NORWEGIAN UNIVERSITY OF SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY - NTNU

Application Scientist

About the position

We are pleased to advertise a position as a senior application scientist at the 2-photon miniscope imaging facility (2MIF) of theKavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience, NTNU, Norway.

We are looking for a senior-level application scientist to direct the development and distribution of open-source miniature portable microscopes (MINI2P) for 2-photon calcium imaging in freely moving mice. 2MIF’s mission is to develop cutting-edge, open-source miniscopes and enable neuroscientists and biology labs around the world to build their own miniscopes and set up the technology. The facility is located at the Kavli Institute at NTNU in Trondheim. The application scientist will provide training in setup building, microscope assembly, system operation, and data processing. Training may take place on-site at 2MIF, or digitally, or by travel to host sites. 2MIF will maintain multiple running systems locally which will be actively updated based on the latest development of technology.

The Kavli Institute for Systems Neuroscience was designated as a Kavli Foundation Institute in 2007 (www.kavlifoundation.org). The scientific goal of the Institute is to understand neural circuits and systems in the cortex and to identify neural-population mechanisms underlying high-level cognitive functions (www.ntnu.edu/kavli).

The focus of the institute’s Nobel-awarded work is on mechanisms for space and memory coding in the hippocampus and entorhinal cortex (https://www.ntnu.edu/kavli/moser-group#/view/about).

Scientists at the institute have recently developed a miniature portable 2-photon miniscope (MINI2P) for high-resolution multiplane imaging of thousands of neurons in cortical tissue of freely-moving mice (W. Zong et al., Cell, March 2022).

With the establishment of 2MIF, and the search for an application scientist in charge of the facility, we seek to consolidate and develop the technology and distribute it worldwide.

The scientist will receive specific training on building and development of MINI2P microscopes.

You will report to Professor Edvard Moser

Duties of the position

  • Lead and manage 2MIF
  • Build fully-functional miniature two-photon microscopy systems (MINI2P) for 2MIF, fulfil complete system characterization, document performance test results; help external users to do the same.
  • Operate, maintain, and troubleshoot MINI2P systems at the expert level for the benefit of local as well as remote users
  • Design digital and in-person training programs on the technology
  • Develop training materials, design training modules, prepare training documents, and organize training courses
  • Ensure training programs are conducted regularly and are accessible on a global scale
  • Provide technical support to MINI2P users worldwide, and if necessary, travel to users and assist them in building up the system as well as troubleshooting
  • Work closely with research groups internally and around the world to validate the technology for new applications
  • Independently troubleshoot and resolve technical issues (biology, hardware, software) and inquiries by email, phone, or in-person visits
  • Prioritize the researcher's needs and demonstrate a sense of urgency and professionalism, through thoughtfully written, verbal, and in-person interactions
  • Collaborate with global users to understand the objectives and requirements of their scientific imaging needs, and plan for effective visits to 2MIF or on-site visits
  • Keep track of the latest development of this technique in the world and seek creative ways to enhance the utility of the technology
  • Attending scientific conferences and giving presentations will be expected
  • Interpret images and scientific results to propose and perform subsequent experiments and procedures. This will involve a combination of software analysis tools, collaboration with users, and intuition developed through significant prior experience in brain calcium imaging.

Required selection criteria

  • Ph.D in Optical Engineering, Applied Physics, Biophysics, Biomedical Engineering, Electric Engineering, or equivalent from a related field
  • Minimum of five years of hands-on experience in advanced optical microscopy, with a focus on multi-photon microscopy and in-vivo calcium imaging applications, preferably in neuroscience.
  • Experience in using engineering software including hardware control, 3D design, or optical simulation software (e. g. Solidworks, CAD, Zemax, Labview, etc).
  • Experience in analyzing complex data and troubleshooting hardware, software and consumable issues
  • Ability to operate complex custom imaging instrumentation is required.
  • Ability to troubleshoot and resolve issues with test sample preparation, imaging system performance, configuration, and usage,
  • Ability to effectively communicate both remotely and in-person with users, in writing and verbally. Candidates are expected to share outcomes of evaluations and experiments, and guide future efforts to optimize results required.
  • Ability to evaluate proposals for technical feasibility and manage progress on multiple projects concurrently.
  • Ability to collaborate closely with users, providing training, experimental design, and execution. Experience with data analysis and interpretation is required.
  • Prior teaching experience and experience generating teaching/training content (protocols, slides) is a must.
  • Good written and oral English and Norwegian language skills

Preferred selection criteria

  • Experience with miniscopes for calcium imaging in freely-moving mice
  • Experience in image processing and analysis methods, including the development of custom algorithms
  • Experience in using scripting languages (e. g. Java, Matlab, Python, C+); this is not required but ideal candidates will have prior experience in developing custom algorithms for data analysis
  • Experience in big data management and setting up of open-access, standardized databases (e. g. Datajoint, Amazon database, BIO-FORMATs, IDR, etc)
  • Extensive work experience and knowledge from experimental neuroscience, particularly in rodents
  • 2+ years technical support or field applications support experience in life sciences
  • Prior experience with content creation and instructional design tools/software and implementing Learning Management Systems

Personal characteristics

  • Growth mindset and creative problem-solving skills - ability to solve novel problems while maintaining a positive attitude.
  • Excellent time management and organizational skills with the ability to balance speed with quality.
  • Ability to work effectively and productively, both independently and cross-functionally.
  • Outstanding listening, communication and interpersonal skills.
  • Ability to adapt quickly to new projects and challenges.

We offer

Salary and conditions

The gross salary for the position of Reseacher 1109 and starting salary as agreed as this will be depending on qualifications and seniority. From the salary, 2% is deducted as a contribution to the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund.

The engagement is to be made in accordance with the regulations in force concerning State Employees and Civil Servants, and the acts relating to Control of the Export of Strategic Goods, Services and Technology. Candidates whose applications conflict with the criteria in the latter law will be prohibited from recruitment to NTNU. It is also to be understood that after the appointment there may be changes in the area of work.

The position is subject to external funding. 

It is a prerequisite that you can be present at and accessible to the institution daily. 

About the application

The application and supporting documentation must be in English.

Please submit your application electronically via jobbnorge.no with;

  • current CV and publication list, including a description of your contribution to each work
  • a 1-page personal statement of why you are the right candidate
  • a list of 3 references and a description of their relationship to you

Please note that applications are only evaluated based on the information available on the application deadline. You should ensure that your application shows clearly how your skills and experience meet the criteria which are set out above.

If, for any reason, you have taken a career break or have had an atypical career and wish to disclose this in your application, the selection committee will take this into account, recognizing that the quantity of your research may be reduced as a result. 

The application must include (Departments to choose from the following)

  • CV, certificates and diplomas 
  • Academic works - published or unpublished - that you would like to be considered in the assessment (up to 10 works) 
  • A description of the academic/artistic works that you regard as most relevant and that you particularly want to be considered in the assessment 
  • Name and address of three referees 

Joint works will be considered. If it is difficult to identify your contribution to joint works, you must attach a brief description of your participation.

In the assessment of the best qualified applicant, we will emphasize education, experience and personal suitability as well as your motivation for the position. 

NTNU is committed to following evaluation criteria for research quality according to The San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment - DORA. This means that we pay special attention to the quality and professional breadth of these works. We also consider experience from research management and participation in research projects. We place great emphasis on your scientific work from the last five years.

General information

A good work environment is characterized by diversity. We encourage qualified candidates to apply, regardless of their gender, functional capacity or cultural background.

As an employee at NTNU, you must at all times adhere to the changes that the development in the subject entails and the organizational changes that are adopted. 

Under the Freedom of Information Act (offentleglova), your name, age, position and municipality may be made public even if you have requested not to have your name entered on the list of applicants.   

If you have any questions about the position, please contact to Professor Edvard Moser: edvard.moser@ntnu.no. If you have any questions about the recruitment process, please contact HR-consultant Anne Karin Henning, e-mail anne.karin.henning@ntnu.no

Please submit your application and supporting documentation via jobbnorge.no. If you are invited for interview, you must bring certified copies of certificates and diplomas. Mark the application with reference number: xxx. 

Application deadline: 18.09.2022

NTNU - knowledge for a better world

The Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) creates knowledge for a better world and solutions that can change everyday life.

The Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences (MH) is one of NTNU’s largest faculties with about 1800 employees (1300 full-time equivalents).

The Faculty’s main activities are education and research in close integration with St Olav’s Hospital. For further information, see: https://www.ntnu.edu/mh.

Deadline 2nd October 2022
Employer NTNU - Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Municipality Trondheim
Scope Fulltime
Duration Permanent
Place of service Øya