[Taxacom] PhD Research Fellowship (= PhD studentship) in Evolutionary Genomics and Zoology (the model taxon is the beetle genus Aegialites)

Vladimir Gusarov vladimir.gusarov at nhm.uio.no
Mon Apr 1 06:04:01 CDT 2019

PhD Research Fellowship (= PhD studentship) in Evolutionary Genomics and 

Job description

A PhD fellowship (= PhD studentship) is available at the Natural History 
Museum (NHM), University of Oslo, Norway. The position is placed in the 
research group “Frontiers in Evolutionary Zoology”.

The fellowship period is for 4 years, with 3 years in total devoted to 
carrying out a research project outlined below, and 1 year a compulsory 
work load (25 %) that will consist of teaching and supervision duties, 
collection work, outreach activities and research assistance. Starting 
date no later than 01.10.2019.

The complete text of the job announcement is available here: 
. The text below is an abridged version.

More about the position

The PhD project will address the foundations of speciation and dispersal 
in intertidal invertebrates characterized by seemingly no dispersal 
capacity. Many invertebrate species have very wide distribution ranges, 
but seemingly no or very low dispersal capacities. Some cases are known, 
for example, as the "Meiofauna paradox". However, detailed studies of 
some traditionally recognized widespread species revealed complexes of 
cryptic species. Regardless of whether the distant populations are 
conspecific or belong to different cryptic species, two general 
questions can be asked: “Why are these taxa from distant areas so 
similar?” and “How can they have dispersed over long distances and 
occupied distant shores in the absence of propagative stages?”. The 
beetle genus Aegialites is widely distributed across the northern 
Pacific Ocean shores, both in Asia and North America where the beetles 
live on coastal rocks flooded at high tides or sprinkled by waves. These 
beetles are wingless and have no obvious adaptations to dispersal, yet 
they occur even on some distant islands that have never been connected 
to continents.

The first aim of this project is to investigate the evolutionary history 
of this genus and to test if speciation is driven by vicariance or not. 
Second, the genome of an Aegialites species will be determined to allow 
genome re-sequencing approaches for the next hypotheses to be tested. 
Third, genome re-sequencing approaches will be applied to understand the 
dispersal capacity of Aegialites species at different geographical 
scales and, fourth, to test if hybridization between Aegialites species 
occurs possibly explaining their high morphological similarity. The 
results will contribute to answering the two more general questions 
above. Even though field work will be conducted to fill gaps in existing 
material, it will be necessary to complement these with historical 
museum material. Therefore, in this project both classical zoological 
and population and evolutionary genomic approaches will be explored 
including the usage of historical museum material for molecular studies 
(often called museomics).

The Natural History Museum has a modern DNA laboratory. The PhD will be 
associated with the research group “Frontiers in Evolutionary Zoology”, 
specifically Torsten Struck (Professor of Evolutionary Genomics) and 
Vladimir Gusarov (Associate Professor of Entomology).

Qualification requirements

- A Master’s degree or equivalent in biology or related disciplines like 
- Strong motivation for research in zoology and/or genomics.
- Skills in general molecular laboratory practices
- Experience with next-generation sequencing of genomes and working with 
small amounts of tissue material (i.e., whole genome amplification) is 
- Computing skills and background in bioinformatics are expected for 
handling and analyzing large data sets emerging from nextgeneration 
sequencing approaches.
- Background in entomology, particularly knowledge of beetle morphology 
and systematics, will be an advantage.
- Communication skills (including written and spoken English)

Grade requirements for admission to the PhD program

- The average grade point for courses included in the Bachelor’s degree 
must correspond to C or better in the Norwegian educational system.
- The average grade point for courses included in the Master’s degree 
must correspond to B or better in the Norwegian educational system
- The Master’s thesis must correspond to the grade B or better in the 
Norwegian educational system

The purpose of the fellowship is research training leading to the 
successful completion of a PhD degree. The fellowship requires admission 
to the PhD program at the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences. 
Appointment to a PhD research fellowship is conditional upon admission 
to the Faculty’s research training program. A plan for the research 
training must be submitted no later than two months after taking up the 
position, and the admission approved within three months.

We offer:

- Salary NOK 449 400 - 505 800 per year depending on qualification and 
seniority as PhD Research Fellow (position code 1017)
- Challenging research questions and friendly working environment
- Full funding of the project research-related activities, including 
molecular lab work, field work and presentation of results at 
international conferences.
- Membership in the Norwegian Public Service Pension Fund
- Attractive welfare benefits

How to apply. The application must include the following:

- Cover letter
- CV (summarizing education, positions and academic work, scientific 
publications and other relevant experience)
- Copies of educational certificates and transcripts of records
- List of publications and academic work that the applicant wishes to be 
considered by the evaluating committee
- A one-page statement explaining how a PhD in evolutionary genomics and 
zoology will fit into the applicant’s career plan
- Names and contact details of 2-3 references (name, affiliation, 
relation to candidate, e-mail and telephone number). The references will 
be contacted if necessary. Letters of recommendation are therefore not 
required for the initial application.

The application with attachments is to be delivered in our electronic 
recruiting system. Foreign applicants are advised to attach an 
explanation of their University’s grading system. Please remember that 
all documents should be in English or a Scandinavian language. In 
assessing applications, particular emphasis will be placed upon the 
academic and personal ability of the candidate to complete the project 
within the given time frame and write a PhD thesis under supervision. 
Interviews with selected candidates will be arranged.

Contact information (see the complete text of the announcement)

About the position and project details:
Professor and head of the FEZ research group: Professor Lutz Bachmann
Professor Torsten H. Struck

About administrative questions and the application procedure:
HR officer Thomas Brånå

Deadline: 30.04.2019.

Apologies for cross-posting.


Vladimir Gusarov, Ph.D.
Curator of Entomology
Department of Zoology
Natural History Museum
University of Oslo                           \\ /
P.O. Box 1172 Blindern                   ooooDD0-0C
NO-0318 Oslo                                 // \
Tel +47 22851703
Fax +47 22851837
email: vladimir.gusarov at nhm.uio.no

Visiting address (and non - P.O. Box address for courier deliveries):
Department of Zoology
Natural History Museum
University of Oslo
Sars Gate 1
NO-0562 Oslo

Insect collection: http://www.nhm.uio.no/english/research/nsi/collection/
Personal web page: 
Internet resources for Staphylinidae: 


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