The aim of the project is to understand how climate change affects evolution and the global distribution of species. The earth is subject to recurrent and rapid climate shifts at various time-scales, but the consequences of this has not been incorporated into models of evolution. Climate shifts cause extinction, splitting, and merging of gene pools, potentially affecting rates of speciation and species extinction. There are two opposing views on the effect of climate change on species diversification. According to one view, climate shifts enhance speciation by promoting lineage splitting. The alternative view is that climate shifts curb speciation by causing extinction or merging of diverging gene pools, as well as leading to species extinction. In the project, models of past climate change are combined with phylogenetic data to address how diversification of species and spatial patterns in genetic divergence within species are affected by climate variability. A paper providing a background to the project is found in Annu. Rev. Ecol. Syst. 33:741-777.
Position 1 investigates the role of climate variability for the diversification of species. Data on past climate change from climate models are used together with phylogenies from a range of taxa to test for an association between climate variability and species diversification.
Position 2 tests how climatic variability affects the degree of genetic divergence among populations. Data on levels of genetic divergence among populations are combined with data on past climate change from climate models to test for a correlation between genetic divergence and climatic stability, both within species (in cases where climatic stability varies across its geographic range) and between species inhabiting regions differing in climatic stability.
To qualify for the positions you should have a PhD degree or equivalent. Experience with geographic information systems and bioclimatic modelling is meriting for both positions. Position 1 requires good knowledge on methods of statistical inference from phylogenetic data. Position 2 requires familiarity with theories on causes for spatial patterns in genetic variation and knowledge on statistical inference using genetic data. The positions are for two years and available immediately, preferably starting no later than September 1, 2009.
For further information, please contact Associate Professor Roland Jansson, Department of Ecology and Environmental Science, phone: +46-(0)90-786 95 73, firstname.lastname@example.org, or look at
Your application, in English, should include: (1) a short summary of your previous research achievements and other experience relevant for the positions, (2) a short description of why you are a good candidate for the position and how you could contribute to the research, (3) a curriculum vitae with a list of publications, and (4) names and contact details of three references.
Union information is available from SACO, +46-(0)90-786 53 65, SECO civil, +46-(0)90-786 52 96, and ST, +46-(0)90-786 54 31.
If you are applying for both positions, you need to send in one application for each position. Applications will be discarded or, if the applicant so wishes, returned two years after the position has been filled. Documents sent electronically should be in MS Word or PDF format.
Your complete application, marked with reference number 315-301-09, should be sent to email@example.com (state the reference number as subject) or to the Registrar, Umeå University, SE-901 87 Umeå, Sweden to arrive May 31, 2009 at the latest.
Official announcement can be obtained from: