Postdoc in bioinformatics and metagenomics of the phyllosphere microbiome

The Department of Plant and Environmental Science (PLEN) and the Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Protein Research (CPR) invite applications for a joint two-year postdoc position within the field of bioinformatics, metagenomics, network biology and potentially machine learning with start August 1st 2021, or as soon as possible thereafter. The position will be equally shared among The Section for Microbial Ecology and Biotechnology, Environmental Microbial Genomics Group, PLEN, led by Professor Lars Hestbjerg Hansen and The Rasmussen Group, CPR, led by Associate Professor Simon Rasmussen.

The position is advertised in connection to a newly established multidisciplinary program, The MATRIX: “Microbiome Assisted Triticum Resilience In X-dimensions”, funded by the Novo Nordisk Foundation, to address the taxonomic diversity and functional potential of the wheat phyllosphere microbiome. Today, more than one third of crop yields are lost due to abiotic and biotic stress factors, such as drought, salinity, pests and disease. In the MATRIX program several key microorganisms and regulatory mechanisms involved in wheat growth promotion and protection against biotic and abiotic stresses will be identified. By combining new microbiome-assisted approaches with machine learning and predictive modelling the MATRIX aims to quantitate and predict microbiome-mediated changes and their effect on wheat resilience and productivity under various climate change scenarios, which can be used as a novel tool to improve future wheat yield management strategies.

The candidate will be expected to conduct independent research within metagenomics, microbial network biology, machine learning and integration of multiple data types obtained from the wheat flag leaf microbiome. The candidate is expected to some degree to engage in teaching and supervision and the post may also include performance of other duties.

Candidates must have a Ph.D. or similar qualifications within computational biology, microbiology, metagenomic analysis, network analysis, machine learning applied to microbiology or other relevant research fields. Experience in programming in bash/Unix, R or python is strongly desirable. Also, experience within the field of plant-associated microbiomes is an advantage.  

The candidate is expected to be enthusiastic about working in an interdisciplinary academic environment conduction research and teaching at the highest international level. The position, therefore, requires a highly motivated scientist who is comfortable working in teams, have good interpersonal skills, as well as a collaborative and open mind-set.

Further information on the Faculties is linked at and More information on the MATRIX project is linked at

Inquiries about the position can be made to Prof. Lars Hestbjerg Hansen; e-mail:, or Associate Prof. Simon Rasmussen; e-mail:

The position is open from August 1st 2021 or as soon as possible thereafter.

The University wishes our staff to reflect the diversity of society and thus welcomes applications from all qualified candidates regardless of personal background.

Terms of employment
The position is covered by the Memorandum on Job Structure for Academic Staff.
Terms of appointment and payment accord to the agreement between the Ministry of Finance and The Danish Confederation of Professional Associations on Academics in the State.
The starting salary is currently up to DKK 437.843 including annual supplement (+ pension up to DKK 74.871). Negotiation for salary supplement is possible.

The application, in English, must be submitted electronically by clicking APPLY NOW below.

Please include

  • Curriculum vitae
  • Cover letter
  • Diplomas (Master and PhD degree or equivalent)
  • Complete publication list
  • Separate reprints of up to 3 particularly relevant papers

The deadline for applications is Tuesday June 15th 2021, 23:59 GMT +2.

Interviews will be held in July 2021.

After the expiry of the deadline for applications, the authorized recruitment manager selects applicants for assessment on the advice of the Interview Committee.

You can read about the recruitment process at


Part of the International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU), and among Europe’s top-ranking universities, the University of Copenhagen promotes research and teaching of the highest international standard. Rich in tradition and modern in outlook, the University gives students and staff the opportunity to cultivate their talent in an ambitious and informal environment. An effective organisation – with good working conditions and a collaborative work culture – creates the ideal framework for a successful academic career.


Application deadline: 15-06-2021
Employment start: 01-08-2021
Working hours: Full time
Department/Location: Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences
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