Research Associate in Microbiome Research

Adelaide, Australia
$79,828 to $96,742 p.a.
27 Jun 2022
End of advertisement period
07 Aug 2022
Academic Discipline
Life sciences, Biological Sciences
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

About Flinders

Our bold vision, captured in our Strategic Plan: making a Difference: The 2025 Agenda, is to be internationally recognised as a world leader in research, an innovator in contemporary education, and the source of Australia’s most enterprising graduates.

To realise this ambition, we recently made a significant organisation change to a six College structure with a professional staff and services alignment.

We recognise the key to our success is exceptional people and we’re seeking an outstanding individual to join the team of our transformed university.

Employment Type:

Fixed Term (Fixed Term)

Position Summary

Fixed-term until September 2025 | Full-Time

Compensation Grade:
Research (Academic) Level A

Salary Range:
$79,828 to $96,742 p.a.

Reporting To:
Professor Elizabeth Dinsdale

The Research Associate will undertake research in Ecology, Environment and Evolution under the direction of Professor Elizabeth Dinsdale. In working with Chief Investigator Dinsdale and the research team, the incumbent will assist in Manipulating and Modeling Microbial Communities in Mine Wastes to assist in the remediation of mine waste.

The Corporative Research Center – TiME (Transformation in Mining Economies) is seeking to employ a Postdoctoral researcher that will focus on Manipulating and Modeling Microbial Communities in Mine Wastes. The specific CRC-TiME project is utilising both mineralogy and microbiology, for the assessment and remediation of the undersaturated mine waste zone through examination of the behaviour of mine wastes at a range of scales, with emphasis on the mesoscale. The researcher will be supported by the Flinders Accelerator for Microbiome Exploration, FAME interdisciplinary research group at Flinders University, Adelaide, Australia. The researcher will analyze microbiomes and metagenomes associated with Acid and Neutral Metalliferous Drainage sites to improve and speed up remediation and restoration of sites. The researcher will work with the Australia Genomics Research Facility to improve the extraction of genomic material from metalliferous environments. The researcher will collect and analyze microbiomes from mine sites from around the world, and/or those associated with experimental conditions. The outcome of the research will be to identify microbiomes associated with various conditions and inputs that could assist in remediation of the sites.

The incumbent may assist in leading students involved in the research Project, according to the University’s policies, practices and standards.

Key Position Responsibilities

The Research Associate in Microbiome Research is accountable for:

  • Assisting in leading the Project by collaborating with the Project Research Team to successfully deliver project milestones and Key Performance Indicators.
  • Contribute to the planning and execution of research by offering new ideas, reviewing relevant literature and other sources of information, actively participating in the production of data and attending seminars, meetings and conferences.
  • Statistically analyse microbiomes associated with metalliferous drainage.
  • Model the effect of the microbiome using random shotgun sequencing on the bio-chemical processes of the waste, with the goal of remediation of metal and acid levels in the waste.
  • Develop experimental approaches to test the effects of environmental variables on mineral-microbiome interactions.
  • Produce high level scientific publications and present research findings at local, national and international conferences.
  • Local, national, and international travel to conduct field research on microbiomes from mine sites.
  • Work collaboratively with a broad range of groups, including traditional owners, mining personnel national and international students and scientists and other industry partners.
  • Contribute to supervision of Honour students and Higher Degree by Research students (as appropriate).
  • Contribute to the coordinating, planning and executing the project tasks required to collaborate with industry partners.
  • Some out of hours work (including weekends) as well as rural SA, interstate and overseas travel, may be required.
  • Any other responsibilities in line with the level of the position as assigned by the Supervisor Professor Elizabeth Dinsdale and/or the University.

Key Position Capabilities

  • Completion of a PhD in one of the following areas: Microbial Ecology, Genomics, Microbiology, Bioinformatics, or related field.
  • Demonstrated experience in environmental microbiome research, microbiology, bioinformatics.
  • Demonstrated emerging research experience in terms of publications and presentations at a national and/or international level in a relevant field.
  • Demonstrated ability to deliver project targets on time.
  • Demonstrated well-developed interpersonal skills and the capacity to collaborate and engage with diverse stakeholders and industry partners.
  • Demonstrated ability to interpret random shotgun metagenomic datasets, using a range of bioinformatics programs. 
  • Demonstrate the ability to construct experiments to drive changes in soil chemistry.
  • Demonstrated ability to statistically analysis of large metagenomic data sets, including the use of PERMANOVA, SIMPER, and multivariate visualization.
  • Demonstrate ability to integrate across datasets including metagenomic, metabolomic, transcriptomic, environmental, or chemical datasets to develop models that integrate the microbiome into the remediation process.
  • Demonstrated excellent oral and written communication skills in an academic environment.

For more information regarding the position, or to have a confidential discussion, please contact: Professor Elizabeth Dinsdale

Prescribed Conditions of Employment:

Flinders University has introduced a COVID-19 Vaccination Policy that requires all new staff members to be up to date with their COVID-19 vaccinations, subject to medical exemptions and limited exemptions.

A National Police Certificate which is satisfactory to the University will be required by Flinders University before the successful applicant can commence in this position.

Information for Applicants:

You are required to provide a suitability statement of no more than three pages, addressing the key capabilities of the position as outlined above. In addition, you are required to upload your CV.

A valid National Police Certificate which is satisfactory to the University will also be required before the successful applicant can commence in this position.

We are seeking to increase the diversity to improve equal opportunity outcomes for employees, and therefore we encourage female applicants, people with a disability and/or from Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islanders descent to apply.

Please note, late applications and applications sent via agencies will not be accepted.

Applications Close 11:59 pm:

07 Aug 2022