Postdoctoral Researcher in Theoretical Population Genetics
Uppsala University Department of Ecology and Genetics

Postdoctoral Researcher in Theoretical Population Genetics


Uppsala University is a comprehensive research-intensive university with a strong international standing. Our mission is to pursue top-quality research and education and to interact constructively with society. Our most important assets are all the individuals whose curiosity and dedication make Uppsala University one of Sweden’s most exciting workplaces. Uppsala University has 46.000 students, 7.300 employees and a turnover of SEK 7.3 billion.

A position as a postdoctoral researcher/fellow in theoretical population genetics is available at the Department of Ecology and Genetics, Evolutionary Biology program.

The Department of Ecology and Genetics is an international environment with staff and students from all over the world. Our research spans from evolutionary ecology and genetics to studies of ecosystems. For more information, see 

Project description: Stochastic models have a strong tradition in population genetics. Diffusion and branching processes are frequently used to describe evolution forward-in-time. At the same time, birth-death processes such as the coalescent are used to track evolution backward-in-time. Duality relationships between forward-in-time and backward-in-time models have been established and analysed. Together, such mathematical treatment has led to a large body of theoretical population genetics and promoted our general understanding of evolution.

Building on concepts of theoretical population genetics, we have formulated a time-dependent Poisson random field model that permits describing allele frequency trajectories in nonstationary populations (doi: 10.1016/j.tpb.2016.06.003). This has, for example, enabled us to formulate an analytical description of the joint allele frequency spectrum of two populations during the process of speciation, and investigate the impact of incomplete lineage sorting on genomic signatures of natural selection.

The project profits from an interdisciplinary collaboration between the Department of Ecology and Genetics and the Department of Mathematics at Uppsala University.

Duties: Several extensions of the basic model of allele frequency evolution are of interest, such as dependence among allele frequency trajectories due to physical linkage and recombination. A relevant body of population genetics models that address recombination exists – the sequential Markovian coalescent, the ancestral recombination graph and diverse branching process models. The Postdoc project will start by investigating possibilities of integrating such models of recombination into the forward-in-time model of allele frequency evolution, which has been formulated by our group. In particular, analytical results on the allele frequency spectrum (AFS) in the presence of physical linkage are of interest. Ultimately, the derivation of such an AFS shall form the basis to analytically investigate the relationship between the recombination rate and measures of natural selection, which is a central question in evolutionary biology.

Qualifications required: For this position, the candidate must hold a PhD degree within mathematics, evolutionary biology, bioinformatics or another relevant field. The Postdoc candidate must have experience in mathematical biology and interest in population genetics. The candidate must be able to express themselves fluently in spoken as well as written English. In addition, the applicant must be able to work independently, have good collaborative skills and be able to communicate (both spoken as well as written). The applicant must have integrity and personal maturity, be able to take initiative and to handle setbacks.

To be eligible the candidate must have a PhD degree, or a foreign degree equivalent to this, completed less than three years before the application deadline. The three year period can be extended due to circumstances such as sick leave, parental leave, duties in labour unions, etc.

Instructions for the application: The application should include 1) a letter of intent describing yourself, your research interests and motivation of why you want to work as a postdoctoral researcher/fellow and why you are suitable for the position, 2) a CV 3) a short description of your education, 4) a copy of your PhD degree, your grades and a copy of your thesis, 5) name and contact information to at least two reference persons (e-mail address and phone no.), 6) relevant publications. The application should be written in English.

Qualifications desired: Previous experience with stochastic models is beneficial, but not a must.

Salary: Individual salary.

Starting date: 2020-09-01, or as agreed.

Type of employment: Temporary full-time position for 24 months, according to central collective agreement.

Scope of employment: 100%.

For further information about the position please contact: Dr. Carina Farah Mugal,, +46 18 471 64 66.

Please submit your application by 30 April 2020, UFV-PA 2020/915.

Are you considering moving to Sweden to work at Uppsala University? If so, you will find a lot of information about working and living in Sweden at You are also welcome to contact International Faculty and Staff Services at

Please do not send offers of recruitment or advertising services.

Submit your application through Uppsala University´s recruitment system.

Placement: Department of Ecology and Genetics

Type of employment: Full time , Temporary position longer than 6 months

Pay: Fixed salary

Number of positions: 1

Working hours: 100

Town: Uppsala

County: Uppsala län

Country: Sweden

Union representative: Saco-rådet
Seko Universitetsklubben

Number of reference: UFV-PA 2020/915

Last application date: 2020-04-30

If you apply for this position please say you saw it on Bioloxy


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