Postdoctoral Researcher in Sustainability Science

Helsinki, Finland
31 Jan 2023
End of advertisement period
20 Feb 2023
Contract Type
Fixed Term
Full Time

Helsinki Institute of Sustainability Science is a cross-faculty research platform in sustainability science within the University of Helsinki. The aim of the HELSUS funding is to enhance the development of sustainability science research at the University of Helsinki, to increase the amount of external research funding for sustainability science research and to enhance the societal impact of sustainability sciences.

We are looking for a highly motivated and interdisciplinarily orientated postdoctoral researcher in sustainability science to join HELSUS. The researcher will be employed for a minimum of 22 months at the University of Helsinki.  The position is located at HELSUS coordination unit at the Department of Agricultural Sciences, Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry.

The theme of the position is biodiversity loss, its mitigation and prevention. Strong societal impact is expected, including concrete collaborations with relevant societal stakeholders in co-creating, co-planning or co-designing new tools or elements for mitigating and preventing biodiversity loss. This position targets to allow testing solutions to prevent loss of biodiversity, in collaboration with societal change-makers be it political, municipal, company, NGO or other relevant actors. Via concrete cases, the research is expected to build wide systemic understanding of feasible solutions and potential positive and negative feedbacks included in any solution. 

The research topic in the position can focus on any ecological or social system, or their combination. Candidates from a variety of backgrounds are welcome to apply, since significant solutions to mitigation or prevention of loss of biodiversity can come equally from, for example, expertise on species and ecosystems, planning, regulation, or other perspectives, often working together. 

In this position, you are expected to engage in catalyzing sustainability transformations with relevant stakeholders, based on scientific knowledge. The appointee’s duties also include active participation in HELSUS activities and communications.

Who can apply  

For the postdoctoral researcher’s position, the appointee must have a doctoral degree in a relevant discipline and the ability to conduct independent scholarly work. The appointee must have a maximum of five years since the completion of their PhD. Possible career breaks (maternity, paternity, parental or childcare leave, military or nonmilitary service, or long-term illness) will be considered. If the applicant pleads these special reasons, they should be mentioned in the CV.

The call is not open for the members of the HELSUS Steering Group.    


  • The candidate should have track record in sustainability science, law, sociology, cultural studies, history, biology, humanities, ecology, governance studies, philosophy, ethics, risk management, or other relevant field
  • Focus on sustainability science  
  • Interdisciplinary quality of the research plan  
  • The applicant’s credibility in executing the research plan 
  • How the application contributes to the development of sustainability science and HELSUS  


  • Experience in carrying out research independently and working in a team
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills in English, Finnish is an asset
  • Good time management and project management skills 

How to apply

The application should include as one single pdf file:

  1. CV of the applicant including a list of, at most, 10 selected publications. The CV should include information relevant to the call and the length should not exceed 4 pages. It is suggested that the CV format recommended by the Finnish Board of Research Integrity is used:
  2. Research plan (in total max 3 pages) must be compiled according to the guidelines below to ensure comparability of applications and quality of the review process. Research plan shall be max 2 pages, with bibliography and graphs max 1 page (font size 12pt).  
  3. Contact information of two persons who can provide a reference letter based on request.

Please submit your application via our recruitment system by 20.2.2023 (23.59 EET).

External applicants, please submit your application using the University of Helsinki Recruitment System via Apply Now button.

Applicants who have a -username and a valid employment contract, a grant researcher’s contract or a visiting researcher’s contract at the University of Helsinki are requested to leave their application by using the employee login.

Salary and benefits

The postdoctoral researcher’s salary will be based on level 5 of the requirement 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 the appointee’s qualifications and experience. The starting gross salary will be ca. 3 300 – 3 500 euros/month, depending on the appointee’s qualifications and experience.

There will be a trial period of six months in the beginning of the employment contract.

The University of Helsinki invests in the welfare of its employees by offering preventative occupational health services and general medical care. Read more about the employee benefits at the University of Helsinki and why the University of Helsinki is an excellent career choice:

The University of Helsinki welcomes applicants from a variety of gender identities, and linguistic and cultural backgrounds.

Further information  

Further information on the position can be requested from HELSUS Director Susanna Lehvävirta, tel. 050 349 8116. 

For further information on the recruitment process and the recruitment system please contact HR Specialist Mirkka Juntunen (mirkka.juntunen(at)

About us

The University of Helsinki is among the leading multidisciplinary research universities in the world. In addition to its 11 faculties, the University includes several independent institutes, some of which are jointly operated with other universities. Some 35,000 students are currently pursuing an undergraduate or a postgraduate degree at the University of Helsinki.

The Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry is nationally unique faculty with a high international standing. 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.

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