Research Associate/Senior Research Associate: Peatland Geomicrobiologist

Job Number: ACAD106678
Work Pattern: Open ended/Full time
Faculty/Division: Faculty of Science
Salary: £35,333 - £39,745 per annum

The Role

The School of Earth Sciences is seeking to appoint a 4-year fixed funded full-time Research Associate or Senior Research Associate in the geomicrobiology of modern and ancient peatlands. The post is part of the international and interdisciplinary project CERES (Climate, Energy and Carbon in the Earth System), which aims to develop new organic geochemical, biochemical and isotopic understanding of modern, past and future microbial processes in peatlands, among the most important stores of organic carbon on Earth. The postholder will be part of the Marine and Terrestrial Environments Group. Supported by outstanding facilities, the CERES Team and our collaborators, they will have the opportunity for analytical innovation, global field work and intellectual creativity.

The School and the CERES Team are all committed to equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI). Information on our policies and strategy is available on our websites, and we strongly encourage applications from all backgrounds, especially those historically underrepresented in the Earth Sciences. We are committed to providing mentorship and an inclusive working environment and are exploring how to embed decolonial practice in our research and teaching.

Please include a full CV and a brief (2-page) cover letter that includes i) a statement on how CERES will advance your research vision and build on your previous experience and ii) how you will contribute to a collegial, inclusive and equitable community.

For further information, see:

School of Earth Sciences (including EDI page):



What will you be doing?

The post-holder will be responsible for determining how disruptions to peatlands (e.g., by drainage or flooding) alter peatland microbial communities and their biomarkers. Comparison of the in situ microbial communities in peatlands spanning from the tropics to the Arctic, as well as controlled experimental incubations, will reveal how geochemical parameters such as redox, nutrients, pH and temperature control peatland microbiology, with a particular focus on microbial pathways of carbon degradation.

They will have a senior role in the team and have opportunities to mentor and supervise students; they will be supported by a dedicated technician as well as outstanding facilities. They will also have opportunities to explore a wide range of peatland microbiology and biogeochemistry questions, participate in or lead field work and develop their own scientific and interdisciplinary ideas, including the co-production of knowledge with local communities and partners.

You should apply if

The candidate should have:

  • A good honours degree (or equivalent) in Microbiology, Earth or Environmental Sciences or a related subject.
  • A PhD in Environmental Microbiology, Geomicrobiology, Biogeochemistry or related disciplines.
  • Appointment at the Senior Research Associate level will also require previous research experience and an aptitude for leadership and project supervision.
  • High level skills in microbiology, including experience with bioinformatics tools and/or prior experience in the manipulation of microbial communities in the lab.
  • Field work experience is preferable but not essential.
  • Relevant experience of designing and implementing laboratory experiments.
  • Ability to publish scientific manuscripts, data reports and summaries.
  • Experience of liaison with external collaborators and organisation.

Available documents

Closing date: 6 April 2023.

published: 03 March 2023     Please mention EARTHWORKS when responding to this advertisement.