Postdoctoral position (2 years) in stream ecology and biogeochemistry

Umeå University

Umeå, Sweden 🇸🇪

Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology

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We are announcing a postdoctoral position in stream ecology and/or biogeochemistry to join a project focused on testing and improving the effectiveness of stream restoration. The employment is on fulltime for two years. The deadline for applications is 10 May 2022 and the position is expected to start in Aug 2022, or according to agreement.

Project description

Efforts to restore streams and rivers are increasing worldwide but often fail to recover good ecological status. This international project (RESTOLINK) will broadly explore the idea that restoration efforts fail because they do not consider the spatial scales of stream hydromorphology that are most relevant to biodiversity and ecosystem functioning. We will work toward a new framework for evaluating restoration success by mechanistically linking three central facets of stream ecosystems: hydromorphological heterogeneity at relevant scales, multi-group biodiversity, and ecosystem multifunctionality, including nutrient retention and food web complexity. We will test this framework in streams across broad latitudinal gradients, from boreal to tropical biomes, and will thus explore how biome-specific factors, such as climate, vegetation, and hydrology, set the boundaries for local responses.

The successful candidate will collaborate with a research team that includes Ryan Sponseller and Lina Polvi Sjöberg (Umeå University), but also a global consortium of researchers from Germany, Spain, and Brazil that comprise the RESTOLINK project. Depending on the applicant’s interests and expertise, they will have the freedom to focus on various aspects of the broader RESTOLINK project, including the hydromorphic controls on biofilm nutrient uptake, organic matter processing, or food web dynamics.  This is a two-year position funded through the Biodiversa program, which is locally administered by the Swedish EPA.


To be appointed under the postdoctoral agreement, the postdoctoral fellow is required to have completed a doctoral degree or a foreign degree deemed equivalent to a doctoral degree. This qualification requirements must be fulfilled no later than at the time of the appointment decision.

Priority should be given to candidates who completed their doctoral degree, according to what is stipulated in the paragraph above, no later than three years prior. If there are special reasons, candidates who completed their doctoral degree prior to that may also be eligible. Special reasons include absence due to illness, parental leave, appointments of trust in trade union organizations, military service, or similar circumstances, as well as clinical practice or other forms of appointment/assignment relevant to the subject area. Postdoctoral fellows who are to teach or supervise must have taken relevant courses in teaching and learning in higher education.

The successful candidate should have a PhD in limnology, aquatic ecology, biogeochemistry, or a closely related field. Experience with field work in stream or river ecosystems is a requirement. We seek a creative and highly motivated individual who manages to plan the work independently but also enjoy work together with colleagues in a group. Good verbal and written communication skills in English is a requirement. Applicants should hold a current driver’s license. Experience working with stream restoration, nutrient dynamics, biofilm productivity and macroinvertebrate communities are meriting.

How to apply

The application should contain the following, written in English (preferably) or Swedish:

  • A personal cover letter motivating your application and how you can contribute to the research group (max two pages),
  • CV including list of publications,
  • Verified copy of doctoral degree certificate or documentation that clarifies when the degree of doctor is expected to be obtained,
  • Certified copies of existing diplomas, list of completed academic courses and grades,
  • Copy of doctoral thesis and copies of relevant publications (no more than three),
  • Contact information for two reference persons,
  • Other documents that the applicant wishes to claim.

The closing date is 10 May 2022.


Any additional questions about the project or application should be directed to Ryan Sponseller, Umeå University ([email protected]) or Lina Polvi Sjöberg ([email protected]).

The Department of Ecology and Environmental Science carries out research and postgraduate education in ecology, environmental science and physical geography. The department has about 150 employees, about 20 of whom are post-docs. For more information, visit:

Umeå University strives to offer an equal environment where open dialogue between people with different backgrounds and perspectives lay the foundation for learning, creativity and development. We welcome people with different backgrounds and experiences to apply for the current employment.

We kindly decline offers of recruitment and advertising help.

Type of employmentTemporary position longer than 6 months
Contract typeFull time
Number of positions1
Working hours100
CountyVästerbottens län
Reference numberAN 2.2.1-647-22
ContactRyan Sponseller, 090-7866550Lina Polvi Sjöberg, 090-7866190
Last application date11.May.2022 11:59 PM CEST