Teagasc Soil Biotechnologist

(Ref: DS1543)

Basic Function:

The Technologist will have a key role in assisting researchers within the soil and environmental microbiology research programme and will take an active role in contributing to ongoing research projects in this area. He/she will be responsible for the administration, workflow, quality control and maintenance of laboratories supporting the research programme, and for training post-graduate students and post-doctoral researchers using the microbiology and molecular biology laboratories. He/she will also have a role in assay development, the development of work pipelines and in overseeing biological safety in the department. The technologist will be responsible for technology foresight to identify emerging technologies/methods, assisting researchers with grant applications, results analysis and reporting. He/she will also contribute to the development of the wider microbiome research programme within Teagasc.

Main Duties and Responsibilities:

  • To lead the administration, workflow, quality control and maintenance of the microbiology and molecular biology laboratories in Johnstown Castle.
  • Stay abreast of new techniques and tests, new procedures, new technologies in soil micro-and-molecular biology, and incorporate these into the Teagasc programme where appropriate.
  • To ensure that equipment and facilities are operating at the highest level of efficiency, and advise management on new equipment purchases.
  • To carry out laboratory analysis of soil and environmental samples for a range of micro-and-molecular biology techniques.
  • To develop new microbiological and molecular methodologies in conjunction with researchers.
  • To train post-graduate students and post-doctoral researchers using the microbiology and molecular laboratories.
  • To assist researchers with grant application writing, results analysis and reporting.
  • To undertake quality control of laboratory analyses and ensure good data management.
  • To contribute to the teamwork and team-spirit in the Environment, Soils and Land-use research department at Johnstown Castle, and to foster and add to further collaboration and integration.
  • To assist Teagasc in meeting the commitments of the Quality Customer Service Charter and Action Plan.
  • To actively participate in the annual business planning and Performance Management Development System (PMDS) processes.
  • To fully co-operate with the provisions for ensuring the health, safety and welfare of themselves, fellow staff and non-Teagasc staff and co-operate with management in enabling Teagasc to comply with legal obligations. This includes full compliance with the responsibilities outlined in the Safety Statement.
  • To oversee biological safety in the department.
  • Such other duties as may be assigned from time to time.

Person Specifications:


  • Candidates must have a QQI Level 8 degree in microbiology, molecular biology, biotechnology or a related discipline.
  • Experience in a wide range of molecular techniques including electrophoresis, PCR, qPCR, nucleic acid quantification and quality assessment, microbial fingerprinting and cloning.


  • A postgraduate degree and/or research experience in soil molecular biology or environmental microbiology would be a distinct advantage.
  • Previous research experience investigating functional microbial communities in soil.

How to Apply

The relevant Application Form and Job Specification can be accessed on our website at www.teagasc.ie/careers.

Completed Application Forms should be TYPED and saved in PDF format and submitted by email to teagascjobs@clark.ie no later than 12 midnight on Friday 11th August 2017.

Please state relevant reference code in all correspondence.

Teagasc is an equal opportunities employer. Canvassing will disqualify.

posted: 21 July 2017     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.