Postdoctoral Researcher | Paleoecology or Sedimentary Geology

  • Position: Postdoctoral Researcher in Paleoecology or Sedimentary Geology
  • Promoter: University of Helsinki
  • Qualifications: PhD in a relevant subject area (Geology, Paleontology, Biology, Mathematics, Computer Science, Statistics, Bioinformatics, Geoinformatics)
  • Location: Helsinki, Finland
  • Application Deadline: the position is available until 23th July 2017
  • Apply: here
Link: Click here to access the full text of the offer and apply

Offer full description:


The University of Helsinki, founded in 1640, is one of the world’s leading universities for multidisciplinary research. The university has an international academic community of 40,000 students and staff members. It operates on four campuses in Helsinki and at 17 other locations.

The Finnish Museum of Natural History is an independent research institution functioning under the University of Helsinki. It is also one of the three central national museums in Finland and responsible for the national collections in its field. The collections, which include botanical, zoological, geological and paleontological specimens from all over the world, serve research in the fields of biology and geology as well as educational purposes.

The Finnish Museum of Natural History, at the University of Helsinki, invites applications for a three year


Project description: The global biodiversity has changed dramatically during the past 550 million years of earth history with pronounced extinction events and times of spectacular diversifications. One hypothetical biotic driving mechanism of long-term change is ecological engineering (EE). In our project we will test predictions based on EE hypothesis by the example of the marine carbonate platforms of the early Paleozoic era (541–444 m.y.a.). During this time carbonate sediments globally expanded in neritic marine environments and at the same time marine organisms diversified rapidly. Because these carbonate platforms were built almost exclusively by benthic organisms we hypothesize that the development of carbonate platforms is an example of EE and that the biodiversification is partly causally linked with biologically driven habitat diversification. In a combined effort of an international team of geologists, ecologists, and paleontologists we will test with statistical, geochemical and stratigraphical methods if the early Paleozoic diversification is linked with coeval changes in marine benthic habitats.

The successful candidate will join an actively growing BioGeoScience Community at the University of Helsinki and will be part of the scientific community at both the Finnish Museum of Natural History and at the Department of Geosciences and Geography at the University of Helsinki. The successful candidate will also likely collaborate with Seth Finnegan (University of California, Berkeley), Lee Hsiang Liow (University of Oslo), and Melanie Hopkins (American Museum of Natural History).

We are seeking a highly motivated researcher with strong quantitative skills to work on one of the following themes:
• Analytical paleontology, macroecology, community ecology, and the statistical tools in paleobiological research
• Carbonate sedimentology, carbonate sequence stratigraphy, basin analysis

The ideal candidate will have extensive experience either in paleobiological research or in carbonate sedimentology. However, as our research is cross-disciplinary it is possible to contribute coming from several different fields. Thus, we welcome applications from exceptional candidates, with a quantitative background, from other fields. However, it is essential to have a genuine interest in the interplay of global change in climate, sea-level and biodiversity. It is also important for the candidate to have strong programming skills and experience in working with large data sets.

Knowledge, skills and experience required: E = Essential, D = Desirable
• Genuine interest in the interplay of global change in climate, sea-level and biodiversity (E)
• PhD in a relevant subject area (Geology, Paleontology, Biology, Mathematics, Computer Science, Statistics, Bioinformatics, Geoinformatics) (E)
• Experience in formulating statistical models and applying them to real data (D)
• Full working proficiency in a scripting language (e.g. Python, R, Perl) (E)
• Ability to work independently, organise workload, and communicate ideas/results (E)
• Strong publishing record (E)
• Knowledge of Paleozoic fauna and stratigraphy (D)

Please submit your application as a single pdf file which includes:
• CV and list of publications
• contact details of two references (e.g. MSc/PhD thesis supervisors)
• a cover letter with a description of your research interests

The postdoctoral researcher will be employed on a full-time, fixed term, three-year contract with a four-month probation. The salary will be based on level 5 of the demands level chart for teaching and research personnel in the salary system of Finnish universities. In addition, the appointee will be paid a salary component based on personal performance with the overall salary amounting to approximately 3 000-3 500 €/month (gross). All standard pension benefits and occupational health care are provided for university employees.

To apply, please submit your application using the University of Helsinki electronic recruitment system by clicking on Apply for job. Internal applicants (i.e. current employees of the University of Helsinki) must submit their applications through the SAP HR portal. Apply at latest on 23th of July 2017. The start date is September 1, 2017 or negotiable soon thereafter.

For more information, please contact Björn Kröger (bjorn.kroger(at)

Apply at latest 23.07.2017


Sunday, July 23, 2017

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Image Credit: University of Helsinki

Lurdes Fonseca

Assistant Professor and Researcher at University of Lisbon
Sociologist (PhD), Paleontologist (Researcher in Micropaleontology), Majors in Sociology and Biology, Minor in Geology. Main interests in Paleontology: Microfossils, Molecular fossils, Paleobiology and Paleoecology. (read more about me)