Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL
The Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL is part of the ETH Domain. Approximately 600 people work on the sustainable use and protection of the environment and on the handling of natural hazards.

The Research Unit Forest Health and Biotic Interactions investigates the influence of biotic factors on forest health and develops the scientific basis for the protection of forests against potentially harmful organisms. Within a project funded by the SNF for 2 years (with option for extension) from April 2024 or by agreement, the Phytopathology group is looking for a
PostDoc in assessing the influence of urbanisation on the fungal microbiome of trees 90% (f/m/d)

Recently it has become clear that tree health and fitness are strongly influenced by tree microbiome, i.e., all microorganisms which are intimately associated with the trees. However, these organisms themselves can be influenced by the environment in which the trees grow. This project aims at investigating the effects of urbanisation on taxonomic and functional diversity of foliar fungal endophytes of trees using a third-generation sequencing approach and state-of-the-art bioinformatic and statistical analyses.

You will plan, organize, and coordinate sampling in at least 20 European cities as well as several Asian and North American cities, in collaboration with international members of the EU COST Action CA20132 Urban Tree Guard. Further, you will be responsible for sample processing and preparation for PacBio sequencing in a modern and fully equipped molecular laboratory and with the help of experienced technicians. Finally, you will analyse the data and publish the results in international scientific journals with the support of several project partners. You will benefit from a world-leading academic environment at WSL and the excellent quality of life in Switzerland. We offer the candidate to be part of a diverse and dynamic research group.

You have a PhD in natural sciences with strong interest in microbial ecology and phytopathology. You have proven experience in studying microbiome and in analysing metabarcoding data. You are an open-minded person with good communication skills who likes to collaborate with international colleagues. You are well organized and operate independently in a structured and efficient way and are motivated to coordinate an international group of researchers. You have very good oral and written skills in English. 

Please send your complete application to Michèle Bucher, Human Resources WSL, by uploading the requested documents through our webpage. Applications via email will not be considered. Dr. Simone Prospero +41 (0)44 739 22 48, simone.prospero(at) or Dr. Iva Franić +41 (0)44 739 24 24, iva.franic(at) will be happy to answer any questions or offer further information. The WSL strives to increase the proportion of women in its employment, which is why qualified women are particularly called upon to apply for this position.
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