Biologiska institutionen, Naturvetenskapliga fakulteten, Lunds universitet

Lund University was founded in 1666 and is repeatedly ranked among the world’s top universities. The University has around 45 000 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.

Lund University welcomes applicants with diverse backgrounds and experiences. We regard gender equality and diversity as a strength and an asset.

The Department of Biology is the largest department of the Faculty of Science with around 210 employees, 80 doctoral students, and an additional 100 co-workers. Research at the Department of Biology is characterized by cutting-edge fundamental research within a variety of areas, from molecules and protein production to ecological systems, and from genetic code to behavior. We are additionally very active in several areas of applied research. Our premises and infrastructure are modern and include almost everything a biologist might need, from molecular laboratories and electron and confocal microscopes to field stations and wind tunnels.

Project description

Microscopic organisms are widespread and many species have a cosmopolitan distribution. This pattern suggests that microorganisms (such as phytoplankton), in contrast to most larger organisms, have unlimited dispersal. Unlimited dispersal implies high migration rates and gene flow within a species, and consequently no opportunity for populations to differentiate. However, many studies show that phytoplankton populations are genetically highly differentiated. This implies limited gene flow despite high dispersal, posing a dispersal–differentiation paradox. Explanations to this paradox may include the importance of founding individuals (founder effects), and rapid local adaptation in phytoplankton. Within this project we will experimentally test these hypotheses using a model green algal system.


The postdoctoral fellow will be involved in the research on the dispersal-differentation paradox in phytoplankton, utilizing the model species Chlamydomonas. The project encompasses both experimental laboratory studies as well as some field work. The postdoctoral fellow will be responsible for experimental work testing founder effects and local adaptation in Chlamydomonas populations. The work will include algal culturing, PCR, and preparation of RADseq libraries, in the laboratory. Downstream analyses will include bioinformatic analyses, population genetic analyses, as well as writing manuscripts. The postdoctoral fellow is expected to conduct high quality research and to disseminate results in international scientific publications.

The postdoctoral fellow will join the Rengefors lab at the Aquatic Ecology unit of the Department of Biology at Lund University. In this group we work with evolutionary and ecological questions related to phytoplankton, including harmful algal blooms. We utilize various molecular and genomic methods, ecophysiological studies, as well as field studies. The successful candidate will have the opportunity to work in a dynamic and international environment, listen to and meet with invited seminar speakers from around the world, as well as have the possibility to supervise Bachelor or Master students. 


Appointment to a post-doctoral position requires that the applicant has a PhD, or an international degree deemed equivalent to a PhD, within the subject of the position, completed no more than three years before the last date for applications. Under special circumstances, the doctoral degree can have been completed earlier.


The main criteria for evaluation of candidates is scientific skills and the potential to contribute to the research profile of the group.


  • A PhD in limnology, marine ecology, phycology, microbial ecology, evolutionary ecology or similar is required
  • Strong record of publishing in peer reviewed scientific journals
  • Documented experience working with high throughput sequencing data, such as population genomics, transcriptomics, or genomics, is necessary
  • The candidate should be fluent in written and spoken English
  • The candidate should have excellent writing skills
  • Good communication skills, must be able to collaborate in teams, but also be able to work independently.

Desirable skills

  • Experience of culturing microalgae or other microorganisms
  • Experience or knowledge of population genetics is an advantage

Terms of employment

The position is a full-time, fixed-term employment for two years.


Applications must be written in English and should include a cover letter (1 page) outlining suitability for the position and research interests, a copy of your PhD exam, CV, publication list, two recommendation letters, contact information for three references. Upload the application as PDF-files in the recruitment system.

Type of employment Temporary position
Contract type Full time
First day of employment May or as agreed for two years
Salary Monthly salary
Number of positions 1
Full-time equivalent 100
City Lund
County Skåne län
Country Sweden
Reference number PA2019/75
  • Karin Rengefors, Professor, +46 46 222 84 27,
  • My Geborek, Human resources coordinator, +46 46 222 48 53,
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 30.Jan.2019
Last application date 06.Mar.2019 11:59 PM CET

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