Doctoral Student and Postdoctoral Researcher, Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry
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The University of Helsinki is one of the best multidisciplinary research universities in the world. In addition to its 11 faculties, the University of Helsinki includes several independent institutes, some of which are jointly operated with other universities. The University of Helsinki is an international academic community of 40,000 students and staff members. It operates on four campuses in Helsinki and at 15 other locations.
The Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry is located on the Viikki campus, ten kilometres from the Helsinki city centre. The mission of the faculty is to promote the sustainable use of renewable natural resources through scientific research and research-based teaching. We focus on agricultural and forest sciences, food and nutrition, microbiology, as well as on economics and management. We cover the full natural resource chain from farm to fork, the entire field of forest sciences from soil chemistry to marketing, as well as the environmental effects of related activities. Graduates from the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry are versatile experts in biosciences and business, able to meet the needs of both the business sector and society at large.
The Food Materials Science research group, led by Associate Professor Kirsi Mikkonen, is in the Department of Food and Nutrition, one of the six units of the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry. The group is working in collaboration with Associate Professor Arto Klami from the Department of Computer Science.
The Multi-source Probabilistic Inference group, led by Associate Professor Arto Klami, is in the Department of Computer Science at Faculty of Science. The group works on statistical machine learning and artificial intelligence, and applications of these methods in other sciences. The group belongs to the Finnish Center for Artificial Intelligence (FCAI), a national flagship of Academy of Finland, and Helsinki Institute for Information Technology HIIT, and is well networked within the international research community.
DOCTORAL STUDENTS AND POSTDOCTORAL RESEARCHERS IN COMPUTATIONAL MODELLING / PLANT METABOLOMICS / FOOD TECHNOLOGY / ANALYTICAL CHEMISTRY
A summary of the four open positions (and co-supervisor):
- Postdoctoral researcher 1: Computational modelling focusing on data analytics, using spectral imaging (Assoc. Prof. Arto Klami)
- PhD Student/Postdoctoral researcher 2: Plant metabolomics, using metabolomics and transcriptomics, spectral imaging and data analytics (Assoc. Prof. Saijaliisa Kangasjärvi)
- PhD Student/Postdoctoral Researcher 3: Storage and shelf life assessment, food technology, packaging, sensory analysis (Prof. Mari Sandell)
- PhD Student/Postdoctoral Researcher 4: Chemical analysis, mass spectrometry, chromatography (Dr. Mari Lehtonen)
The postdoctoral researchers and doctoral students will be appointed for a fixed-term 2 to 4-year contract to work in a Novo Nordisk Foundation funded project entitled “VegeSense”.
This project aims to reveal the mechanisms of post processing senescence to secure the supply of high-quality vegetables for the planetary diet. We seek to remarkably advance the field by developing a new combination of spectral imaging, artificial intelligence, and advanced chemical analytical tools to provide complementary understanding of the plant deterioration pathways. To achieve this we will build upon hyperspectral imaging technology and artificial intelligence for post-processing vegetable research to monitor changes occurring in cut plant tissues, and provide know-how to control and minimize those changes.
Postdoctoral researchers: We are looking for highly motivated and skilled researchers with a PhD degree and experience in plant metabolomics, computational/mathematical modelling, biotechnology, data analysis, or other related fields. The postdoctoral researchers are expected to contribute to research on post processing senescence of vegetables from a metabolomics, transcriptomic and computational modelling perspective. The appointed researchers will work in collaboration with the other members of Assist. Prof. Arto Klami, Assoc. Prof. Saijaliisa Kangasjärvi, Prof. Mari Sandell, Dr. Mari Lehtonen and Assoc. Prof. Kirsi Mikkonen’s research groups and will be co-supervised by them.
Doctoral students: We are looking for highly motivated and skilled researchers with a master’s degree in food or materials science, chemistry, biotechnology, or other related fields. The PhD students are expected to contribute to research on food technology related to the storage of vegetables from a physicochemical perspective, using techniques including sensory analysis, spectrometry and chromatography.
A person appointed as a doctoral student is required to apply for the right for doctoral studies from the University of Helsinki within six months after starting the post.
A successful candidate should be able to:
- Identify, design, conduct, and report research on senescence from a biochemical, biological and computational perspective.
- Contribute to proposal writing to apply for further research funding.
- Contribute to master/doctoral student supervision and teaching of food science or chemistry.
- Engage with the scientific community, research partners and the wider public, internationally and domestically through scientific publications, conference presentations, press releases, blogs etc.
The candidate is expected to have:
Education, experience and technical skills
- A relevant doctoral or master’s degree including experience in plant metabolomics, computational/mathematical modelling, biotechnology, data analysis, food science, chemistry or other related fields.
- Fluency in English and excellent writing skills.
- Experience in working with metabolomics, food technologic, chromatographic, or spectrometric approaches.
Personal attributes and competencies
- Interest in basic and applied science.
- Excellent analytical and innovative research planning skills.
- Excellent interpersonal and communication skills, experienced in working within multicultural and multidisciplinary teams.
- High motivation for academic research, having initiative and capable of working independently as well as in team environments.
- Values continuous improvement based on constructive evaluation, self-reflection and learning.
- Flexible mindset and ability to work together and communicate with people from different disciplines.
The salary of the postdoctoral researcher 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. The starting salary of the postdoctoral researcher will be ca. 3200–3500 euros/month, depending on the appointees’ qualifications and experience.
The salary of the doctoral student will be based on level 2 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. The starting salary of the postdoctoral researcher will be ca. 2250-2400 euros/month, depending on the appointees’ qualifications and experience.
The University of Helsinki offers comprehensive services to its employees, including occupational health care and health insurance, sports facilities, and opportunities for professional development. The International Staff Services office (https://www.helsinki.fi/en/university/working-at-the-university) assists employees from abroad with their transition to work and life in Finland. A six-month trial period will be applied.
The attachment required for the application include (preferable in a single pdf-file):
- A cover letter explaining the applicant’s motivation for the research work and a short research plan (e.g. approach, research materials and methods) (up to 3 pages).
- Curriculum vitae showing the applicant's education, completed qualifications, work experience, possible list of publications and contact information of 2 persons for references (up to 3 pages).
- Copies of Doctoral, Master's, and Bachelor's degree certificates and official transcripts of the records, and their translations, if the originals are not in Finnish, Swedish or English.
Please submit your application through the University of Helsinki Recruitment System via the link Apply for the position. Applicants who are employees of the University of Helsinki are requested to leave their application by signing to https://msap.helsinki.fi.
The closing date for applications is 14 November 2021 at 23:59 EEST.
Further information about the positions may be obtained from Associate Professor Kirsi Mikkonen (firstname.lastname@example.org), Associate Professor Arto Klami (email@example.com), or Project Coordinator Troy Faithfull (firstname.lastname@example.org).
14.11.2021 23:59 EET