Career Opportunities


Title: Plant Evolutionary Genomics & Ecophysiology
Position Type: Post-Doctoral Position
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Department: Biological Sciences
Field: evolutionary genomics, ecology
Pittsburgh, PA USA

General Information: Postdoctoral fellow to join a collaborative project examining functional, population genetic and ecophysiological mechanisms underlying success of polyploid plants.

The work aims to predict the effect of whole genome duplication on ecological and evolutionary responses to environmental change.  The postdoc will identify the ecological, population genetic and genomic factors that underlie functional trait (e.g., associated with drought and freeze tolerance) variation, ecological amplitude and gene expression diversity using the wild strawberry (Fragaria) as a model system (see Liston et al 2014. AJB101:1686-1699; Johnson et al 2014 Bot J Linn Soc 176:99-114). The specific goals are to 1) analyze gene expression (transcriptomes) and physiological traits of natural and synthetic polyploids and their diploid progenitors in the greenhouse and common gardens at climatically diverse sites, 2) use NGS of target-captured sequence from natural populations of plants to identify patterns of genetic diversity and signatures of selection, reconstruct phylogenetic relationships and generate high density linkage maps (Tennesson et al 2014 GBE 6:3295-3313).

The postdoc position is for two years, renewable up to two additional years. Start date is negotiable, but June 2015 is preferred.

The project is collaboration among the labs of Dr. Tia-Lynn Ashman, Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Pittsburgh and Dr. Aaron Liston, Department of Botany and Plant Pathology, and Dr. Richard Cronn US Forest Service at Oregon State University.

Qualifications: We are looking for an evolutionary-minded candidate with a genomics, ecophysiological and/or population ecology background interested in a combination of field work and genomic work. Candidates that have demonstrated experience in transcriptome analysis, genetic linkage mapping, and/or population and comparative genomics are preferred.  Ability to travel between field sites in Oregon and laboratory in Pennsylvania is required.

Responsibilities: Responsibilities include the establishment and monitoring of experiments in the field and under controlled conditions in the lab, collection and analysis of population genetic/genomic, phenotypic and physiological data, and the preparation of manuscripts for publication.  The project affords opportunities for international travel and training as part of an US-China international research collaboration. There is also the opportunity to design and implement additional allied projects tailored to the skills and interests of the postdoc.

Instructions: TO APPLY: Please send a CV and a description of your experience and interests as relevant to the position to, along with the names and contact information for three referees. In a covering letter clearly highlight skills and experience related to key responsibilities (e.g., plant ecophysiology, transcriptome analysis, NGS library prep, statistics, bioinformatics).

Deadline for application materials is February 28, 2015.

ContactN: Tia-Lynn
Reviews Start: 1/30/2015
Apps Close: 2/28/2015


Title: Tree Conservation Biologist
Position Type: Permanent Position
Institution: The Morton Arboretum
Department: Research
Field: Conservation Biology
Lisle, Illinois USA

General Information: The Morton Arboretum is a 1,700-acre public botanical garden, featuring one of the world's most diverse collections of woody plants, over 900 acres of natural areas, a comprehensive research library, modern laboratories and herbarium, and outreach education for professional and public audiences. Research at the Arboretum has focused throughout its 92-year history on finding practical solutions to the challenges of selecting and maintaining healthy trees in developed landscapes and natural woodlands, and on communicating results to practicing professionals and general public as well as the research community. See  The Morton Arboretum is an equal opportunity employer, committed to achieving a diverse workforce.

Qualifications: Qualifications: Ph.D. in conservation biology or related field; a strong background in sampling, analysis and experimental design; in-depth understanding of plant ecology and conservation; proficiency in ecological modeling and statistical analysis of ecological data; demonstrated commitment to conservation research and its application to conservation practice; strong written and verbal communication skills.

Responsibilities: The Morton Arboretum invites nominations and applications for a full-time Conservation Biologist with a strong interest in tree conservation. Applicants with a strong plant conservation biology background are encouraged to apply. Research topics may include conservation genetics, niche/distribution modeling, experimental approaches to restoration ecology, population viability analysis, community assembly, trait-based or phylogenetic ecology, leading edge evolutionary dynamics, dispersal biology, or other topics in conservation biology. The successful applicant will demonstrate a commitment to integrating basic research on why woody plants succeed or decline with application to plant conservation.

Research conducted in this position should be of broad, national or international interest and work toward the goals of the Arboretum's Center for Tree Science (CTS). The Tree Conservation Biologist will work collaboratively with other CTS researchers, the CTS Tree Conservation Specialist, and collaborators worldwide to impact tree conservation practices regionally and globally.

The Arboretum is well placed to facilitate interactions with students, graduate students, postdocs and faculty in the plant sciences throughout the Chicago region. Involvement in mentoring junior scientists at some level is expected. Additionally, a long history of collaboration with Forest Preserve Districts in the Chicago region provides a springboard for potential long-term experimental and observational research.

Expectations include establishing an internationally recognized research program; publishing in scientific, professional, and popular journals; obtaining extramural funding; interacting with conservation and scientific communities; and contributing to Arboretum educational and horticultural programs. There are opportunities for academic teaching and advising, with potential adjunct faculty status at area universities.

Instructions: Applicants should send a letter of application and curriculum vitae to: The Morton Arboretum, Human Resources, 4100 Illinois Route 53, Lisle, IL 60532 or  For further information or to nominate candidates, please contact Search Committee Chair, Dr. Andrew Hipp (;  630-725-2094. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. For full consideration, submit application materials by February 28, 2015.

ContactN: Andrew Hipp
Reviews Start: 02/28/15
Apps Close:  3/15/15


Title: Permanent Program Director
Position Type: Permanent Federal
Institution: National Science Foundation
Department: Division of Environmental Biology
Field: Systematics and Biodiversity Science
Arlington, VA USA

General Information: The National Science Foundation <> (NSF) is seeking candidates for Program Director in the Systematics and Biodiversity Science Cluster (SBS) within the Division of Environmental Biology (DEB), Directorate for Biological Sciences (BIO) in Arlington, VA. Additional information about the position and the application process can be found here:

The DEB supports fundamental research on populations, species, communities, and ecosystems. Scientific emphases range across many evolutionary and ecological patterns and processes at all spatial and temporal scales. Areas of research include biodiversity, phylogenetic systematics, molecular evolution, life history evolution, natural selection, ecology, biogeography, ecosystem services, conservation biology, global change, and biogeochemical cycles. Research on origins, functions, relationships, interactions, and evolutionary history may incorporate field, laboratory, or collection-based approaches; observational or manipulative experiments; synthesis activities; as well as theoretical approaches involving analytical, statistical, or simulation modeling.

The SBS cluster supports research that advances our understanding of the diversity, systematics, and evolutionary history of organisms in natural systems. This research addresses fundamental questions in biodiversity, taxonomy, and phylogenetics, such as: What kinds of organisms exist in the natural world? How are they related? How did evolution lead to patterns of global biodiversity in time and space? How can phylogenetic history shed light on evolutionary patterns and processes in nature? Example topics include: expeditionary biodiversity research and discovery; identification and classification of organisms; and phylogeny and comparative phylogenetic biology. The SBS Cluster seeks to fund projects that are transformative - that is, those that innovatively and fundamentally transform our approaches to analyzing and understanding global biodiversity, its origins, distribution, and evolutionary history. The Cluster places a high value on integrative and holistic approaches to systematics research and training - i.e., those approaches and projects that integrate across all the components within the cluster (biodiversity discovery, organismal biology, taxonomy, phylogenetics, and evolution) and that train highly integrative systematists who can conduct research across the entire spectrum of these activities. 

Qualifications: Candidates must have a Ph.D. in biology or a related field with an emphasis in systematic biology science, plus after award of the Ph.D., six or more years of successful research, research administration, and/or managerial experience in this scientific area.

Applications will be accepted from US Citizens. Recent changes in Federal Appropriations Law requires Non-Citizens to meet certain eligibility criteria to be considered. Therefore, Non-Citizens must certify eligibility by signing and attaching a Citizenship Affidavit to their application (see: for link to form)

Responsibilities: The responsibilities of the Program Director include long-range planning and budget development for the areas of science represented by the program or program cluster, the administration of the peer review process and proposal recommendations, the preparation of press releases, feature articles and material describing advances in the research supported, and coordination and liaison with other programs in NSF, other Federal agencies and organizations. Additional duties and responsibilities include the following:


* Maintains a healthy balance of support for all the needs of the research and education enterprise through program, division, directorate, Foundation, or interagency activities.

* Manages program resources to provide optimal appropriate scientific judgment to insure integrity and consistency in the grant/declination process without conflicts of interest, and with balance among appropriate sub-fields and institutions, and participation of all qualified scientists.

* Manages an effective, timely merit review process, with attention to increasing the size and quality of the reviewer pools and insuring participation by women, minorities and disabled scientists.

* Provides scientific expertise, evaluation and advice for other programs in NSF, including international programs, and other research programs, and cross-directorate programs.

* Advises and assists in the development of short-and-long range plans, establishing goals and objectives for support of research programs.

* Plans the budget for the program considering past, present and future fiscal years, allocates resources within the budget by distributing scarce resources among competitive projects, and manages post-award evaluation.

* Controls waste, fraud and abuse.


* Represents the Program, Division and the Foundation within the scientific community, with other NSF Divisions, with other appropriate agencies and organizations, and with the public, accurately reflecting NSF policy and positions.

* Creates and maintains linkages to other NSF units and other Federal agencies in pursuit of the overall NSF mission.

* Participates in staff, panel, committee and other meetings, providing input relevant to program area and/or Division.

* Pursues affirmative action and Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) goals.

* Pursues and/or is responsive to assignment on special projects and temporary function teams across the Foundation to solve problems, improve staff communication, and effect coordination for special programs.

* Contributes ideas and effort to improving the quality of policies and NSF's performance of the overall mission.

* Prepares and disseminates a variety of informational documents which may include data on progress being made toward NSF goals, trends and opportunities papers, and budget plans.


* Establishes contacts and maintains active involvement in Program and related areas through participation in professional activities.

* Maintains familiarity with salient current research developments.

* Pursues individual research as workload and travel funds permit.

* Expands administrative capabilities through training courses or assumption of new management.                

Instructions: For information about the position and application process see:

ContactN: Simon Malcomber
Reviews Start:  02/10/15
Apps Close: 02/09/15


Title: Invertebrate Biologist
Position Type: Tenure-Track Assistant Professor
Institution: St. Edward's University
Department: Biological Sciences
Field: invertebiology biology
Austin, TX USA

General Information: St. Edward's University (SEU) in Austin, Texas invites applications for an invertebrate biologist to serve as a tenure track assistant professor in Biological Sciences, beginning mid-August, 2015. Applicants should have the interest and ability to teach a variety of biology courses and have research interests in invertebrate biology. Responsibilities include teaching major's general biology lecture and labs, evolution and the development of elective courses in the applicant's area of expertise. The successful candidate will also be expected to establish a successful research program involving undergraduates, be involved in undergraduate advising and in service to the department, school and university. SEU is a diverse community which appreciates faculty and students from all backgrounds.  It is an exciting time to be part of the St. Edward's community as the university increases its global engagement to educate students for the opportunities and challenges of a 21st century world.

More about St. Edward's University: Founded in 1885 by the Congregation of Holy Cross, St. Edward's University is a private, Catholic liberal arts institution of more than 5,000 students located in Austin, Texas. St. Edward's emphasizes critical thinking and ethical practices, as well as small classes, personalized learning and exciting internship opportunities. The community appreciates faculty and students from all backgrounds, as engagement with various perspectives prepares our students to be involved and equipped for life in a global society. The School of Natural Sciences offers B.A. and/or B.S. degrees in Biology, Medical Laboratory Science, Biochemistry, Bioinformatics, Environmental Chemistry, Chemistry, Computer Information Science, Computer Science, Forensic Chemistry, and Mathematics.  The School is located in the recently completed John Brooks Williams Science Center complex. The Wild Basin Creative Research Center (WBCRC) serves as an extension of main campus and includes 227 acres within the Balcones Canyonlands Preserve system.

Qualifications: - Ph.D. in biology required.

- Commitment to developing teaching excellence.

- Excellent interpersonal and communication skills.

- Commitment to serving a diverse student body.

- Successful completion of an employment and/or criminal history background check.

Responsibilities: - Initial teaching assignments include the senior-level Evolution course and the freshman-level Organisms and Populations lecture and laboratory with the possibility of additional opportunities in first year biology courses for non-majors.

- Development of elective courses in the applicant's area of expertise.

- Development of a successful research program involving undergraduates.

- Other required duties as specified in the Faculty Manual.

Instructions: Applications reviewed immediately and until position filled. Individuals are asked to include a cover letter that includes any courses which the applicant is especially qualified to teach (see Undergraduate Bulletin: and should indicate ways in which the applicant will support St. Edward's commitment to fostering a global perspective and to serving diverse students. Application must also include: SEU application, vita, a teaching philosophy, a short statement of research interests indicating how you will engage undergraduates and whether this work could involve WBCRC and the names, addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses of three references submitted online:

St. Edward's University is an equal opportunity employer and hires only U.S. citizens and documented workers.

ContactN: Amanda Kenney
Reviews Start: 10/16/2014
Apps Close: 03/29/2015


Title: Plant Evolutionary Biologist
Position Type: Tenure-Track Assistant Professor
Institution: California State University, Long Beach
Department: Biological Sciences
Field: Plant Evolutionary Biologist
Long Beach, CA, USA

General Information: POSITION: Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences (Plant Evolutionary Biologist)

EFFECTIVE DATE: August 17, 2015 (Fall Semester)

SALARY RANGE: Commensurate with qualifications and experience

RESEARCH SUPPORT: Facilities include three rooftop greenhouses built in 2011, two ground-level greenhouses, outdoor growing space, an AR-66L2X Percival growth chamber and one full-time botany technician. The new greenhouses are specialized for temperate (1360 sq. ft.), tropical (1360 sq. ft.), and arid (720 sq. ft.) conditions. The Department of Biological Sciences has several 4-wheel drive vehicles for general research use.

Qualifications: MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS:         Ph.D. in the biological sciences or related field and post-doctoral training and research in plant evolution utilizing both morphological and molecular traits. Record of peer-reviewed published research in plant evolutionary biology and potential for developing and sustaining an externally funded research program that involves students. Demonstrated potential for effective teaching of courses in Plant Morphology and Vascular Plant Systematics. Demonstrated commitment to working successfully with a diverse student population.

DESIRED/PREFERRED QUALIFICATIONS: Knowledge of and experience with a broad range of cutting edge phylogenetic methods. Field research experience. Potential for developing a research program relevant to the Southern California region. Prior teaching at the university level. Potential to teach core biology courses at the undergraduate and graduate level. Evidence of ability to mentor undergraduate and graduate students in research. Record of extramural research support.

Responsibilities: DUTIES: Teach courses in Plant Morphology and Vascular Plant Systematics (with emphasis on the local flora) and in the undergraduate and graduate biology core curricula. Develop an active, externally funded research program that involves undergraduate and graduate students resulting in scientific presentations and publications. Participate in service to the department, college, university, and community.

Instructions: A Student Success Statement about your teaching or other experiences, successes, and challenges in working with a diverse student population (approximately one page)

*       Letter of application addressing the minimum and desired/preferred qualifications

*       CV (including current email address)

*       Statement of Research Interests

*       Statement of Teaching Philosophy

*       Reprints of three representative publications

*       Copy of transcript from institution awarding highest degree

*       Three current references or letters of recommendation sent directly to the address below.

*      Finalists will also be required to submit a signed SC-1 form, three current letters of recommendation(if not already submitted), and an official transcript.

Applicant documentation should be assembled into ONE PDF document and sent to Letters of recommendation, other required documentation, and/or requests for information should be addressed to the search committee:

Dr. Judy Brusslan, Chair
California State University, Long Beach
Department of Biological Sciences
1250 Bellflower Boulevard
Long Beach, CA 90840-9502

ContactN: Judy Brusslan
Reviews Start: 10/10/2014
Apps Close: 02/16/2015