A postdoctoral position is available in the research group of Richard Neher at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel. Our group works on evolution of pathogenic viruses and bacteria with a focus on seasonal influenza virus, SARS-CoV-2, enteroviruses, and drug resistance evolution in bacteria. Research in our group combines population genetics, phylogenetics, mathematical models, and next-generation sequencing to understand the complex dynamics of host-pathogen interactions. On one hand, we are interested in developing tools to analyze and visualize large datasets and maintain several popular tools such as Nextstrain (together with Trevor Bedford's group in Seattle), TreeTime, panX, and panGraph. On the other hand, we tackle fundamental questions of how microbes evolve in light of changing population immunity, drug therapy, or new environments. Adaptation via recombination, reassortment, and genome structure evolution are of particular interest to us.
Possible projects of a post-doctoral fellow include (i) novel phylogenetic and phylodynamic methods suitable for very large data sets, (ii) scalable inference from ancestral reassortment graphs of influenza, and (iii) evolution of gene content and gene order of bacterial chromosomes or plasmids. The scope of the projects is flexible, can be tailored to the applicants interest and skills, and we are open to exciting new ideas.
What we offer
You would have the opportunity to pursue original research in a small, interactive, and interdisciplinary group that tackles diverse problems in computational biology. We are internationally well connected and collaborate with several other research groups in Basel and in different parts of the world. We have access to state-of-the-art computing facilities, wet lab space, and sufficient funding for conference travel and research expenses. Our team includes a professional software engineer who can turn novel methods into robust and maintainable software. Salaries are competitive.
Whom we are looking for
We are looking for a creative and collaborative person with a genuine interest in evolution and with either a
- a degree in bioinformatics, computer science, physics, applied math or similar and a strong genuine interest in biology, or
- a life science degree and strong quantitative skills
If you are excited about this opportunity but unsure whether your profile matches what we are looking for, please get in touch.
Please send your cover letter, statement of research interests, CV, publication list, and contact information of three references as one pdf file to Richard Neher. Please state clearly in your cover letter what your main interests are and how you think it resonates with the work of our group. Reviewing of application will start on June 1st and continue until the position is filled.
Living and working in Basel
Quality of life in Basel is one of the highest worldwide. Basel is a very international city and a center of art, music, and research. The city is less than 5km from both France and Germany and an hour and a half from the Swiss Alps.
The Biozentrum of the University of Basel is one of the leading institutes worldwide for molecular and biomedical basic research. It is home to more than 30 research groups with scientists from over 40 countries. Research at the Biozentrum focuses on the areas of Cell Growth & Development, Infection Biology, Neurobiology, Structural Biology & Biophysics and Computational & Systems Biology. With its more than 500 employees, the Biozentrum is the largest department at the University of Basel’s Faculty of Science. Several other academic institutions are also in the city, including the Friedrich Miescher Institute, the ETH Zurich Biosystems Science and Engineering Department, and the Swiss Tropical Health Institute.