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(Joint) postdoctoral researcher for plant-microbiome interactions

Faculty of Science – Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences

(Joint) postdoctoral researcher for plant-microbiome interactions
Publication date 13 October 2020
Closing date 15 November 2020
Level of education PhD
Hours 38 hours per week
Salary indication €2,790 to €4,402 gross per month
Vacancy number 20-605

Plant roots house one of the most diverse, yet vastly neglected, microbial communities on Earth. The aim of the Gravitation program, MICROP, is to harness the genomic potential of root microbes as a new platform for improved stress resilience of future crops and sustainable food production.

The research program of MICROP will be carried out at the UVA, WUR, VU, UU and NIOO and will have a large data analysis component in addition to the biological wet work. A team of data scientists – consisting of dr B.E. Dutilh (UU), dr M. Medema (WUR), prof. F. van Eeuwijk (WUR) and prof. A.K. Smilde (UvA) and two postdoctoral researchers - will be responsible for the data analysis component in close collaboration with the biologists. They will assist PhDs and postdocs at the localities and will also perform their own research. One of the dedicated postdocs will be a joined position at the UU (dr Bas Dutilh) and at the WUR (dr Marnix Medema). The advertised position is for a joint postdoc of the UvA in the group of prof. Age Smilde and at the WUR in the group of prof. Fred van Eeuwijk. The postdoctoral researcher will work on both locations using a practical time-schedule.

What are you going to do?

You will:

  • advice local PhD’s on statistical and modeling issues;
  • perform research on methods for integrating plant-microbiome omics data;
  • develop methods for statistical modeling of microbiome and related omics data to discover new mechanisms of plant-microbiome interactions;
  • perform genome-wide association studies;
  • collaborate in the Data Analysis team of MiCROP.

What do we require?

  • A PhD in a quantitative science and experience with stochastic modelling (mathematics, statistics, bioinformatics, chemometrics, machine learning, data science);
  • a good knowledge of modern data analysis methods like linear mixed models, multivariate data analysis, Bayesian analysis, high-dimensional data analysis, statistical learning, graphical models;
  • a good understanding of biological systems and genetics;
  • good communication skills, both verbally as well as written;
  • the willingness to collaborate with a variety of researchers with a diverse background.

Our offer

A temporary contract for 38 hours per week, preferably starting at 1 January 2021 for the duration of 12 months. An extension for 3 years subsequently follows if we assess your performance positive.

The salary, depending on relevant work experience before the beginning of the employment contract, will be €2,790 to €4,402 (scale 10) gross per month, based on a full-time contract of 38 hours a week. This is exclusive 8 % holiday allowance and 8,3% end-of-year bonus. A favourable tax agreement, the ‘30% ruling’, may apply to non-Dutch applicants. The Collective Labour Agreement of Dutch Universities is applicable.

Are you curious about our extensive package of secondary employment benefits like our excellent opportunities for study and development? Take a look here.


Do you have questions about this vacancy? Or do you want to know more about our organisation? Please contact:

About the Faculty of Science and the Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences

The Faculty of Science has a student body of around 7,000, as well as 1,600 members of staff working in education, research or support services. Researchers and students at the Faculty of Science are fascinated by every aspect of how the world works, be it elementary particles, the birth of the universe or the functioning of the brain.

The Swammerdam Institute for Life Sciences (SILS) is one of the largest institutes of the Faculty of Science of the University of Amsterdam (UvA). The institute comprises biological disciplines including molecular and cell biology, microbiology, plant science, physiology and neurobiology, supported by modern enabling technologies for the life sciences. We have four underpinning technologies that focus on mass spectrometry, genomics and transcriptomics, advanced data analysis and advanced microscopy. Knowledge from adjacent fields of science, in particular biochemistry, biophysics, medicine, bioinformatics, statistics and information technology make SILS a multidisciplinary research institute with a systems biology approach to the life sciences

Job application

The UvA is an equal-opportunity employer. We prioritise diversity and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for everyone. We value a spirit of enquiry and perseverance, provide the space to keep asking questions, and promote a culture of curiosity and creativity.

Do you recognize yourself in the job profile? Then we look forward to receiving your application by 15 November 2020. You can apply online by using the link below.

Applications in .pdf should include:

  • a motivation letter and CV, including a list of publications;
  • contact details for two references.

Please mention the months (not just years) in your CV when referring to your education and work experience.

We will invite potential candidates for interviews in November/December 2020.

No agencies please