Umeå University, Faculty of Arts

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The Department of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies is looking for a postdoctoral researcher in archaeology focusing on dietary isotope studies. The employment period is two years full-time (100%). 

Job description
The postdoc is expected to conduct dietary isotope studies on Ukrainian, North West and Central European materials. Research will be carried out in collaboration with Professor Malcolm Lillie and you will be part of the Environmental Archaeology Lab (MAL) at the Department of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies. In addition to research, part of the job consists in contributing to the development of the research environment by actively participating in the research seminar and other research activities. Certain administrative tasks related to research activities might occur. 

Qualifications and assessments
A person who has been awarded a doctorate or a foreign qualification deemed to be the equivalent of a doctorate shall be qualified for employment as a postdoctoral researcher. For this position a doctoral degree in dietary isotope studies, or the equivalent, is required. A precondition is that the applicant has not previously been employed as a postdoc at Umeå University for more than a year within the same or equivalent discipline.
The degree must be completed no more than three years before the closing date of the application unless special circumstances exist. Special circumstances include absence due to illness, parental leave or clinical practice, appointments of trust in trade union organizations or similar circumstances. 

The candidate must be able to prove an in-depth understanding of factors affecting isotope signals in dietary reconstruction, in-depth understanding and statistical modelling experience in environmental factors (such as moisture availability) and their influence on the interpretation of dietary isotope signals in diet studies, experience of end to end processing of skeletal collagen for carbon and nitrogen analysis and broad knowledge of statistical analysis (especially in R) in terms of source partitioning models, multi-level regression models, classification and prediction. 

Good writing and oral communication skills in English as well as good ability to work with others are also requirements for the employment. 

Desirable qualifications
A broad understanding of European areas such as NW Europe, Central Europe and Ukraine in prehistoric context, the ability to problem solve issues that arise throughout analytical processes as well as the ability to perform pre-treatment chemistry for radiocarbon dating of skeletal collagen as the ability to perform pre-treatment chemistry for radiocarbon dating of skeletal collagen, are considered a significant merit.

Experience of writing software packages for dietary isotope analysis, experience of using OxCal Bayesian modelling and fieldwork experience in archaeological excavation and/or environmental monitoring also represent significant merits for the employment. 

In the assessment of candidates, special importance will primarily be laid to the scientific merits of the candidates. 

The application should include the following documents in English: 

(1) A letter of interest that states the candidate’s motivation for applying for the position and briefly explains how he or she meets the requirements  and desirable qualifications for the position (1-3 pp)
(2) Curriculum Vitae and validated copies of degree certificates (date of thesis defense and its title, current and previous positions, grants, awards, research collaborations)
(3) A full publication list with electronic copies of 3-5 of the most relevant works, the thesis included
(4) A list of 2-3 reference persons including their positions and contact details 

The application is to be submitted through the e-recruiting system Varbi, no later than 15th of February 2019. 

Further information
The postdoc is a two-year full-time position (100%) starting on the 1st of June 2019 unless otherwise agreed. The selected candidate is required to be present on-site in Umeå to a high degree. 

There are currently fewer female than male teachers and researchers in archaeology at the department, and we therefore especially encourage applications from female candidates. 

For more information about the employment, contact Professor Malcolm Lillie ( or Head of Department Jonas Nilsson (+46-90-7869990, ). 

For information about the department, visit Department of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies.

We look forward to receiving your application! 

Type of employment Temporary position longer than 6 months
Contract type Full time
First day of employment 2019-06-01 unless otherwise agreed
Salary Monthly salary
Number of positions 1
Working hours 100%
City Umeå
County Västerbottens län
Country Sweden
Reference number AN 2.2.1-90-19
  • Jonas Nilsson, Head of Department, +46 90-786 99 90,
  • Malcolm Lillie, Professor,
Union representative
  • SACO, +46 90-786 53 65
  • SEKO, +46 90-786 52 96
  • ST, +46 90-786 54 31
Published 17.Jan.2019
Last application date 15.Feb.2019 11:59 PM CET

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