six Possible Projects

Find detailed project descriptions, specific qualifications, and contact information for each project here:

A. Real Options for Climate, Forestry and Fisheries Click to Read Full Description

Many problems related to decision-making in managing biological and environmental resources feature large uncertainties and a strong element of irreversibility. Climate change and climate policy, forestry, and fishery management are prime examples. Real option theory is arguably the best theoretical framework to investigate such problems, and in this project, we will look in particular at incentive structures provided through contracts, quota markets, policies, and strategic competition, as well as the impact of model ambiguity. The modeling involves stochastic optimal control, option pricing, and natural resource theory.

Specific Qualifications for Project A
To qualify for the fellowship, the candidate should have a PhD degree, or a foreign degree that is deemed equivalent in Mathematics, Economics, Finance, Biology or Theoretical Physics. The ideal candidate has a combination of skills from the theory of stochastic processes, financial mathematics, investment theory, forestry, ecology or fisheries management.

B. Impact of Environmental Stress on Reef-Forming Marine Algae Click to Read Full Description

Photosynthesis supports almost all of ocean life, so the underwater light environment is tremendously important, but human activity and climate change are changing it. This project will investigate the combined impact of marine heatwaves and coastal darkening in reef-forming algae, using ultrafast and single-cell spectroscopies. This will provide important new insight into environmental resilience, which can subsequently be used to inform marine conservation and ocean sustainability strategies.

Specific Qualifications for Project B
To qualify for the fellowship, the candidate should have a PhD degree, or a foreign degree that is deemed equivalent, in plant / algal physiology or experimental physics. The ideal candidate has skills in photophysiology, optical spectroscopies (including frequency and time domain absorption, fluorescence and/or Raman spectroscopies), and / or imaging or atomic force microscopy. Importantly, the candidate will be interested in pursuing research that addresses climate change and sustainable development challenges at the intersection of physics and (plant) biology.

C. Mining the world’s largest historical eDNA dataset for eco-system interdependencies, causality, and human impacts Click to Read Full Description

Mining the world’s largest historical environmental DNA dataset covering thousands of species from all domains of life. The dataset we have recently produced offers a unique opportunity to study long-term ecological changes and the intricate web of species relationships in a boreal ecosystem, allowing us to investigate ecosystem interdependencies, causality, and human impacts. By employing data analysis techniques, particularly empirical dynamical systems modeling, we aim to uncover previously unknown relationships between species and understand how these interactions are influenced by climate change.

Specific Qualifications for Project C
We are particularly looking for candidates who are motivated to carry out research in data-driven ecosystem science and possess skills in mathematics, data science, and computer programming, with a strong interest in ecology.

D. Outer membrane tethering in Gram-negative bacteria Click to Read Full Description

This project aims at identifying the mechanisms by which Gram-negative bacteria connect the outer membrane and the peptidoglycan. A major goal is to further understand how these connections provide structural support and protect the cell from environmental stress. Thus, our research program has potential to reveal new species-specific vulnerabilities in the bacterial cell wall. We seek a candidate with a strong background in microbiology, molecular biology and/or biochemistry, and an interest in working in cell wall biology, proteomics and mechanistic modeling of the cell wall.

Specific Qualifications for Project D
To qualify for the fellowship, the candidate should have a PhD degree, or a foreign degree that is deemed equivalent, in one of the following fields: microbiology, molecular biology, biochemistry or systems biology. The ideal candidate has experience in microbiology, molecular biology and/or biochemistry. It is of added value if the candidate postdoc has previous experience with cell wall biology, proteomics, or data analysis skills. If the candidate does not have these skills, they should be open to developing them.

E. Environmental paleomicrobiology: Inferring community composition and function from metabolic fossils Click to Read Full Description

Join us as an IceLab post-doc to work with Eric Libby and Eric Capo on uncovering the evolution of past aquatic microbial communities. Combining metabolic models, molecular ecology, paleogenomics, and bioinformatics, the post-doctoral researcher will improve our understanding of past, present, and future changes in aquatic microbial communities.

Specific Qualifications for Project E
To qualify for the fellowship, the candidate should have a PhD degree, or a foreign degree that is deemed equivalent, in a relevant discipline such as aquatic microbial ecology, molecular biology, applied mathematics, mathematical/computational biology, evolution, etc. We note that since the project is multidisciplinary and can be tailored to the specific expertise of the candidate, we are inclusive of many academic backgrounds that may be appropriate for addressing the topic. The ideal candidate should be motivated to carry out research in data-driven science with a strong interest in ecology. The candidate should also possess skills in analyzing varied molecular data sets via computer programming.

F. Exploring Genetic Legacy: Swedish Pine Forests from Glacial Origins to Modern Diversity Click to Read Full Description

This project aims to integrate genetics, genomics, ancient DNA, history, archeology and botany to study the effects of historical exploitation and management on the genetic diversity of Swedish pine forests, tracing their genetic trajectory since the Last Glacial Maximum. It seeks to provide new insights to guide future forest management practices that protect genetic integrity and ecosystem services.

Specific Qualifications for Project F
To qualify for the fellowship, candidates should possess a PhD degree, or an equivalent foreign degree, in a relevant discipline such as genetics, genomics, ancient DNA, history, archaeology, botany, evolutionary biology, or related fields. Given the multidisciplinary nature of the project, we welcome candidates from various academic backgrounds capable of addressing the project's objectives.

The ideal candidate should demonstrate a strong motivation to engage in interdisciplinary research combining historical and modern data to understand genetic diversity. Candidates should have expertise in analyzing complex genetic and molecular data sets, preferably through advanced computational and bioinformatics skills. An interest in the history of forest management and its ecological impacts is also essential.

A full application should include:

  • A cover letter clearly stating which project or projects you are particularly interested in and summarizing your qualifications, your scientific interests, and your motives for applying (max 2 pages),
  • A curriculum vitae (CV) with publication list,
  • Certified copy of doctoral degree certificate,
  • Certified copies of other diplomas, list of completed academic courses and grades,
  • Copy of doctoral thesis, 
  • Copies of relevant publications,
  • Contact information for at least two reference persons,
  • Other documents that the applicant wishes to claim.

Submit your application as a PDF marked with the reference number FS 2.1.6-1263-24, both in the file name and in the subject field of the email, to The application can be written in English or Swedish. Application deadline is 20 September 2024.

More about us

At Umeå University, everything is nearby. Our cohesive campus environment makes it easy to meet, collaborate and exchange knowledge, which promotes a dynamic and open culture where we rejoice in each other’s successes. If you are interested in knowing about Umeå University as a workplace, read more at:

Umeå University also offers a strong postdoc community with the Umeå Postdoc Society (UPS), which fosters networking among postdocs, organises social and career development events and works towards improving the postdoc experience at the Umeå campus. Check out their website: and do not hesitate to get in contact with them early on!

We look forward to receiving your application!


Umeå University is one of Sweden’s largest institutions of higher education with over 36,000 students and 4,100 faculty and staff. We are characterised by world-leading research in several scientific fields, and a multitude of educations ranked highly in international comparison. Umeå University is also the site of the pioneering discovery of the CRISPR-Cas9 genetic scissors - a revolution in genetic engineering that has been awarded the 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

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Umeå University

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